Tag: wearable technology devices

Smartwatch app trial for traffic alerts starts in Finland

Researchers are hoping that their software will be able to provide concise information regarding complex situations.

While traffic apps have been available for smartphones for some time now, when it comes to providing that same feature through a smartwatch app, there are far greater challenges, if only because of the tiny size of the screen.

The goal is to be able to provide useful assistance regardless the complexity of a traffic snarl.

Beyond the size of the screen, the reason that everything needs to be greatly simplified is that if people are going to be wearing a smartwatch while behind the wheel, so they cannot be using these wearable technology devices in a way that will cause a dangerous distraction. This means that the tech must be accessible, customizable, and readable without having to spend any real amount of time focusing on the screen or changing the settings. Finish researchers are now demonstrating a way for this to occur in a practical way for real life situations.

The smartwatch app is being tested by a team of researchers from the VTT Technical Research Centre.

Smartwatch App - TrafficThese apps for wearable technology are meant to bring together social communication tools with speech recognition, into a simple looking display that will depict traffic information in an intelligent and non-distracting fashion.

The application is being tested in Helsinki, the capital of Finland through a “Park&Ride” app that has been designed for wearables. Within those tests, it was found that this method was even more effective than navigation over smartphones.

The information that is available through the wearable technology application provides drivers with quite a bit of information, such as whether a level rail crossing now has a train that is approaching. This will alert drivers nearby, or will allow the first driver to dictate a message so that other road users that are nearby will be warned that the train will be coming and that there will be a delay at the crossing.

The researchers concluded that this process will allow for messages to be safely spread in a non-distracting way through the smartwatch app more quickly than would be possible through a traditional mobile application.

Swatch leaps into the smartwatch market with both feet

The wristwatch maker and tech company has revealed its plans to compete in the wearable technology category.

The bestselling watchmaker in the world, Swatch Group, has now announced its intentions to introduce new models of smartwatch that will allow consumers to be able to display data from smartphones and to even make contactless payments by way of wearable technology.

The CEO of the company, Nick Hayek, has stated that the first versions of this gadget will be available in May.

At the same time, Hayek made it clear that Swatch doesn’t intend to try to replicate the types of smartwatch that have now been launched by many of the major players in the wearable tech categories, such as Motorola, Pebble, and Apple. Those fully featured devices are not the type of product that this company will be producing, at least not for the first wave. As a company that currently sells 18 percent of all wristwatches in the world, it could be possible that Swatch has a good idea as to what consumers really want to be wearing and what they want from those devices.

Swatch is now adding the smartwatch to its massive lineup that has consistently been growing its market share.

Smartwatch - SwatchThe company makes wristwatches under a range of different brands, including Calvin Klein, Omega, Breguet, Rado, and several others, in addition to its own. It has managed to maintain a consistent growth of its market share over a steady five years and has seen significant sales growth, as well, despite the fact that wristwatches had been somewhat falling out of favor as an accessory.

Now, the company is stepping into a market that already feels flooded, even before these wearable technology devices have started becoming commonplace. Nick Hayek explained that there will be two types of wireless technology incorporated into the first wearables released by the brand. The first will be NFC technology. This will make it possible for the gadgets to trigger contactless payments, unlock hotel room doors and other compatible locks. The second will be Bluetooth, which will allow data to be sent and received through communication between the smartwatches and smartphones.