You have no doubt heard the buzz about smart watches and how they’re about to become the Next Big Thing. What do you think about the idea of wearing technology on your wrist? Let’s check out the ins and outs of smart watches so that you can decide whether looking at (and possibly talking to) your wrist may be the right choice for you.

What is a Smart Watch?

A smart watch is simply a timepiece with a screen, but it can do much more than merely let you know what time it is. Imaging having a tiny smartphone on your wrist and you’ll get the picture.

How does a Smart Watch Work?

Basically, a smart watch is only a watch until you hook it up to a smart phone. Using Bluetooth technology, you can decide what types of notifications you want to have sent to your wrist, such as:
  • E-mail
  • Social networks
  • Messages
  • Calls

While your smart phone can do a lot more than these basic functions, several apps work with smart watches to perform different functions. If you’re interested in buying a smart watch, you’ll want to find out what kind of apps are available with the smart phone you’re considering before you buy.

Compatibility with your Smartphone

Another factor you’ll want to consider before buying a smart watch is whether it will be compatible with your existing smartphone. Unless you’re interested in buying a new phone, you need to know that smart watches are developed to work with either iOS or Android platforms. Some of them will only be compatible with specific smartphones, too, and not just one operating system. Your best bet is to take your phone to the retailer with you when you’re ready to buy a smart watch to make sure the model you’re looking at is compatible.

Example of An App for Smart Watches: Apple’s Health App

Apple’s Health app features an easy-to-read dashboard that will show you at a glance exactly how many calories you’ve burned, your heart rate, blood sugar and cholesterol levels. All the data is in one handy place any time you want to access it.

The app also allows you to create an emergency card with other important health information, such as your blood type and whether you’re allergic to any medications and the type of reaction exposure prompts from you. This information is readily available to emergency personnel from your lock screen. You always have complete control over exactly what you choose to share with the health and fitness app.

The app also tracks other important health data, such as nutrition, body measurements, test results, how much sleep you’re getting, your vital signs and details about your reproductive health. You can list any chronic medical conditions, medications and dosages you’re currently taking, along with your emergency contact information

HealthKit was designed to be a shareable app. You can choose to share your blood pressure results automatically with your doctor in order to keep your medical team up to date about changes in your condition. Another option you may want to consider is to syncing the nutrition app with the fitness apps regarding how many calories you’re eating each day. This step will allow your health and fitness apps to work together more effectively for your benefit.

Apple’s Health app gives you the convenience of having all of your health information in one place. Everything stays under your control. All of the information you generate about yourself if yours. You get to decide whether you want to keep it confidential or if and when you’re willing to share it with anyone else.

Lock your phone with a passcode or with a Touch ID and everything in your health and fitness data in the app is encrypted so that no one else can access it.

Once you download Health, you can access data about your heart rate, calories burned, etc. quickly and easily by simply looking at your watch. This app also makes it easy to track your weight loss goals discretely.

Go Small Screen for Privacy and Convenience for Health Data

When you want to store and share data with only a select few people, your best bet is to keep your screen small. Even with a hand-held device, you run the risk of having your personal data being compromised by someone looking over your shoulder or picking up an unlocked phone and accessing your personal data. To keep your private matters private, consider a smart watch and keeping your data close.