Wearable devices have been used by the military forces much before they entered the consumer market. They were used as a part of health and medical monitoring in military forces. Now, wearable devices are being used for various healthcare applications including Alzheimer patients. Low-cost body-worn sensors have been found effective in detecting Alzheimer’s at an early stage. They are even effective in improving clinical trial efficiency and promoting research investment.
What is a wearable device?
Wearable devices are electronic gadgets which can be comfortably worn by any individual. The main function of these devices is to track information on a real-time basis. The motion sensors in them are responsible for taking snapshots of your daily activities and can even sync them with your mobile devices or laptops. The popular usage for these wearable devices is to track health and fitness of a person. Other functions might include taking pictures or syncing calls from mobile devices.
Types of Wearable Devices
- Smart Watches: A smartwatch is a watch that not just tells time but also provides notifications regarding calls, messages, emails, social media account updates etc.
- Fitness bands: The device can count the number of steps taken by an individual and monitor heart rate. Using this information, the device further calculates the number of calories burned and exercise performed by the user.
- Head Mounted Display: It is based on the technology of virtual reality. The virtual information is provided directly to your eyes.
- Sports Watch: Sports watches are specially designed for athletes or people regular with any sports activity. These devices provide heart rate and user’s pace and even have GPS to track progress.
- Smart Jewellery: Some smartwatches are even designed like jewelry and generally target female customers. They give all the notifications provided by smartwatch including calls, messages, emails etc.
- Smart clothes: Smart devices are added to normal clothes and provide the same information as smartwatches.
- Implants: These devices are placed under the skin of an individual and are generally used for medical purposes.
Biggest players in Wearable Device Market
The top players in the wearable device market include:
- Apple: Apple is a leading brand of wearable devices and continues to dominate the market. A recent report suggested that over 46.2 million wearable devices were shipped in the past year. IDC forecasted that Apple would continue to lead the market with Apple Watch Series 4.
- Samsung: The Samsung smartwatch is stylish and can be used to track blood pressure, heart rate, and other health-related information. The device can even check for stress levels. The galaxy buds are similar to Apple AirPods and use Bluetooth to connect with Android devices. They can be wirelessly charged as well.
- Nubia: Wearable smart devices by Nubia are expected to cause a disruption in the wearable device market. The details about this device are yet to be announced, but it is expected to lead a revolution in the field of smartwatches.
- Xiaomi: Xiaomi is a leading brand with a 14.8% market shares and 2.3 % growth rate over the year.
- Huawei: Huawei is another leading brand in the smart wearable devices market and has managed to capture an 8.7 % market share.
Use of Wearable Devices in Alzheimer’s and other health conditions
The main problem with Alzheimer’s patients is wandering away and subsequent problems in tracking them. This is where wearable devices come into the picture. According to the latest wearable medical device trends, these devices are being very helpful in tracking Alzheimer patients. GPS helps in setting up tracking zones and alerts about the location of the patient to the caretakers. This brings peace of mind to family members of the patients.