min read
June 4, 2015

Thanks to Wearables (and All the Other Smart Devices Out There), Our Big Data Problems Are About to Get Bigger

Big Data Visualization

Thanks in large part to the growing popularity of wearables like the Apple Watch and Google Glass (predicted, in this case), the amount of data we use is going to grow faster than we ever expected, meaning that businesses are being offered yet more opportunities to understand and appeal to their target audience.Thanks to Netflix, YouTube, and Spotify — not to mention the hundreds of times a day we use our phones to send texts or check Instagram — the amount of data we create and save on a daily basis is immense, to say the least. And as more and more people gain access to smart devices, be they phones, pads, watches, or glasses, that amount of big data problems is only going to get bigger.Given the opportunities that access to the Internet and its millions of native capabilities can provide, this is nothing if not good news: Cisco predicts that, by 2019, 69% of the global population will use mobile devices.Both the audience and the tools with which we can interact with it is growing for companies everywhere, and by using the data we pull from wearables, the opportunities for engagement are boundless.

Opportunity for Action

As we’ve already seen, the data that wearables can pull on users is more precise and more dynamic than anything we’ve seen before. Smartwatches are already capable of tracking our heart rate, which could have more varied uses than one might think — imagine, for instance, being able to detect a crisis in a remote area by the increased heart rates of swaths of people in that vicinity.Far from being a frivolous convenience, the closeness of these devices to the users could possibly have life-and-death consequences for the masses.What’s more, a monitoring system like this could represent big opportunities for companies, too. By running information about a person’s age and background against their heart rate, a business could identify the consumers who would most likely be interested in fitness products, or those who would be possible candidates for something like a pacemaker or a Life Alert system.

Storage Solutions

Perhaps the most important component of any business model is the customer experience. If transactions with your company don’t leave a positive impression with your audience because you don’t understand them, it doesn’t matter how flashy your marketing campaign is or how appealing the colors in your logo are.When the device that’s pulling all the data on your customer is strapped to his or her arm, the advantage you gain is more significant than you might assume. Data doesn’t just help you understand what the customer wants, but helps you create the impression that you’re trying to give it to them.And as anyone who’s operating a business should know by now, even the smallest impressions can be massively important.As companies everywhere prepare for the seismic shifts that the Internet of Things, wearables, and various other digital trends promise to set off, there will be an increasing importance placed on the very resource that makes these devices tick.As our use of data continues to grow by leaps and bounds, so should our investment in making that data work harder and smarter for both the consumer and business.

Brian Manning