Time marches on: The rise of the smart watch

Today’s technology is moving faster than we ever could have expected. The smartphone changed everything, and introduced a mobile landscape we never imagined. Now, with the advent of wearable tech, we’re seeing another transformation in the design and use of these devices in our everyday lives. Wearables are beginning to catch on, opening up new possibilities for consumers and businesses alike. And while the wearable market is still small, it’s growing rapidly. Last week, Google announced “Android Wear”, a mobile version of the Android OS designed for fashionable smart watches, which many believe will push us to the wearable tipping point. The next digital battleground may just fall on the wrist.

Smart watches are easier to adopt than other wearable tech—they are small, powerful and more broadly applicable than other wearable devices such as smart glasses. They are quicker to integrate into our daily lives and pair with our existing devices without the hassle of adapting to a new platform. Watches are not a new concept for consumers to embrace, and it seems that shoppers are very excited about the emerging lines of smart watches hitting stores. Meanwhile, manufacturers have also taken notice. Google’s Android Wear launch last week partnered with 11 manufacturers including LG, Motorola and Samsung to design fashionable, high tech watches that pack some serious processing power matching previous smartphones.

If successful, a globally embraced smart watch would present the biggest upgrade to a consumer product since the introduction of the smartphone. With capabilities ranging from checking the weather to monitoring your fitness regimen, the smart watch could be the next device to change the mobile landscape. With the ability to absorb other existing wearable markets, such as fitness bracelets and sleep monitors, the smart watch has the potential to be the category-leader of the wearable world. According to a recent Business Insider report, one in 20 smart phones will pair with a smart watch in the future, translating into a $9.2 billion market by 2018. With the market set to flourish, we can expect big things from the smart watch.

With its ability to extend mobile technology into an accessible medium for the average consumer, we think the rise of the smart watch is inevitable. We’re excited to see what solutions will emerge for consumers and businesses as these devices take hold in the marketplace. While practical applications are just beginning to surface, we have only started to see the power and influence of the smart watch in the modern mobile market.