After years of wearing early iterations of smart wearable devices (whether for fitness or for data/communication) and perusing the aisles of new and upcoming wearables at this year’s CES, I’ve come to the conclusion the technology still has a way to go before become natural extensions of our lives and universally adopted. The biggest obstacle beyond battery life and unique apps specific to the wearable experience is user accessibility/screen legibility. We’ve all become accustomed to increasingly larger smart device displays, and navigating a small wrist display can feel regressive and unnecessarily challenging. But one developer is hoping to bridge the divide between utility and legibility, ditching tiny screens and proposing we use our own skin as a touchscreen display.
Currently a concept-only, the Cicret Bracelet is envisioned by its French developers as an Android powered, wrist-worn smart device which trades in the usual eye-squint inducing 1.5″-2″ displays for a pico projection solution. An array of “long range sensors” allows users to touch and tap the projected screen across their arms and wrists just like a smartphone, all without the worry of dropping a fragile screen.
The challenge for Circet’s developers will be three-fold: 1. engineering the pico projection system for sufficient brightness and resolution to be usable in environments beyond optimally dark rooms, 2. fitting enough processing and graphical power into a wrist form factor, and 3. offering users a reasonable battery life. Factoring in the state of projection display, processing power vs. chip size, and current battery capacity, the Cicret is an inventive solution which will likely have to wait for cost/performance to catch up with its proposed utility and feature, but one with promise.
What do you think about this concept? Would you use it?