The 11th Wearable Technologies Conference, the world’s leading conference for the entire wearable technology ecosystem, wrapped up Tuesday. Hosting more than 400 attendees from all over the world and offering an unprecedented mix of new technologies and products, the conference was a full success, proving that wearables are the biggest trend of this year – and will play an important role in our lives in the years to come.
Newest technologies, the biggest brands and the most innovative start-ups, the two days were filled with new trends, product demonstrations, and networking opportunities. With its buzzing atmosphere attendees were able to discuss the future of this thriving market. Sponsors Intel, Samsung, Sony, Continua Health Alliance together with Roche, Rochester Optical, ST Microelectronics, Texas Instruments presented their take on wearable technologies as well as their newest projects. Sony Mobile, Applied Materials, Fitbit, and Bosch were among the speakers. The area around the conference rooms was taken by HzO, 4iiii, Conductr, the DFKI and 20 of the 24 Innovation World Cup finalists and many more who presented their innovations on site.
Many attending companies presented their products at the Wearable Technologies Conference for the first time in Europe; some even launched their products at the conference, underlining the importance of the Wearable Technologies Conference. Tim Moore, Director of Technology at Rochester Optical launched RO GOLD, premiering the prescription glasses for Google Glass on stage. Another first was Simon Tian’s presentation of the Pine smartwatch in Europe. The founder and CEO of Neptune spoke for the first time at a conference of this caliber. Sony Mobile revealed the Sony “Core” at the conference for the first time in Europe as well. And Playtabase revealed the wristband Reemo. Muhammad Abdurrahman, Founder and CEO, presented the gesture-based remote for all kinds of electronic devices for the first time ever. Athos’ new product was also presented for the first time in Europe. And the Wearable Technologies Conference will be the only conference featuring the Angel Sensor by Seraphim Sense in 2014.
Microchip Technology’s Dr. Roland Aubauer showed a new touchless gesture interface with 3D gesture recognition and 4D hand tracking. Roland used his technology during his presentation, wearing a watch-like wristband that translated his movements precisely and fast.
Another highlight was the awarding of the WT Innovator of the Year during the first day of the conference. Out of 24 finalists, the category winners were announced and awarded, as was the overall winner, Moticon.
Samsung of course can’t be left out if talking about wearables. Stylianos Mamagkakis, Samsung Semiconductor Europe, shares Christian Stammel’s opinion that the market will explode in 2014, and introduced Samsung’s new processors. Stylianos also showed fantastic demo units of ultrathin curved OLED displays. Intel ‘s Neil Cox asked the questions what innovations we can think of as technology develops and how we can integrate more features into one device, and announced Intel’s “Make it Wearable” challenge for new solutions built on their processor technology. Neil described the huge opportunities in the wearables market with connected devices growing at a rate of 300% per year. This was underlined by the panel discussion “Growth potential of the wearables market” with Wearable Technologies Harry Strasser. In this discussion Josh Flood from ABI Research presented ABI’s prediction, that wearable devices will be growing from 50 million in 2013 to 90 million in 2014.
Christian Stammel, Founder and CEO of Wearable Technologies, dubbed 2014 the year of wearables. However, he does believe future growth still has a few hurdles to overcome, one of which is retail. Christian is convinced that being successful in the wearables industry is about more than the best hardware only: “This race will be won by the one company that has the largest and best cloud service; the hardware is just an entry point”. Wrapping up the conference, Christian Stammel indicated that consumer demand for wearables is on the rise, which will further accelerate technological developments in all kinds of fields.
To sum it up, the Wearable Technologies Conference Europe was the perfect mix of new technologies and product presentations, addressing vendors, distributors, investors, and developers alike. So, don’t miss our next conferences in San Francisco in July and Singapore in September – be part of the leading conference dedicated to wearable technology.