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Remember When Wearable Was Just A Word?

Intel’s Make It Wearable Contest Finalists

Remember when the word wearable was just, well, a word? Today, that word embraces a market, an industry, a lifestyle, a livelihood, even a future. Individuals and companies are looking to push the idea that circuits, screens and spandex can help augment and improve how humanity interacts with the world.

If you are not familiar with wearable technology, here is a crash course. Wearable technology or wearables is any technology that is worn on the body and that aids the person wearing it. Examples include fitness sensors such as the Nike FuelBand or FitBit that tally steps, count calories or provide biofeedback. It also includes personal computing such as Google Glass or the Apple Watch, even clothing with built in sensors that measure muscle activity. You get the idea.

The future is still technically uncertain in the wearable world as mass adoption is one of the big questions, but some view it as an opportunity to leapfrog the competition by catching what they view as the next wave of computing. Mass chip maker, Intel, is one of those companies. The Silicon Valley giant recently threw its hat in the ring in a big way by sponsoring the contest and advertising campaign called “Make it Wearable.” Finalists of the contest have recently been announced, already receiving notoriety and press after their selection from a significant number of entrants.

Among the top ten finalists are some winning ideas that we think have real potential to change the world, or at least make it entertaining. Below are a few highlights.

Open Biotics – Low-Cost Robotic Hand

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.09.27 PMIn an instant, war conditions, disease, or accidents can change a person’s life by taking their hand or rendering it useless. With advances in technology, robotic prosthetics can be rendered, but at what cost? Open Biotics has developed a wearable prosthetic that can replicate advanced technology for less than a $1,000. Such advancement has the potential to change the health situations in developing countries.

BLOCKS – Snapable Platform

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.10.09 PMThe wrist is popular real estate in the wearable world, but why own seven watches when you can own one? BLOCK has built an innovative platform that allows you to swap out watch components when you need them. Heart rate monitor for a run, classic time piece for an elegant event, you get the idea.

Nixie – Flyable & Wearable Camera

Screen Shot 2014-10-07 at 2.09.51 PMOf all of the finalists, Nixie has probably received the most attention. The mini drone unfolds on command and will capture that perfect aerial selfie. While sounding narcissistic, the technology and idea is unique and may lead to more innovations.

HZO is excited to see where these and other wearable products go. Like Intel, HZO is committed to working with wearable technology companies to help protect their innovations from liquids, the elements and corrosion, enabling them to be truly wearable, around the clock. Underwater selfie anyone?

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