words Alexa Wang
When Apple first introduced its own version of a smartwatch back in 2015, the most common form of wearable technology had been the niche market of fitness trackers up to that point.
But with the release of the Apple Watch, the iPhone maker immediately catapulted wearable tech into the mainstream – raising consumer awareness of such products. Apple knows what its lead demographic likes, and aside from its modern, sleek designs, it unveils product ranges that are ultimately aspirational.
The same applies to the Apple Watch; the device combines great product design with health-focused capabilities like fitness tracking, as well as integration with Apple’s wider ecosystem of apps and accessories. This approach has led industry experts to applaud the company’s ability to produce fashion meets function, unveiling a high-end smartwatch that many people would love to own.
Does Wearable Tech Qualify as Fashion?
Mobile phones these days must do many things. They must work as a phone, a camera, an address book, a web browser, and also – as the brand loyalty for the iPhone demonstrates – a fashion statement.
However, as with many fashion-forward designs, one thing that has barred many from owning aspirational product such as the iPhone is the price. Yet retailers such as Mobile Phones Direct have been quick to address this issue, offering iPhone deals as well as refurbished phones for sale. The drive to own iPhone is clear, and although this naturally has a lot to do with the quality of the devices, this urge also stems from a clear love for the brand.
Apple has done well with sales of the Apple Watch, and the smartwatch’s success has seen other companies in the sector follow the firm’s approach. Not only does wearable tech need to carry out tasks such as monitoring your health, it has to look good too. As noted before, this is something that Apple does well and is justifiable considering users will be wearing the gadgets for long periods of time and in public.
Half of Wearables Owners Quickly Lose Interest
Another area in which products are increasingly being designed in terms of both form and function, is the activity tracker space. The products most commonly look like bracelets, but despite the important jobs they are made to carry out, manufacturers also must ensure they are aesthetically pleasing. This fashion-led approach may be the reason some stats suggest wearers lose interest in tech like fitness trackers after a short space of time.
Research shows that 50% of users lose interest in their wearable tech within a few months of buying them. Wearables as a fashion item makes sense from a commercial point of view, but unfortunately when the lustre of a new gadget wears off, many consumers are losing interest despite the many benefits they stand to gain.
It would seem not even fancy new gadgets have enough motivational powers to keep us going, particularly when it comes to health and fitness, but the trend of wearables also being a fashion statement is here to stay. Apple has pioneered this approach and for now, the Apple Watch remains the pinnacle to which other wearable tech manufacturers must aspire to.