For the past couple years Kickstarter has been a great launching ground for many wearable tech companies. Let’s take Pebble, for example. Having set a goal of $100,000 they ended up raising $10,266,845 and now they are leading the smart watch market as we mentioned in the previous post.
What’s more, comparing to other categories on Kickstarter, the odds of succeeding at a wearable project are pretty high. So far, 69% of wearable projects have been funded in 2014 vs. 40% in 2013 and 44% in 2012. There are many that even exceed their funding targets. Thus, during their campaign Pebble was overfunded by 10,267% and its not the only exception.
Today we’d like to highlight the 6 top wearable health & fitness related projects on Kickstarter which have succeeded in 2014. They gained vast popularity, were fully funded (with some being even overfunded) and can definitely become a great addition to your every day life.
Wearables for better fitness
Wearable technology is changing the way we exercise and communicate. Although, when we think of wearables for fitness, the first thing that pops up in the mind is probably a smartband (with Fitbit or Jawbone leading the fitness smartbands market). Apple Watch, which will be up for sale in 2015, promises to bring this to another level. However, wearables for fitness are not limited to smartbands, and today we’d like to highlight the projects that can offer you a totally new experience.
FreeWavz provides the first smart earphones for fitness. They are a perfect choice for training at the gym (100% wire-free, built-in heart rate and fitness monitoring, all the data will be synced to their app), and outdoors (ear plugs are fully sweat/water resistant). The cool thing bout FreeWavz is that they separate the outside noise and the music, so if you are biking, you’ll hear the cars approaching which is much safer. First products will be released in October, so hurry up.
runScribe (runScribe: Wearable for the Data-Driven Athlete) is a lightweight running wearable that mounts on the back of your shoe and provides a 3D view of how you run. It’s a great helper for both casual runners and and running-obsessed geeks. While other running technologies offer limited information (merely tracking steps, distance and speed), runScribe collects such measurements as pace, running surface, stride and many others, so it can help many people from running-related injuries.
Kymira, a science lead sportswear company from the UK, had developed a unique reactive sports apparel. According to the feedback from their client, many of whom were professional athletes, Kymira’s fabric does almost magical things and helps to increase blood circulation, tissue oxygen level, muscle relaxation and boost energy production. The apparel is enriched with 13 minerals that help turn human energy (basically, heat our bodies produce) into the infrared energy with has a healing effect on a body. The apparel proved to be so effective, that a number of athletes will wear it at the 2016 Olympics.
Wearables for better sleep
Still tossing and turning in your bed? Well, now you can definitely improving your sleep and health by having these assistive gadgets for better sleep and lucid dreaming. Wearables for sleep also integrate with your smartphone, so can get some valuable insights from massive data they track as well.
NeuroOn was designed to work as a sleep mask and neural sensor, so the system tracks when you are in deep REM sleep and slowly wake you up at the right moment. This way you wake up totally refreshed and spend your time on sleeping very efficiently. What’s more, it can help you with the cat naps during the day as it can quickly help you fall asleep and then wake up when you are most alert. The last minute offer for NeuroOn is $165, so don’t miss your chance for a better sleep.
On the other hand, Aurora is not just a sleeping mask but rather a dream enhancing handband. By measuring brainwave, eye-movement activity and tracking body movements, it can help you see unbelievably cool colourful dreams. During your sleep, the Aurora headband lights and sounds for lucid dreaming (always wanted to fight that dragon, hah?). Colour therapy is fast advancing branch in medicine (by the way, Intellectsoft has recently released a colour therapy related app — ColourBoost). What’s more, experts say that people who lucid dream regularly experience fewer nightmares and lower levels of stress and anxiety. No wonder that Aurora got 265% overfunded on Kickstarter.
If the previous two gadgets didn’t help you get a better sleep, then you are probably drowsy and yawning. Then it’s time to check out Vigo — the very first energy gauge that will keep you awake. Vigo tracks patterns in your blinks and in your body’s movement to quantify how alert you are in real time. When “sleepiness” is detected, Vigo can give you a “nudge” (by sending a very light electro shock, a soft vibration or a sound). It can be quite helpful while driving, studying or at a very “interesting” meeting. Based on the data device collects, Vigo can also give you recommendations on when is the best time to take a nap. This way you stay the most alert and productive when you need to be.
According to the recent Nielsen report, 36 million adult Americans currently own and use some form of wearable technology. These devices becoming less geeky and more mainstream. Changing lifestyle for billions of people every day, their impact increases from generation to generation. Thus, 48% of current wearable owners in the USA are under 34 years old. These facts and the fact that the overall wearable market is growing around 20% with year suggest that we’ll continue to see growth in this sector at least another 3—5 years. Already Nielsen states that “nearly half of Americans surveyed expressed their interest in purchasing wearable tech in the near future.” So, Kickstarter we are waiting for the new “it” in wearables!