What does a soldier’s combat outfit have in common with a medical device? Or a smartphone with a car dashboard? With all of these technologies, the link is in the technology itself. Manufacturers that provide design guidance for current and future devices know better than anyone else on the planet how to translate technology into products.
Think about it.
Manufacturers that build smart phones also build wearables, medical devices, smart grids, servers and even communication systems for jets and automobiles. So, as wearables find their way into a soldier’s battle gear and into a patient’s garments, the crossover of technology is obvious. And add in supply chain intelligence and materials technology expertise and manufacturers translate materials, logistics, engineering and fabricating into marketable products for the world.
With the Internet of Things connecting more “things” from our cars to our kitchens, the onboard sensors collecting all the information are often very similar. Yes, your smartphone has a tiny camera and accelerometer and so does your hobby drone and maybe even your smart glasses.
As the same technology used for military and medicine intersect for example, the commonalities are obvious for manufacturers. After all, we already have teams that design and improve materials, miniaturization and integration technologies day-in and day-out. Whether building a smart garment for the battlefield or the recovery room, core technologies are the same.
Then there’s the smart watch. How many “things,” including your body, can you communicate with through a device? And what will a smartwatch become in the next couple of years? Will it be more like a wearable woven into your garments, contact lenses or implanted into your body? Whatever the eventual device, it is manufacturers that play a lead role in translating technologies from diverse industries into new products for tomorrow.