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Digital Trends in Creative Update, May 2013




7.6.2013

Brrr, winter is well and truly upon us, so why not wrap up warm, sit down with a nice hot drink and enjoy the latest digital trends. We'll be talking wearable technology in our everyday lives, some crazy new tech as the visual revolution continues -  more than enough to snuggle up to we hope…
 
So what's hot in the world of wearable technology?
We're not talking internet connected onesies, but not far off. We all seem to have our mobile phones glued to our hands these days, from the moment we wake, throughout the day, and with so much to do, wouldn't a little hands-free activity help? Here is three of the hottest wearable tech of the moment to do just that.
 
1. Google Glass
By now I'm sure you've all heard about Google Glass – if not, here's an explanation from the lovely people at Google. If this type of parody is anything to go by – I'm not sure anyone takes this product seriously though. Aside from some potential privacy issues, which can still apply to mobile for that matter, there are some obvious uses that people should engage with and take seriously.
 
User Generated Content (UCG) – as you will know from my last post content is such a big part of what  drives success and if it is unique, compelling content you're creating then you're on to a winner. Look at GoPro where first-person cameras have become the norm looking for the next Felix Baumgartner to blow our mind. Let's hope constant use doesn't blow our retina! Let’s see how long it takes Google Glass to  capture some of the GoPro market.
 
Remote access – the medical possibilities are endless and given the vastness of the Australian Outback it could mean the difference between life and death. Google Glass means we would no longer have to rely on Skippy the Bush Kangaroo (fond memories) to be ‘first-on-the-scene’. Real-time specialist medical assistance would be on hand to advise how to best treat the patient.
 
The success of Google Glass depends on its ease of integration with all of Google’s  product offerings, the quality of the optics and perhaps more importantly, design; how it looks on. No matter how useful the functionality or how cool the end-results are, it’s about style over substance.

2. Apple iWatch
The rumour mill has been in overdrive in anticipation of the latest Apple product launch, expected to be announced next week. I think this product could be Apple’s next triumph, and boy do they need it. As long as they include some sort of Bluetooth headphones, for those runners out there, I think it might just work.
 
3. Nike & Fuel band
Nike's latest device isn't a new concept, but its execution is very nice indeed – an easy way to track your body's activity through goal setting in the guise of a stylish bracelet. All the usual social connections will help you and your friends get fit, and stay that way.
 
Was all that too pedestrian for you?
If you fancy being a little more superhuman, why don't you try the touchscreen t-shirt? No – not super enough? Well how about your very own Spidey Suit? Too obvious – maybe an Iron Man style mask) is more your style? Maybe this is all a little too hot? If so – here's some other cool stuff:
 
Touching, feeling and controlling with more than a piece of glass.
When it comes to playing with a responsive  screen alone, the options can still be somewhat limited. Here's three ways that inventors are exploring a deeper tactile experience to expand those options and give customers true feedback.
 
1. Touch – Imagine what it would be like to actually feel materials through a digital device? Imagine no longer, Katherine Kuchenbecker has invented a way to do just that with the technology of touch
 
2. Feeling – One market that really hasn't been tapped into is smart devices for the Accessibility market. In a world first, Sumut Dagar is developing a Braille Smartphone, where messages appear through a set of pins to be read by the visually-impaired. Genius!
 
3. Controlling – Perhaps inspired by Minority Report, no longer science-fiction, you can quite literally rock and roll your world by wirelessly controlling your devices through an armband that recognises your muscle activity
 
Seen enough?
Here’s some more visual paradigms emerging in all your favourite places. The New York Times beta is out (by lucky invite only) and it's looking pretty slick, focused content without clutter. Flickr recently bought by Yahoo! has re-launched its platform with a new look, and Gmail has simplified its interface to be tabbed and easier to navigate.
 
Time to farewell this post – I’ll catch you next time for some special snuggly email warmers.

 

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