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Downsides to wearables: Limited functions, inaccurate data, no cellular connection

Matt Hamblen | June 9, 2016
Survey finds users want apps for safety and security, more than just health and fitness.

In the survey, Ericsson asked consumers about 20 different potential wearable applications to gauge their interest in them.  The highest ratings went to several safety and security apps such as a smart locator, a panic button capability, an identity authenticator (for airport check-ins or purchases) and a safe-driving wearable. After 2020, consumers were most interested in wearables such as a smart bracelet that would turn on the heat or air conditioning in a home after judging the body temperature of the wearer. 

Another novel item that generated high interest by participants was a smart water purifier that is comprised of a bracelet with a UV purifying light bulb that can be detached and placed in water to kill contaminants. The idea was generated from a UNICEF tech challenge called “Wearables for good.”

“Manufacturers are not reading the signs correctly in terms of what consumers need when they buy wearables,” Sethi said. “Most wearable manufacturers have to diversify [beyond fitness and health] and find other use cases. That will be a game changer.”


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