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Smartwatches: Fading Fad or Must-Have Wearable Tech?

With the rise of Twitter’s instant trend-setting, real-time information broadcast platform, the necessity of a “right-now” information diet is highlighted by its user popularity and $2.5 billion global revenue. Consumers are no longer content to settle for next-day-information, and instead have pushed for access to a relentless 24/7 news cycle covering everything from foreign affairs to celebrity gossip.

The trend which merges ease of access with availability has pushed the top tech development companies to tailor their products to satisfy this demand, accelerated by the introduction of wearable technology such as smartwatches. A mobile device equipped with touch screen display, phone connectivity and small enough to be worn on the wrist (most have interchangeable, different-colored bands,) smartwatches allow for greater mobility than smartphones with an unmatched fitness component.

How Much Do They Cost?

Forecasted to reach 70 million units by 2021, the growing industry has seized the market niche of an all-in-one pedometer/text service/message-reader/calendar/music control/news service. While the average price of a fully-loaded smartwatch is still quite steep, there are many brands and models that offer an affordable amalgam of sleek design, functionality, solid battery life, and unique features. For under $100, you can sport a stylish smartwatch that services both your social media and hands-free calling needs.

Novelty or Necessity?

The true value of a smartwatch is heavily dependent on the specific uses and lifestyle of each consumer. If scouring the market for a smartwatch only to have greater ease of access to Facebook, then the investment of a wearable tech purchase is hardly worth the return. However, if you are on-the-go and need easy access to an ever-changing business or personal calendar, require a camera at your fingertips, monitor a constant stream of incoming messages and emails, and are seriously committed to monitoring your fitness and health, then a smartwatch is a savvy acquisition.

With new features, downloadable and built-in applications, smartwatches are the unmovable foundation of the wearable tech industry. As was the case with cell phones and smartphones, what was once deemed an unnecessary luxury by consumers will soon become a vital accessory of modern life. Due to the small size and increased number of sensors, smartwatches are far more than just a wearable extension of the smartphone. With the market still in its infancy, smartwatches will continue to increase in popularity alongside their functionality, design, and personalization.