i3 - May/June 2017 - 29

APPAREL IS THE
NEW "WEARABLE"

Technology
that changes
everything
really just
gives us more
of what we
already love.
By Bill Nottingham

News about wearable devices
seems to be caught in a perpetual hype-backlash loop. Each
new device that fails to catch on
beyond the early adopters generates a wave of analysis noting
the flaws that seem so obvious
in hindsight. Functionality and
usefulness are not the key criteria. The fundamental challenge
for developing wearables is
the showiness factor. Some
people want to be seen wearing cutting-edge gadgets
on their faces or wrists or
pro-truding from their ears.
Most people don't. (You may
recall the term "Glass-hole.")
This presents tech companies
with a dilemma outside their
core competencies, but there
is an industry that has wrestled
with that dynamic for centuries:
fashion. This is why the most
significant advances in wearables, at least in terms of adoption, probably will come from
clothing and footwear companies. The true wearable is one
you're already wearing.
Under Armour straddles
two industries, fashion and
fitness, and in the latter there's
a long history of introducing
expensive, high-end products
for elite users that generate
widespread demand. The
company signaled its move
toward tech three years ago
with the "Future Girl" video. But since then
the vision has become clearer. At CES 2016,
the company introduced Healthbox, which
included a data-collecting wristband with
touchscreen, a heart monitor that straps on
the user's chest and a scale. At CES 2017,
Under Armour rolled out newer, lighter versions of footwear with sensors to help athletes determine the type of
workout they need that day.
All of the gadgets sync with
Sony's Xperia
the UA Record app.
Projector

ENHANCE LIVES
the success of Star Wars, which disrupted the movie industry and
entertainment in general, more than anything before or since. But
why? I believe the answer is in the balance of competing forces
- the story was new but also familiar, the visuals were ambitious
but accessible, the "universe" was contained but endlessly scalable.
Anyone could imagine themselves living there, and that simple
urge, more than anything, fuels the seemingly endless demand for
more stories and merchandise.
Star Wars,, obviously, is an outlier. But striking a balance between
competing forces is important for any company that wants to disrupt a market with a new product, platform or service. In recent
months, we've seen that potential in many spaces. Here are a few.
C TA . t e c h / i 3

MAY/JUNE 2017

29


http://www.underarmour.com http://www.CTA.tech/i3

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of i3 - May/June 2017

Contents
i3 - May/June 2017 - Cover1
i3 - May/June 2017 - Cover2
i3 - May/June 2017 - Contents
i3 - May/June 2017 - 2
i3 - May/June 2017 - 3
i3 - May/June 2017 - 4
i3 - May/June 2017 - 5
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i3 - May/June 2017 - 50
i3 - May/June 2017 - 51
i3 - May/June 2017 - 52
i3 - May/June 2017 - Cover3
i3 - May/June 2017 - Cover4
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20190910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20190708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20190506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20190304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20190102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20181112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20180910
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20180708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20180506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20180304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20180102
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20171112
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170910
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20160102
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20160506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20160708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/i3_20170102
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