Category: Gadgets

Wearable technology trends show disappointing results for smartwatches

There are now tons of options on the market and despite tech company hopes, they’re not taking off.

As the holiday shopping season truly got underway last year, many companies predicted the launch of powerful wearable technology trends. Firms were unveiling devices left, right and center to ensure they had the chance to become the next big thing.

That time brought the entrance of the Apple Watch and Samsung Gear S2, major wearable tech players.

Lenovo, LG and Huawei all stepped in with Google to use Android Wear on their offerings. Each company wanted to add their own device to the wearable technology trends. However, a year later and well into the next holiday shopping season, it’s clear that consumers aren’t impressed. At least, they’re not as impressed as tech firms thought they would be. They’re certainly not ready to pay the hefty price tags for the devices.

Many in the industry feel that wearable technology trends won’t pick up until smartwatches become more convincing.

Wearable Technology Trends - SmartwatchAccording to IDC senior research analyst Jitesh Ubrani, wearable technology companies have yet to give consumers a reason to want to buy. “A lot of what these devices can do, they’re essentially just mimicking the phone.”

As most people already have other mobile devices and certainly have a smartphone, there is little motivation to buy a smartwatch. Currently, people bring their smartphones everywhere they go. As the mobile devices are nearly always in a hand or a pocket, they are not considered inconvenient to use. Therefore, asking people to drop another few hundred dollars after already having spent several hundred on the phone seems too much for many consumers.

These unfortunate wearable technology trends have not been without their casualties. Pebble, for example, announced last week that they were shutting down. That company had been among the first smartwatch companies. It had a loyal following and was able to hold its own against the competition for quite some time. Now, faced with the Apple Watch and offerings from many other giants, even Pebble will be dissolving and selling its software to Fitbit; the leader of the fitness tracker scene.

Nokia mobile devices will start selling again next year

The brand will be releasing its first Android powered smartphones and tablets at the beginning of 2017.

The very first Nokia mobile devices that have seen store shelves in two years will start being sold in 2017. They will include both smartphones and tablets. Those gadgets will run on Android, said the company.

The Finnish company is now completing the last stages of a licensing agreement with HMD Global.

Through this new agreement, HMD Global holds exclusive rights to use the brand for Nokia mobile devices for the next 10 years. That company is also based in Finland. It will manufacture phones under the Nokia brand and will also continue the production of the company’s existing feature phone lineup.

Nokia Mobile Devices - Image of LuminaBoth HMD Global and Foxconn, a Chinese company, acquired Nokia from Microsoft. Foxconn was contracted for the mobile device manufacturing. The next devices released under the brand’s name will run on Android and will be available for purchase before mid-2017.

The Nokia mobile devices will be marketed on the brand’s reputation for simple, quality products.

According to Arto Nummela, HMD Global CEO, “We will be extremely true to the Nokia brand. The brand is known for simplicity, ease of use, reliability, and quality. These are the elements that we will deliver together with amazing industrial design.” That company will be making an investment of more than $500 million into marketing smartphones and tablets under the Nokia name.

Two years ago, Nokia sold its mobile hardware division to Microsoft. The acquisition was for $7.2 billion and required Nokia to stop branding its handsets until the close of this year. The company had been struggling and had already slashed its workforce from 24,000 at its highest to less than 1,000.

Microsoft didn’t do much better with the hardware division. It proceeded to sell the Nokia mobile devices brand to Foxconn and HMD Global for $350 million. This was in response to a massive 46 percent phone revenue nosedive it experienced last quarter. The companies are going ahead with new smartphones and tablets boasting the Nokia brand’s name as well as the Android operating system.