In the past few weeks, a stream of wearables has been revealed with a philosophy different than Google Glass or the Sony smartwatch. Instead of connecting users with email, text message, social media and other phone functions, these simple devices aim to solve common life problems. Australian sunglass company Tzukuri has placed a Bluetooth chip in its glasses. When left behind, the chip communicates with the owner’s cellphone. It’s also solar-powered to remove the hassle of changing batteries. And Everpurse expanded its line of phone charging wallets to purses, which evolve the phone charging purse concept by eliminating the need to attach the phone to a hidden USB. Users can just drop their phone in to have the battery repowered.
These types of devices seem to be doing well. Everpurse just raised venture capital, and plans to expand to radio-frequency technology that sends an alert if a user has forgotten keys or a wallet. And since January, several companies have released bracelets with technological capabilities. Nivea’s sun bracelet can be torn out of a magazine ad and synced with a phone. Once it’s wrapped around a child’s arm, it will send an alert if the children wander outside of a safe zone. JUNE, a bracelet by Netatmo, sends a signal to users to move to the shade once their sun exposure approaches harmful levels.
Unlike smartwatches and Glass, these wearables don’t promise to revolutionize the way we live or connect. Given the complications of making devices people use, these problem-solvers might be just what the wearable industry needs to become mainstream.
For more on wearables, look out for our upcoming Intelligence Report.