Wearables Get Smaller And Smarter

By Andrea Chang, Alejandra Reyes-Velarde And David Pierson
Los Angeles Times

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) One of the products generating the most buzz at this year’s Consumer Electronic’s show is L’Oreal’s UV Sense, a wearable electronic UV sensor affixed to a user’s thumbnail. The small, battery-free dot, 9 millimeters in diameter and less than 2 millimeters thick, measures individual UV exposure and is designed to be worn for up to two weeks.

Los Angeles Times

First there were fitness wearables. Then the focus turned to fashionable wearables. The latest evolution, seen throughout this week’s CES in Las Vegas: more functional, futuristic, and sometimes far-fetched, wearables.

Wrist-worn wearables were a huge hit at the trade show four years ago, as tech makers showed off fitness trackers and smartwatches that monitored steps taken, stairs climbed and calories burned. The technology went on to become enormously popular among consumers, with an estimated 310 million wearable devices sold worldwide last year.

Now, some wearables are moving away from the wrist and becoming smaller and smarter.

“We’re seeing lots of not obvious usage scenarios, but once you start to really think about it, it makes perfect sense,” Brian Blau, research vice president for personal technologies at market research firm Gartner, said in an interview from CES, which ends Friday.

One of the products generating the most buzz at this year’s show is L’Oreal’s UV Sense, a wearable electronic UV sensor affixed to a user’s thumbnail. The small, battery-free dot, 9 millimeters in diameter and less than 2 millimeters thick, measures individual UV exposure and is designed to be worn for up to two weeks.

The beauty giant said it was tapping into the increasing popularity of nail art as well as consumers’ concerns over the harmful effects of sun exposure. Calling the combination “beauty tech,” Guive Balooch, head of L’Oreal’s Technology Incubator, said the company wanted its wearables to be simple and “livable.”

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