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For our final Analyzing Trends project, we were challenged to create a presentation deck that answers the question "What is the future of ___?", then build a strategy for a potential client in who has not yet dabbled in the industry based on key insights. My topic: Wearable technology. My client: Soul Cycle. The process involved first researching current trend forces shaping the world of wearables, then forecasting ones which may emerge in the future.
The Future of Wearable Fitness
Analyzing Trends – Final Project
The World of Wearables
First came fitness… Then life-logging… Augmented reality… Everything else.
SAFETY / STEALTH
HOME / ARCHITECTURE
THE APPLICATIONSTHE REAL ESTATE
Why Fitness? Who Owns
Nielsen. Connected Life Report.
Why hasn’t this
For a fitness wearable to go mainstream, it needs to think less like
the techies developing them and more like the mass consumer.
Innovation ≠ FLASHY + ADVANCED.
Innovation = DESIGNED FOR MY NEEDS.
The novelty eventually
The Trend Forces
THE UNREADY USER HARDWARE’S HARD DATA DILEMMA
Early users ≠ Mass adopters.
“If you’re not a techie or an early
adopter, people are very discerning
about what they’re willing to wear
-Tracey Samuelson, Marketplace
How Innovations Diffuse
Geoffrey A. Moore. Crossing the Chasm.
The Fitness Tribes
STYLISH YOGISNACKER / FALSE STARTEREXTREMIST / DEVOTEE
Problem: Unique and similar needs.
“We're starting to see fashion companies turn into tech companies and vice versa, but there are still
gaps in the language the two fields use and the life cycles of the products they make. […] But for now,
there are myriad round-ish, single-purpose, wearable-device startups that continue to test the waters.”
No workout’s too challenging.
apparel and intense training.
Requires instruction and positive
reinforcement. Looks for simple,
Has a regular routine. Loves wear
anywhere clothes with a fashion
83% of the $27B yoga
industry are women.
and cycling are the top
three ‘sports’ that
women take part in on
a weekly basis.
Women’s Sports & Fitness Foundation
In 2007, health club
membership in the US
stood at 41.5 M, up 139%
Women’s Sports Foundation
“Though nearly half of Americans said they’d
be interested in wearable tech in the future,
72% wish devices were cheaper.”
Take-Away: Make It Affordable
JAWBONE UP24 - $129.99
FITBIT FLEX - $99.95
NIKE+ FUELBAND - $99
Problem: The Price Issue
The Hardware-Software Debate
Problem: Too many choices.
“The silo mentality of the major players in the tech
industry like Samsung or Apple that allows them to build
their own ecosystems—each with their own unique
devices, platforms, and operating systems, is creating
further friction in the industry. And that’s not including all
the startups with their own respective platforms.”
-Janice Cuban, Wearable World News
“Despite sustained media attention (and
fashion spreads), wearable products are yet
to gain traction. For an industry that is
projected to grow to 45 million shipments by
2017, sales volumes for wearable tech lag
significantly behind those for mainstream
products. But, the problem isn’t about
marketing. It is about design.”
-Rakesh Sharma, Forbes
Problem: Form has yet to meet function.
The Wrong “Whys”
of users want devices
that look more like
Take-Away: Make It Seamless
Problem: Not user-friendly.
“[…] companies should also note that in most of our work and play, we want things
to be usefully inconspicuous, according to experimental research. […] As we go
about our business in the physical world, the distance between mind, body, and
things fades away.
-H. James Wilson, Harvard Business Review
“[…] most of the current offerings are
classic cases of technology in search of
a use case… too reliant on the lazy
assumption that advanced or extreme
users are bellwethers for the mass
market. It doesn’t follow that what
sports geeks and self-quantifiers do
today, the masses will do tomorrow.”
Endeavor Partners. Inside Wearables – Part 2.
Problem: How close is “too” close?
An extreme example:
Biostamp’s "seamless sensing sticker“.
“At the center of the wearables business ecosystem are
the device manufacturers who make money primarily
through the sales of their devices. However, unlike many
other consumer electronics categories, the smart
wearables business ecosystem extends well beyond the
hardware providers. […] The expanse of the ecosystem is
primarily driven by the fact most of the smart wearables on
the market have an open API (Application Programming
-Endeavor Partners. Inside Wearables – Part 2.
Data’s Hoarded, But Not Utilized
“Once users are being measured and quantified, the data must be
interactive and easy to understand. The users need to be able to look at
their data in ways that are interesting to them, but also know what to do to
influence their measurements and scores. […] Insight, not data, is the key.
When it comes to productizing these solutions for consumers, it’s important
for entrepreneurs to remember to package their offerings not as Analytics,
Data or Tools, but instead to sell Insights from the numbers. That’s where I
think Quantification can move away from just efficacy and become about
taking control of your own life.”
-Richard Yao, IPG Media Lab
Problem: How to harness it?
Take-Away: Ask for Permission
“According to the report, one glaring concern users have about
wearable devices is skepticism about privacy and security. Of
respondents participating in a survey, 82% said they were worried that
wearable technology would invade their privacy. Similarly, 86%
expressed concern that wearables would make them more prone to
-William Welsh, Information Week
Problem: Everyone in Stealth-Mode
CV Dazzle explores how fashion can be used as
camouflage from face-detection technology.
Stealth Wear’s counter-
HEALTH x MIND
MAKE IT AFFORDABLE. MAKE IT SEAMLESS. ASK FOR PERMISSION.
It doesn’t matter where it’s on us. Anything that touches our bodies
automatically inherits a high level of intimacy.
Tech can’t speak its own language. It needs to speak our’s.
Dissolving into our bodies, dissolving into our lives. Remove the
“Tech” from “Wearable Technology”.
Leverage existing competencies.
Activewear sales growing
more 4x as fast as the $201
billion US apparel industry.
Keep thinking “clothes”.
Partner Equinox recently launched a
Wearables have a long way to go before