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Ericsson: Wearables may replace smartphone in IoT era

Ericsson: Wearables may replace smartphone in IoT era
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Wearables might replace smartphones thereby helping consumers interact with physical things and objects in the Internet of things (IoT) era, a new report by Ericsson ConsumerLab has predicted.

[quote font=”georgia” font_size=”22″ font_style=”italic” align=”left” arrow=”yes”]”Early signs of detachment from smartphones are visible today with 40 percent of today’s smartwatch users already interacting less with their smartphones.” [/quote]The report titled “Wearable technology and the Internet of things”, which captures the opinions of 5,000 smartphone users (of which 2,500 are wearable users) says that ownership of wearable among smartphone users in the surveyed markets has doubled in the past year.

However, consumers predict it will take at least another year for the current generation of wearables to go mainstream

The integration of smartphones into every aspect of daily life makes it hard to envisage a future without them, the report authors say.

smartphone
Mobile phones on display at ikeja Computer Village in Lagos

As wearables get smarter and more independent in terms of factors such as connectivity, the smartphone screen may become less significant. Thirty-eight percent of smartphone users say wearables will be used to perform most smartphone functions within just five years.

According to the report, wearable technology will accelerate the convergence of the digital and human worlds, by bringing people into the (IoT) era.

Furthermore, while consumers are confident that wearable technology will help them interact with objects in their surroundings, they also say that this technology may not necessarily be devices.

The report says that 60 percent believe that ingestible pills and chips under the skin will be commonly used in the next five years, not only to track vital health data, but also to unlock doors, authenticate transactions and identity and to control objects.

Display of wearable device
Display of wearable device

Already today, 25 percent of smartwatch owners use their smartwatch to remotely control other digital devices at home and 30 percent use voice search on their smartwatches, according to the report.

The Ericsson report also reveals that six in ten smartphone users state that wearables have uses beyond health and wellness, stressing that devices related to personal safety and security, such as panic buttons and personal locators, attract most interest.

Jasmeet Sing Sethi, Consumer Insight Expert, Ericsson ConsumerLab, says: “Although consumers show greatest interest in devices related to safety, we also see an openness to wearable technology further away from today’s generation. In five years’ time, walking around with an ingestible sensor, which tracks your body temperature and adjusts the thermostat setting automatically once you arrive home, may be a reality.”

Top five most wanted wearable across five markets surveyed by the Ericsson ConsumerLab include: panic/SOS button (32%), smartwatch (28%), wearable location tracker (27%), identity authenticator (25%) and wearable water purifier (24%).

“Early signs of detachment from smartphones are visible today with 40 percent of today’s smartwatch users already interacting less with their smartphones,” Singh Sethi adds.

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Donatus Anichukwueze Technology Writer at Technology Times Media e-mail: donatus.anichukwueze@technologytimes.ng

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