Hello French Fries,
If you are like me, and had to spend your morning deicing your car, freezing your limbs off, and driving through a blizzard to get to work, all while cursing the fact that you chose to live in a winter-weather town instead of Miami, Rio or Bora Bora, well then this post is for you. Wearable tech (often called wearables) are high-tech gizmos and gadgets that are designed to be worn, often blending trends in the tech and fashion worlds. Today, I’m going to detail what I think are the coolest wearable devices to consider getting for 2018.
Lightweight, winter-ready and green for the environment, ThermalTech has released a winter jacket that uses solar powered steel yarn woven into the jacket in order to heat the body contained within. While most traditional jackets recycle the body’s heat, this jacket takes heat from light, both indoor and outdoor, to more quickly and effectively warm the wearer. Because it’s solar powered, and uses external heating sources instead of internal ones, it does not require great heft and weight to it, thus allowing it to be light weight and mobile. Great for days like today where it’s 20 degrees outside, there’s a sheet of frozen ice and snow is falling at a quick rate.
Price: USD $139
The most common new year’s resolution is to lose weight. Wearables to help people with fitness have existed for almost as long as wearable tech has been a thing, however, one of the best cardio exercises anybody can do is to go swimming, there’s high resistance, no impact, and it uses most of all of your muscle groups. However, you can’t really bring your standard fitbit into the pool with you, since it’s electronic and will short and die. MoovNow’s Fitness Tracker has been designed to be waterproof with both swimmers and heavy sweaters in mind. It’s considered one of the best fitness trackers in general, and has been rated as the best waterproof one available on the market. For those of you looking to burn the calories, and get into swimsuit body shape for your inevitable flight from the cold weather to Bora Bora, or some other tropical beach, then MoovNow is the fitness tracker for you.
Price: USD $59.95
3.) Eyesight Raptor
For you cyclists out there, the Eyesight Raptor is a pair of smart-sunglasses that features an HUD display that uses projection to turn your entire lens into a display instead of a tiny portion on the screen. While it’s target demographic is admittedly a small, fitness-minded segment of the population (aka those who ride bikes for fun), what I like best about this product is that it’s not an obvious wearable like most smart glasses, it actually has a cool, sleek and fashionable design and could be mistaken as just a pair of designer sunglasses.
Price: USD $499
For all you fashionable ladies, Ringly’s line of rings, bracelets and pendants are a mark of beauty and simplicity. They are modest from a tech point of view, with no outward semblance or sign that they are anything other than a piece of jewelry. However, using an app that can sync the jewelry pieces to your phone, they track your fitness metrics, vibrate to alert you to mobile alerts, and guide you through meditation. With a target audience of professional women between the ages of 25 and 40, this brand was made with fashion and beauty as the central focus.
Prices: USD $99+
Kids these days… What happens when you have a young, keen and observant 15-year-old mind with a tech-centric worldview? You get shoes that harness the energy your body emits when you take a step and recycles it to charge your smartphone. SolePower built off of Angelo Casimiro’s breakthrough to design an insole that converts your steps’ kinetic energy into electricity by using them to power a wheel contained in a pack outside the shoe, which then powers a mini-generator that can be plugged into your phone to charge it. SolePower has also designed a pair of workboots that utilize this technology to not only power your phone, but also to track your vitals, connect to wifi, keep tabs on foot temperature, fatigue, gps location, efficiency, etc. There are versatile applications for this technology across a variety of workplaces.
Price: USD $199
Yoga has been all the rage for about nearly four decades now, and that’s not going to subside. Nadi X designed a wearable pair of yoga pants that help ease you into your yoga positions by using vibrating messages to help you with your posture and positioning, while using the same vibrations to massage your muscles while they are stretching out. While it’s only compatible with iOS devices, Nadi X Yoga Pants practically do all the work for you.
Price: USD $179
Leave it to the French to come up with a wearable and fashionable line of dresses, bikinis and swimsuits for the ladies. Spinali Design’s line of fashionable beachwear is designed with keeping you relaxed with the perfect beach-bod. Using UV sensors, the bikini will monitor your skin and tell you through your smartphone when to reapply your sunscreen, preventing sunburn. Very sexy innovation from a company based in my grandmother’s hometown.
Price: EUR €198
Want an interesting twist on an American classic? Levi’s has partnered with Google to develop a brand of Smart Jeans and Denim Jackets. Business is a cutthroat world, and those who do not innovate and simply rest on their laurels do not fair well. There’s a reason that Levi’s has been making blue jeans and denim products consistently since 1853. They have their finger on the pulse of the consumer market, and adapt and innovate accordingly. They are now entering the 21st century with a denim jacket that will sync with your smartphone or tablet and allow you to control it by just tapping on your jacket in certain places. How cool is that?
Price: USD $350
For the parents out there, nothing brings joy quite like growing the family with a newborn child. Owlet has a line of smart socks that not only warm those adorable little toesies, but also monitor the child’s vital statistics. They can be checked at any time to allay the concerns of worried parents, and also will immediately notify you through your smartphone if something suddenly is off. This early warning notification has been credited with saving multiple infants (and their families) from SIDS, so there is more than just piece of mind and toe warmth that these socks provide.
Price: USD $300
I have made no qualms of expressing my views on the fashionable and classic qualities of watches, and my distaste for smart watches that look like computers instead of actual watches. Fossil’s Q Venture Smartwatch is very classy and timeless feeling in design, with a unique watch face that is quirky, artistic and yet attractive. Some argue that the Q Venture is more for show then function because it does not include GPS tracking, heart rate monitoring, or instant pay features while only including a simple interface with basic games, functions and Google app compatibility. I say it’s first and foremost a watch. It tells the time and looks bloody great doing so, and it really fits my tastes aesthetically. That’s good enough for me!
Price: USD $275
Until next time…
…the ketchup is in the sauce.