Last week the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas opened its doors to 152,000 attendees. The internationally renowned electronics & technology trade show attracts global attention from major companies worldwide.
In recent years ubiquitous wearable technology has become increasingly popular with companies such Jawbone and Nike, who released the Nike + FuelBand early last year. This activity tracker has been highly praised by the Apple CEO Tim Cook, which has lead to much online discussion about the future of wearable technology & healthcare.
This year at CES manufactures were eager to showcase the latest wearable technology. Sony announced Core which not only logs your bodies physical activities such as heart rate, steps taken etc. But also social and environmental factors which get logged in your own personal life journal on Sony's Lifelog App.
Another interesting development is the Lumo Lift, this tiny device clips to your shirt and records information on your posture. The device can be set to alert your attention when it detects that you are slouching or putting unnecessary strain on your spine.
However the real show stopper in terms of wearable technology came from Ekso Bionics . Who showcased Ekso, a wearable bionic suit which enables individuals with lower body weakness or paraplegia to stand and walk.
The demonstration was part of the event entitled How Digital Health Saved My Life and demonstrating the exoskeleton was Paul Thacker, a professional snowmobile racer who in 2010 had a serious accident which left him paraplegic.
At present, Ekso only assists users in walking forward and sharp maneuvers present a technical as well as demanding physical challenge for wearers which is why for this demonstration, Paul was being chaperoned closely.
The future of wearable technology and healthcare has the potential to change peoples lives in a meaningful way. Work is under way to develop a new generation of ingestible sensors and implantable chips. These sensors will be able to report on our well being at a biological level. Enabling people to take a more intimate and proactive approach to their own health care.