The resurgence of wearable smart technology has opened up many advancements in the field of wearable gadgets. Digital devices that you can wear have thus become the most hotly anticipate tech this 2014. The older mechanical gadgets, however, continue to have a strong following among die-hard fans.
So the big question now is this: which platform will work best for you? What about when an unexpected dark horse enters the picture?
Digital Wearable Gadgets
Digital wearable tech started to enter the mainstream consciousness in 2013, with the promise of integrating smartphone technology to your wrist. Even more exciting is the potential for augmented and virtual reality to jump out of the movies and into real life. This is thanks to Google touting its Glass AR glasses and the Oculus’ Rift virtual reality headset getting bought up by Facebook. Add to that the massive existing capabilities of devices hooked up to wireless Internet access and the functionality of digital gadgets gets a major boost.
The problem with these electric-powered wearable gadgets is that they are still a nascent industry. Early attempts to rush out smart watches were frustrated by negative reviews that cited dreadfully low battery times, poor ergonomics and clunky aesthetics. The AR and VR systems are still in development and look like they will need more time before they are ready for commercial release. We will still have to wait and see if any new offerings offer enough to become as vital as the smart phone and tablet is to the average consumer.
Mechanical Wearable Gadgets
This tried-and-true technology has had hundreds of years to find the perfect fit between form and function. The result is a line of gizmos that not only accurately tell the time but also comes in an aesthetically pleasing package marked with class and elegance. Many modern mechanical watches are powered either by the natural movements of your arm as you walk or by batteries with enough of a charge to last for a few years.
The problem with mechanical, however, is that they can only handle one task: telling the time. Their magnificent form and claustrophobic functionality prevents them from becoming anything more than dedicated timepieces. Those searching for added functionality will often find themselves unsatisfied with what mechanical watches have to offer.
Hybrid Mechanical-Electric Gadgets
There are attempts to blend electric and mechanical functionalities into a single line of wearable gadgets. These wearable gizmos are at their core mechanical watches, with all the form and fashion that comes with them. Their PMOLED screens, however, are switched on only when smart functions are being accessed. This help keeps power consumption low; allowing the smart watch to be used for extended periods of time without requiring a recharge every few hours.
This holds the most promising compromise between the aesthetic and time-telling function of mechanical watches while still availing of the expanded functionality offered by smart phones. The offerings are, however, extremely slim and are still in development. So we basically have to give these hybrid smart accessories more time to see if they can live up to the expectations.
The Bottom Line
If checking emails, watching videos, augmenting reality and diving into virtual reality are priorities for you, you will definitely want to keep tabs on the development of digital wearable gadgets. Give the technology a few years and the kinks ought to be ironed out enough for the technology to become as useful as tablets and smart phones.
If you seek a classy and elegant addition to your wardrobe, mechanical watches are the best choice to go. You can also keep tabs on the development of hybrid digital-mechanical watches to see if they can deliver the same elegance while adding more functionality at the same time. Who knows? Maybe this line of wearable gadgets would be the next step in the evolution of the mechanical timepiece!