By Wares October 26, 2016 Wearables, personal care & health

Young designers – what nerve!

Young designer Spencer Buchanan has the Nerve to make a difference.

What better way to kick off this category than acknowledging a young Kiwi inventor who has designed “Nerve” – a concussion detecting mouth guard (photo right).

Anyone who has played rugby, any contact sport or watched Will Smith’s movie Concussion will be aware of the risk.

The top prize in the New Zealand leg of the James Dyson Award, the annual global product design competition that celebrates the next generation of design engineers unanimously went to Spencer Buchanan, a 22 year-old Massey University industrial design graduate.

His innovative mouth guard with motion sensors worn by rugby players identifies concussion risks after the player has taken a rough knock.

It wirelessly tells the team doctor’s iPad or tablet whether the player should return to play.

Spencer takes a prize of $4,000 to help commercialise his invention.



Healthy benefits for wearables

We’ve seen car insurance companies offer discounts for cars carrying dashcams, now we’re seeing financial rather than just fitness perks for wearables wearers!

Aetna for example is offering subsidies with Apple Watches. The healthcare insurance provider announced a number of different iOS-only apps aimed at streamlining the healthcare management process.

It’s also providing the Apple Watch for all of its 50,000 employees and offering a “significant” subsidy for customers who have the wearable.

The watch will be tied into Aetna’s wellness reimbursement plan, offering cash backs based on customer activity levels.

So – keep up that step count or not just your health but also your wallet may suffer!



Vidal Sassoon Fashion Straight and Trim Buddy

For precise digital temperature control at your fingertips, Fashion Straight hair straighteners (VSLE900A) let you select from 9 temperatures according to your hair type, a digital LCD screen with touch controls for ease of use and 29% longer ceramic plates for faster styling with hair protection. There’s no waiting with only 30 seconds to reach instant heat, a bonus Cosmetic Bag and Heat Mat. You’ll be straight in no time.

For hairy guys, Trim Buddy (VSM702A) is the essential personal trimmer for finishing touch-ups with a lithium battery for long-life. Use it for precision trimming and finishing touches on sideburns, eyebrows, neckline, beard & stubble. There’s a rotary blade for nose & ear hair trimming so you can safely remove hair with no nicks, cuts or pulling. It also comes with 2 comb guides for at-length trimming (4mm & 7mm).


Apple Watch Nike+ and Airpods

Apple continues to have a stake in wearables with the Apple Watch Nike+, pairing exclusive Nike Sport Bands with the Apple Watch Series 2, which features GPS, a two-times-brighter display, water resistance to 50 meters, a powerful dual-core processor and watchOS 3. Apple Watch Nike+ also includes Siri commands and iconic Nike watch faces along with the new Nike+ Run Club app, including coaching plans and guidance from the world’s best coaches and athletes.

In headphones, Apple AirPods, launched with the latest iPhone, are the innovative new wireless headphones that use advanced technology to reinvent how we listen to music, make phone calls, enjoy TV shows and movies, play games and interact with Siri. AirPods eliminate the hassles of wireless headphones and with one tap, they are instantly set up and ready to work with your iPhone or Apple Watch. AirPods can intelligently and seamlessly switch from a call on your iPhone to listening to music on your Apple Watch. They’ll be available later this month.


Fitbit Charge 2

August saw Fitbit announce a raft of updates to its offerings, with the biggest updates reserved for its top sellers. Charge 2 for example has a larger display and a modular design allowing you to swap bands. Also new is heart tracking and more fitness metrics, like VO2 Max. There’s also GPS for route mapping and pacing/distance tracking. Should be as popular if not more popular than the original.


Garmin fēnix Chronos, Face-It and Forerunner 235

New to Garmin, fēnix Chronos adds luxury and style to multisport training. This premium version of its popular multisport watch, available in three luxurious styles is the first Garmin watch to combine a durable and fashionable metal housing with the latest adventure, fitness training, activity tracking and smartwatch technology. With three versions available: titanium with brushed titanium band; steel with brushed stainless steel band; and steel with vintage leather band, there is a fēnix Chronos watch to suit every style and every adventure.

Face-It is a custom watch face app for Connect IQ devices from Garmin. Connect IQ compatible wearable users can customise their watch face with any photo from their mobile device. Users download the free app from either the App Store or Google Play, then select an image from their photo library, choose their clock style and send it wirelessly to their device for a completely customised watch face. Put your pet or your partner in a watch!

The Garmin Forerunner 235 adds built-in Elevate wrist-based heart rate to an easy-to-use GPS running watch. This GPS-enabled running watch allows runners to monitor their heart rate 24/7 without a chest strap. It tracks essential data like distance, pace and personal records, and thanks to its built-in GPS, runners can track how far, how fast and where they’re running all without worrying about carrying a phone too. It doubles as an all-day activity tracker as it counts steps, calories and intensity minutes, so users can still record progress and activities even when they’re not running.


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