Here’s Why I Think Wearables Are Overrated

May 20, 2014 wearable @TheRoyaleIndia 641 0 0

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Products improve with time. You can see that the desktop computers are being replaced by sleek All-In-Ones. Laptops are making way for Ultrabooks, and LCDs have completely killed the CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) TVs. This is all good until these companies become greedy and create an unnecessary product category. With aggressive marketing, these large corporations then brainwash the consumers to buy their products. That’s exactly what’s happening in the consumer wearable tech space right now. Yes, I’m talking about the so called “smart” watches and futuristic Google Glass. No matter how cool they look in ads and promos, here are a few points why I think these gadgets are gadgets are a waste of money.

Current Crop Of Wearables Make You Look Stupid

smartwatch @TheRoyaleIndia

You may not care too much about how your smartphone looks, because it spends most of the time in your pocket or purse. On the other hand, smartwatches and Google Glass are meant to be worn, somewhat like jewellery. Sadly, almost all the currently available smartwatches look clunky. If that wasn’t bad enough, answering a call on smartwatch makes you look as if you’re talking to your own hand (wrist to be precise). Google Glass isn’t much different either. It looks like a fancy hearing aid. Moreover, operating it makes you appear like an absolute douchebag. For example, you have to wink your right eye to snap a photograph. Bobble your head to wake up the device. I’m not making it up, these are actual instructions from Google’s official product page.

These Devices Aren’t Really Useful

notification @TheRoyaleIndia

Smartwatches and VR (Virtual Reality) headsets mostly work as smartphone companions. Using these gadgets, you get notifications without taking the phone out of your pocket. However, in order to reply or modify anything you have to turn to your smartphone. Well, Google Glass does offer an option to revert a message using voice commands, but those who have ever used Google now would know how flaky that is. Even if the speech-recognition tech is improved, it still won’t work properly in noisy areas. So basically you’re shelling out the hard earned money to purchase an expensive gadget that doesn’t even offer half the functionality of your smartphone.

Privacy Goes For A Toss

privacy @TheRoyaleIndia

Thanks to the onboard cameras, these gadgets are godsend for the stalkers and peeping toms around the world. These people can follow you (in real life, not Twitter) and record your every move. If this doesn’t frighten you, imagine that you’re in a washroom and someone enters with Google’s Glass on. I’m sure we all know where such images and videos end-up these days. While people can also misuse smartphones this way, it’s easy to spot someone pointing a mobile phone camera at you. In case of Wearables, non-users have no idea what these wannabe nerds are doing with these gadgets. Acknowledging this nuisance, many bars and restaurants in the US have banned wearable devices in their premises. With Governments around the world wanting to snoop on its citizens, these devices will soon become an easy tool for them to access your information.

Battery Issue

battery @TheRoyaleIndia

Having used Sony and Samsung’s smartwatches, I can tell that these gadgets only last for about 8 hours on a single charge. As reported by the International media, Google Glass’s battery life is barely 5 hours. For any device to be practically useful, it should work for a day without needing a recharge. If you hate charging your smartphone every day, imagine how annoying it would be plug in these “futuristic” gadgets after few hours of usage. At this rate, these wearable will probably spend more time on the desk than your body. So, even if you like the idea behind these gadgets, you should wait for the manufacturers to fix offer more acceptable battery life before spending money.

I hope it’s now clear that wearable tech in its current form is quite useless for normal people. For the amount of money you spend, these fancy gadgets might give you some bragging rights. You might even consider yourself elite after wearing them. However, don’t expect it to simplify your life just yet.

Categories: Technology/ Reviews
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