Wearable Technologies News Roundup – August

Samsung presents Standalone Smartwatch

Just a few days before the international electronics trade show IFA, Samsung unveiled a new kind of smartwatch which works independently from smartphones. The Gear S has a built in 3G mobile connection, WiFi and Bluetooth and can handle calls with its built in speaker and microphone. The smartwatch features a 1 GHz dual core processor, comes with a curved two inch super AMOLED display and runs on Tizen as its operating system. Besides the new Gear S Samsung also presented the Gear Circle, a new pair of earbuds which can be worn as a necklace if not in use. Samsung’s rival LG also already announced a new smartwatch, the G Watch R with a round watch face. Same as with LG’s rectangular smartwatch which has come to the market earlier this year, the round model will also run on Android Wear.

Wearables one of the Top Trends at IFA in Berlin

International electronic trade show IFA is around the corner and there are already a lot of rumors and pre-announcements about new wearables that will be presented. Even though LG and Samsung have already unveiled new smartwatches ahead of the show, Samsung might still have the third generation of its Tizen based smartwatch Galaxy Gear to announce. Sony is expected to present the third generation of its smartwatch, which according to 9to5google should run on Android Wear. When it comes to smartwatches, newcomers HTC and Asus might also soon join the competition. Asus already presented some images of its ZenWatch. HTC might not just unveil a smartwatch but also a fitness tracker. New activity trackers will also be presented by Mio, the company behind the first sports watch with an optical heart rate sensor. For both, smartwatches and activity trackers, we are expecting much more announcements from established brands and new competitors. In other wearable categories we might also see a lot of innovation such as Samsung’s virtual reality goggles Gear VR.

Epson launches Activity Trackers and GPS Watches

Epson recently introduced its line of activity trackers and GPS watches to the US and European markets. The new product category had already been for sale in Japan and will become available in many other countries this September. Epson’s Pulsense series comprises two activity trackers with built in optical heart-rate sensors for continuous pulse monitoring. For runners, Epson has developed four GPS watches, the top model also features the optical heart rate sensor. The GPS watches come with a feature called Smart Stride that lets runners analyze their stride length and frequency.

Epson Pulsense

Ralph Lauren brings Smart Textiles to the Fashion World

Fashion brand Ralph Lauren announced a smart shirt that is capable of measuring heart rate, breathing rate and stress levels. The high-tech sports shirt has been developed in partnership with OM Signal and will become available in Ralph Lauren’s stores and on the company’s website. Vital signs will be wirelessly transmitted to a smartphone app via Bluetooth 4.0. Ralph Lauren is the first lifestyle brand to introduce smart textiles to its customers.

Image: Ralph Lauren, Epson