Software

Most People in the US Still Don’t Use Wearables

Wearables, once the hot tech gadget, have cooled off in demand amid growing interest in smart speakers, according to one research firm. Despite products like the Apple Watch, only 20 percent of the US population will use a wearable next year, eMarketer said in a report last week. Sales for wearables, which include fitness trackers, will grow, but at a slow pace. Starting in 2019, wearable usage will only increase year-over-year by single digits, the research firm said. Part of the problem is…

Technology

Walk Around in the Sun to Power Wearables With This Cloth

A new wearable fabric that generates electricity from both sunlight and motion could let you power your cell phone or smart watch by walking around outside. Researchers made the textile by weaving together plastic fiber solar cells and fiber-based generators that produce electricity when rubbed against each other. The 0.32-millimeter-thick fabric is lightweight, flexible, breathable, and uses low-cost materials, its creators say. It could be integrated into clothes, tents, and curtains, turning them into power sources when they flap or…

Gadgets

Basic Wearables More Popular Than Feature-Rich Ones

Turns out, consumers are more interested in basic wearables than fancy, feature-rich ones. According to new data from IDC, shipments of wearable devices reached 22.5 million units in the second quarter of the year, a 26.1 percent year-over-year increase. But while the overall wearables market grew, its two categories “traveled at different speeds and directions,” the research firm said. Basic wearables, aka those that don’t support third-party applications, grew 48.8 percent from the same quarter last year. Smart wearables, on…

Technology

Wearables shipments to reach 213.6M worldwide in 2020, IDC says

Wearables shipments will more than double by 2020, research firm IDC predicts, reaching 213.6 million units. Its latest report shows wearables devices are expected to reach 101.9 million units by the end of this year, representing 29 percent growth over 2015. In contrast to smartphones — which consolidate technologies — the wearables market will benefit from the emergence of different form factors, like eyewear or clothing, the research firm says. “Eyewear has a clear focus on the enterprise as it…

HARDWARE

WHY WEARABLES WILL REPLACE YOUR SMARTPHONE

The next iPhone won’t have a headphone jack, if the leaks and rumors are true. Some say: Good! The 3.5mm audio jack system is literally Victorian-era technology, a small version of the 6.35mm jack invented in 1878 for telephone operators. Removing the jack would make iPhones slimmer, simpler and more waterproof. Others say: Bad! Killing the audio jack harms users, making decades of earbuds, headphones and other devices unusable without a klunky converter dongle. Plus, switching from analog headphone jacks…