Do Wearables Fit In Your Enterprise?

Do wearables fit in your enterprise, and if so, how?

That’s the question many organizations are asking themselves as application developers and designers begin to better understand the complexities of building programs for a growing mobile world.

In a recent survey conducted by Kony, Inc., nearly two-thirds of developers said application design is a challenge for wearable devices, and the reason is because of a lack of communication between IT stakeholders, designers and developers.

And because of that, enterprises are hesitant to buy in to the concept, slowing a digital transformation process which analysts believe will be commonplace by 2020, according to the survey.

“I think the biggest challenge for enterprises to adopt a wearable culture is getting that first taste,” said Ryan Martin, Senior Analyst with ABI Research. “And in doing so, the product needs to be ready. Solutions can’t be provided to enterprises in a half-baked way; the ‘first taste’ should be backed up by a product that’s ready to go. There needs to be an attractive time-to-value for an enterprise to consider making this change.”

In the present, creating streamlined apps for mobile devices and wearables, or omni-channel development, is too complex (37% of respondents) and developers don’t have the time or resources to create the product (37% of respondents).

There’s still a lot of information needed by the enterprise to move into a wearable world, Martin believes.

“For instance, a (smart) watch needs to be glanceable. It’s incredibly important for an app interaction on the watch to last between four and six seconds, but it’s still less efficient than, say, a smartphone or tablet, because it requires two hands to operate,” Martin said. “This is actually compromising the capacity to communicate.”

The majority of designers – 51-percent – said their top challenge is designing mobile apps for multiple devices and platforms. But that doesn't mean there isn't a place for wearables in the enterprise. 

If designers and developers are hampered by the complexities of omni-channel app development, they’re already behind the boat and need to catch up. According to a report published earlier this year by Tractica, enterprise adoption of wearable technology is growing quickly thanks to solid ROI and improved operational efficiencies.  The report also cites leaders in industries such as automotive, healthcare, and food services as having experienced successful deployments of wearable technologies.

So, do wearables fit in the enterprise? If so, where, and for whom? Let us know in the comments section below.