Hot on the heels of our recently released whitepaper on wearables, came a fascinating announcement by Microsoft during their launch of Windows 10. One of the stand-out features was Microsoft HoloLens (check out the video). Microsoft HoloLens is a wearable device, which promises to offer customers both augmented and virtual reality.
This announcement reflects how dynamic the wearables market is at the moment. And while commentators and observers currently pay significant attention to the devices themselves, the real value will come from the applications and services which accompany them. A crucial element for the success of Microsoft´s HoloLens will therefore be motivating developers to create the accompanying software and applications.
In doing so, they will be helped by looking at some of the existing business applications which are currently available for wearable devices. Firms have already developed highly valuable use cases for wearables which are transforming how we work in a wide variety of industries.
One of the pioneering companies developing business applications for wearable devices is Salesforce.com. Salesforce.com rolled out Salesforce Wear, an app development platform. The platform contains reference apps, demos, open-source code, and other documentation that can be used to develop apps for a range of wearable devices. The platform can then connect the apps to the company’s Salesforce mobile app platform.
Further fascinating examples include:
ShiftExpert from ClickSoftware: The ShiftExpert app works on wearable devices to let employees clock in and out of shifts and add that data to time sheets. Employees can quickly view their shifts, request to trade a shift, and view overtime from a smartwatch. Managers can schedule shift trades, approve vacation and sick time, and track time sheets from the app.
Proximity Insight: The Proximity Insight app connects with instore iBeacons to make the retail experience more efficient and personal. Ideally, Proximity Insight works in conjunction with the store’s website and mobile app in the following scenario: A shopper receives a mobile notification via the store app based on items he’s viewed; the shopper later enters the store, and a salesperson is alerted to her presence via iBeacons on their smartwatch or smartglasses and can also access data from their CRM database.
The consumer enjoys a significantly improved customer experience with a knowledgeable salesperson.
APX Labs Skylight: Through a mix of the Skylight Platform, Salesforce Wear, and smartglass makers, the APX Labs app enables workers such as telecom service technicians or utility workers to view augmented reality overlay information, such as directions or instructions on how to fix equipment in real time, and quickly log a case in the Salesforce Service Cloud database via smartglasses.
Brivo Labs’ NthID: Brivo Labs wants to make ID access cards obsolete with its identity access management application. NthID integrates with the Bionym Nymi identity authentication wristband to give employees and visitors secure and easy access to office buildings, eliminating the need for ID cards
or key fobs. The Nymi uses a person’s cardiac rhythm to verify identity, which is about as unique as it gets.