New generation of wearables not just for wrists

Why stop at smartwatches?

For the past several years, watches capable of capturing users’ steps, heartbeats and sleep patterns have been gathering popularity.

At the recent Consumer Electronics Show 2020, a number of wearable devices that sit on body parts other than wrists were on display. Some clever, some practical, and some silly, according to a compilation from Mashable.

Smart pajamas are designed for the elderly and people with dementia. Sensors embedded in pockets and elsewhere monitor vital signs, a patient’s sleep patterns and are able to trigger an emergency call if needed.

While most people are able to use the “which hole in the belt” method, or a bathroom scale, a smart belt can monitor your waistline, and tell you that you’re putting on weight, as if you didn’t know. The belt can also track your gait, and alert you if the way you’re walking puts you at risk for falling.

A smart hat or hair band, uses lasers to stimulate hair growth. As they say, “results may vary.”

For a new mother, a smart breast pump allows a woman to wear the device under her clothes and underwear, to pump milk while at work or in public. And, there’s no need to wait in line for a pumping room.

Insoles in a pair of running shoes can detect whether you’re landing too much on the front or back of the foot, and offer tips to improve your stride.

Not only adults can use wearables — a new baby monitor can Velcro onto an infant’s diaper. In addition to signaling when a change is needed, the device can also keep track of room temperature and chart how well the baby is sleeping.

Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a general assignment reporter with WTOP since 1997. He says he looks forward to coming to work every day, even though that means waking up at 3:30 a.m.

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