Each year, SXSW, a mecca for anyone who lives and breathes technology, music, and film, launches new digital trends that get our juices flowing. After all, in 2007, the festival single handedly helped to boost Twitter into the giant it is today, and Foursquare three years later.
One of this year’s themes highlighted the rise of entertainment apps. Fandango’s “Fanticipation” app tracks moviegoer interest of new movies on its mobile and web platform, prior to its weekend-box office opening. Movie lovers can gain an insight on movie performance levels without having to wait until after the weekend.
What is the trend that really took over…
But for those of you who enjoy burning calories rather than munching on popcorn at the movies, you will love The Quantified Self trend that was a major theme at this year’s festival. The movement represents a crossbreed between data analysis and wearable technology, with a focus on the individual and his or her personalized health.
But what about apps like Livestrong?
The difference is, a product like BodyMedia’s is actually wearable and measured in real-time: an armband that gathers physiological information, collects 5000 data points per minute, and converts this information into more meaningful measurements, like sleep quality, metabolic efficiency, and calories burned. Impressive, huh? This is just one example of a tracking advice that is making data more actionable by truly impacting our decisions and behaviors.
What are Google and Apple doing?
Naturally, Google and Apple have been players in the wearable technology game for awhile. Everyone is really excited about Google Glasses and Apple iWatch (rivalry, anyone?) and both projects are making huge headlines. Google’s other initiative, a smart watch, is rumored to potentially end smart phones – pause for reaction. With the capabilities to give direction, retrieve product information, and display e-mail notifications, everyone could be wearing these watches before we know it. It could be argued that the consumer market is ready for something different, and wearable technology could definitely be the next big hit.
How far do YOU think wearable technology will go?