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Africa’s Ripe Digital Revolution: The Rise Of Wearables

The African market is gearing up for another digital revolution, one that of wearables.

Wearables is that technology that has been fully introduced but has not been fully explored yet. Marketers have barely scratched the surface of the goldmine that is wearables. It offers immense opportunity for customization, something that draws in customers like nothing else. Wearables also promote creative innovation.

This potential has been spotted by many people. The world’s first wearables festival was recently held in Berlin. It was called Wear It Festival. It included not only wearable technology, but wearable art too. Wearables have permeated the market as people know the names of prominent brands like Fitbit and Jawbone. But the initial hype that surrounded wearables has worn down a little among the general public, perhaps because the novelty has worn off. But the future of wearables promises to be extremely exciting.

Many products have been introduced that deviate from the public’s general understanding of the term wearables. Based on the same kind of technology that Google Glass offers, a motorcycle helmet called Skully AR1 was introduced. This adds safety features to the traditional helmet. This wearables as a term should no longer conjure into mind images of just bands that measure fitness or calories, but any item that you can wear on your person, whether as a clothing or as an accessory. The Apple Watch is packed with features that include everything from heart monitoring functions to advanced communication.

One area where wearable technology has, and can still make a huge change, is customer experience. As has been said innumerable times, in today’s time and age, enhancing the customer experience is the end goal of every aspect of marketing. Maximum resources of a company are spent in improving the customer service experience.

Though Amazon’s one-click has been embroiled in patent disputes, yet no one can deny that it is an excellent strategy because the aim is to provide the customer the path of least resistance. In the online world, every second – actually, every millisecond – counts, and every small delay can lose you a customer. Giving them a pathway to do what they have to do in a shorter, faster, more efficient way is definitely a win. But the question that we must ask is – does this rule apply to the offline world as well? The answer should unequivocally be yes.

Think about any such offline industry – whether it is banking, hospitality or retail. To become a customer, you must give what seems like endless data – your name, phone number, credit card number, ID or driver’s license, usernames, passwords, billing and shipping addresses, loyalty account, age, gender, dress and shoe sizes — and not to mention any other personal preferences you bias toward, like specific product categories, styles, colors, quantities, or brands.

Not only does this cause the customer to feel that he is wasting his time, it also doesn’t create a favorable frame of mind for the customer. Apart from this you have to find someone to help you if you have a query, you have to physically check out the goods or services you are looking for and pick one – the process just becomes longer. Perhaps the most exciting thing about wearables is that they can change this.

Yes, smart phones have helped a bit in this regard, but their use for this purpose is not very widespread, and you still have to type, swipe etc. But with a wearable, you wouldn’t even have to raise a finger. Raise your wrist, and you will be as uniquely recognized as you are when you log onto your account on your favorite shopping website. Your real life will be like Amazon one-click.

And that’s what African developers seem to realize as they are focusing more on bringing around a digital revolution in the tech industry.

 

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