83% think wearable technology has the potential to transform personal and public health
A seamless and integrated digital experience is essential for consumers to maximise the potential of smart wearable health and wellbeing devices, according to new research conducted by Cisco across the EMEA region.
The research was carried out by Cisco AppDynamics and questioned 4,000 people across in the UAE, UK, France and Germany. It discovered that 83 percent of those polled believe smart wearable technology has the potential to positively transform the health of individuals and improve public health services in general.
Wearables are increasingly popular: 38 percent of people currently use at least one wearable technology device, while 71 percent plan to increase their use of such products and related applications over the next 12 months. Thus, wearable technology has reached a defining moment in its evolution, moving from the early adopter stage through to mass adoption.
The pace of innovation in wearable healthcare products is high, and users have clear preferences for what they want their devices to do. 84 percent expect their devices to indicate early warning signs of illness and the same percentage want to improve fitness goals. In addition, 78 percent look to wearables to help manage chronic health conditions; 79 percent to identify the spread of infectious diseases; and 77 percent to support healthy eating.
83 percent of consumers believe that having reliable, real-time access to health data and accuracy of this data is critical to a good user experience.
In fact, the quality of the experience is so important that 76 percent of those questioned said they would stop using a specific wearable device or application if they had a bad digital experience. Perhaps more worryingly for smart wearable manufacturers and app developers is that 59 percent of respondents said a bad digital experience with one wearable device or application would put them off trying other health or wellbeing wearable technology.
The biggest causes of bad digital experiences are device crashes (54 percent), slow or unresponsive performance (51 percent) and data privacy concerns (51 percent). For 84 percent of people, trust is a critical factor when choosing a wearable medical device or application brand.
Despite these reservations the overall outlook for such products and services is positive with 79 percent of consumers feeling excited about the potential benefits that wearable technology could bring.
The findings of the Cisco AppDynamics research are clear. Wearable technology brands must be able to deliver a seamless and reliable digital experience to consumers at all times. Failure to do so will see many users switch to rival products or abandon the wearable healthcare market altogether.
To avoid this, manufacturers and app developers should adopt the latest tools to manage and optimize performance and availability across a complex IT environment. This means ensuring their technologists have access to a single, unified view of IT performance, right across the IT estate — what’s called full-stack observability. Furthermore, these wearable technologies must be able to connect to this IT performance data with real-time business metrics, to quickly identify issues that may harm the end-user digital experience.