5 Key Considerations When Selecting an Industrial Wearable Device Solution

Wearables and remote connect technologies are finding use in diverse settings across industries including manufacturing. Combined with the power of IoT, connected workers are believed to disrupt traditional business models, and improve safety of frontline workers while enhancing quality and effThe COVID-19 pandemic-induced travel restrictions and social distancing measures have spurred the growth of wearable technology in the industrial sector. Today, Internet of Wearable Things (IoWT) is a new yet promising segment, with the eyewear and headwear product segments expected to expand at a CAGR of 16.9% from 2020 to 2027.1 

With a broader integration of Internet of Things, wearables can enable the modern workforce to gain real-time insights, make effective decisions and maintain occupational safety. To maximize business value and ROI, it is necessary to identify the right gaps and plug them with fitting solutions.  

However, while wearables are known to improve workplace productivity, safety and efficiency, how do you know what your perfect business match is? 

Here are five crucial factors you need to consider while selecting the right wearable device for the job: 

Workplace Safety 

Industrial workers often perform their tasks in the toughest conditions where they may need to hold the railings or ladder rungs at dizzying heights, while fixing equipment, inspecting a product or operating a machine. This requires both hands to be free to efficiently and safely perform the task. 

Mobile devices like rugged tablets with immersive solutions require the worker to use their hands and take multiple pauses to look at the device screen. 

It is also crucial for the wearable device not to obstruct the worker’s line of site during use. Otherwise it will reduce the worker’s peripheral vision and create distractions. This would not only impact productivity but also decrease situational awareness leading to the inability to respond to a life-threatening safety hazard. An “eyes forward, hands-free” approach can empower the modern workers to accomplish their tasks without compromising on safety and productivity.   

Purpose-Built 

Frontline workers are often exposed to exceedingly difficult environments while working in locations like oil rigs, refineries, chemical plants and mills, among others. The wearable device needs to be rugged and sturdy enough to endure extreme dust, water and survive multiple accidental drops on hard surfaces. A noise cancelling ability and enhanced voice recognition will ensure seamless mission-critical communications even in the loudest conditions. 

Wearables are often used for remote collaboration, sharing reliable visual data and gaining access to expertise. Therefore, a long battery life, a solid processor and a high-resolution camera ensures work isn’t disrupted or data isn’t lost by battery or device failure. 

Training Programs  

Wearable technology is more than just extra gear. Workers need to be onboarded with the necessary knowledge to operate the device properly to ensure its ongoing use within the organization. With the right training and resources, workers can successfully incorporate new technology into the workplace. From device overview and safety enhancement to effectively using solutions, a training program and curriculum can help businesses make the most of the wearable device. 

Data Security 

Wearable technology raises concern for businesses around data security, user privacy and compliance. These devices offer a holistic view of mission-critical business data and step-by-step processes, which must line-up with your company’s security protocols. Compliance to regulatory frameworks and top- notch safety authentication features can help avoid data breaches. These devices must also get timely OS updates which comply with enterprise-grade safety standards, as well as regular verification tests. 

Compatibility 

A wearable device can add business value only if it can solve a specific pain point or use case. While the device itself must meet the environment requirements, it’s ultimately the applications and the data they access that drive productivity and efficiency. However, developing an array of applications in-house would require a large investment stopping most proof of concepts in their tracks. On the other hand, a suite of readily available applications, covering use cases such as remote mentor and training workflows, will enable you to quickly deploy and adapt to your team’s evolving needs. Tapping into an established ecosystem of applications built ground up for the chosen device will also ensure a seamless user experience for your first and frontline workers. 

Elevate, Empower and Engage Your Frontline Workforce with RealWear 

RealWear’s head-mounted, voice-controlled assisted reality devices offer hands-free operation for frontline workers across industries to complete their tasks safely and efficiently. Offering unmatched noise cancellation and voice recognition, the device is controlled with simple voice commands, without the need to tap any buttons. The micro display sits just below the line of sight, views like a 7-inch screen, and can be quickly moved out of the way when not needed, ensuring there is no interference in the vision or range of motion. 

With a solid build, the RealWear device is fully operational from -20 to +50 degree Celsius. 

 It is resistant to water, dust and can withstand drops up to 2 meters without functionality or physical damage. The full shift battery with a sealed port ensures complete safety. In addition to an 8-hour battery life, the device comes with an integrated ‘hot swappable’ function that facilitates a battery change during operation, without resetting any applications or rebooting the device. It is 4X less likely to fail then a rugged mobile computer and almost 13X less than a non-rugged mobile device.2 RealWear’s HMT-1Z1 is the only ATEX Zone 1 rated headset making it ideal for hazardous conditions. 

To ensure users unlock the complete potential of the devices, RealWear develops and facilitates training curriculums that increase safety, compliance, business efficiencies, and improve ROI. RealWear devices are equipped with enterprise-class software and security that aligns with existing company security protocols, and they easily integrate with device management solutions. RealWear’s growing partner ecosystem is made up of over 200 software service providers with apps optimized for the device catering to various use cases.   

The RealWear assisted reality solutions enable industrial workers to connect instantly with remote experts using real-time video collaboration. They save costs, reduce operational errors and mitigate equipment downtime by allowing frontline workers to access digital workflow, and easily verify and document tasks  

Discover how assisted reality wearable solutions can unlock endless possibilities for businesses across industries. 

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