When Intel unveiled little Edison at CES 2014, the tech world was beside themselves with excitement as the slight form factor of the micro-computer presented all new possibilities for those who’d want to change up the shape of tech.
But has the tiny yet powerful Edison fulfilled the big dreams its maker has for it? We take a look at the plans Intel and its partners have for it, and the other possibilities they hint at.
Smarty pants shirt
Okay, we lied. You can’t get away from the health-tracking, but you can escape the passive bit of it. The smart shirt showed off at the Code/Conference tracks your heart rate without the requisite bulky heart rate sensor attached.
Developed with smart textile company AiQ, the shirt is loaded with sensors and will stream the information via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to your devices. The only niggling fact is that you will have to unplug the electronics before you wash it. The smart fabric is expected in summer.
Smart clothing also present new opportunities for coaches to keep a close eye on their athletes’ performance from heart to perspiration rates to improve training, while non-exercisers like us could explore the emotional side of wearable tech and don a sweater with sensors that light up to show our mood, so people know when to stay away. Or how about a hiking jacket that feeds maps and weather data back to you, and contacts emergency services if need be.
An entire wardrobe of smart clothing anyone? We hope it comes with a wireless changing cupboard though.READ MORE: This health-monitoring t-shirt will make the rest of your clothes look simple-minded
Made by Rest Devices, the Mimo Baby is a connected onesie for your little one. The two green stripes you see on the front senses respiratory rates, while the turtle clip keeps an eye on activity level, skin temperature and body position. The data is then fed back to your smart devices or thanks to Edison, a smart mug that reflects the baby’s breathing patterns. You’ll never have to rely on that untrustworthy baby monitor that really doesn’t tell you anything via sight or sound, because this essentially tells you if your youngling is still breathing (very crucial) and also lets you track its sleeping patterns over time.
The Opening Ceremony smart bracelet has been teased for a while now, but we still haven’t much of a clue with regard to its abilities. But one thing’s for sure, it promises to look good, or at least better than what we’re used to in wearable fashion.
As to exactly how good it will look? That still remains to be seen. But seeing as Opening Ceremony recently designed a capsule collection for Spike Jonze’s film Her (image above), we should be in safe hands. At least we're seeing wearable tech from a fashion designer's point of view instead of what a nerd thinks looks good.
Wearable tech that won’t put us to shame as we walk down the streets, or attract too much attention in the fashion of Glassholes. Edison’s will make wearable tech smaller, so perhaps smartwatches that actually fit women’s wrists, or even a smart tie pin that’s actually the appropriate size. How about intelligent gloves for the winter, that warms up or cools down according to the surrounding temperature?