The Future of Wearables: Silona Bonewald on Biohacking and Data Ownership

biohacking and data ownership for wearables

Episode 5 this week features Open Bio advocate Silona Bonewald, a long-time proponent of open source and open government. She’s currently exploring wearable products that can help improve our interactions with each other. During the interview, Bonewald shares her thoughts on three critical aspects of wearable tech: data, privacy, and security. These are particularly relevant topics for the rapidly changing digital health industry.

LISTEN TO EPISODE 5

With medical and fitness wearables able to collect far more data about people than ever before, biohacking is a hot topic. The user benefits include increased awareness and opportunities to modify behaviors. But who should see that data? Who ultimately owns the info being collected? How can it be protected? What level of privacy should we expect to maintain when we strap on a wearable device? During the podcast, listen to Silona Bonewald’s passionate view on what needs to happen with our body’s big data.

THE SOURCEBITS TAKE: A CLIENT’S WEARABLE OPPORTUNITY

We’re always thinking about what comes next for the mobile apps we’ve worked on for our clients – mobile apps need regular care and updates, just like websites and other brand properties.

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Three years ago Sourcebits created Coca Cola’s Powerade Hydration Coach – a health and fitness mobile app for Samsung and Powerade VIP guests at the London Olympics. The two global brands gave out the Samsung Galaxy SIII preloaded with the Powerade Hydration Coach app. The app estimated a user’s fluid intake requirements based on their height and weight, calculated against the type of sport he/she performed, duration and local weather conditions. All the activity data was manually entered to provide an estimation on how much Powerade should be consumed to rehydrate the user.

A lot has changed since the 2012 Olympics. Google Glass and the Pebble Watch launched in 2013. Samsung came out with its Gear S Smartwatch in November 2014. The Apple Watch launched in April 2015.

Imagine how Coca Cola could modify the Powerade Hydration Coach for the world of wearables today. The Apple Watch – complete with the Health Kit – would passively collect data and take advantage of smartwatch sensors like the heart rate monitor, accelerometer and gyroscope to automatically calculate activities. By requiring less user input, and also obtaining more accurate information from the sensors, the Powerade Hydration Coach could become a habitual app for people to check after they exercise. Imagine a message appearing on the watch that says: “Great 3 mile run! Remember to Rehydrate. You need 18 oz of Powerade.”

Sourcebits could make that happen.

LET’S TALK WEARABLE APPS

We love working with clients that seek our mobile design and app development services – and they’ve asked us to create awesome apps for the wearable tech market. A great example of a recent project: Vuzix and their enterprise smart glasses.

If you’re thinking about entering the wearable tech market or have an existing app that you’d like to reimagine for the Apple Watch, smart glasses or other devices – you’ve come to the right place.

TALK TO US

Sourcebits is sponsoring The Future of Wearables podcast – sign up to get a weekly email with the latest episode. Each week, host Heather Schlegel interviews mobile industry thought leaders and wearable makers.

Piotr Gajos, Chief Innovation Officer

Piotr is Sourcebits Chief Innovation Officer. A 2006 Apple Design Award winner, Piotr draws much of his inspiration from film and music, and focuses on leading our Innovation Strategy Workshops, generating new ideas for Sourcebits, and consulting on projects.