Proposed Texting-While-Walking Laws Spark Wearable Tech Innovation
Some states are considering laws banning texting while walking. You could find your future self hit with a nasty fine, if you’re caught tweeting while strolling down the sidewalk. But tech companies are introducing innovative new ways to keep you connected and out of the eye of law enforcement.
Hands-Free Wearables Create Loophole to State Texting-While-Walking Bans
The society we live in has integrated a common marketing scheme that seemingly never fails. Inevitably, there is always a product to be produced when a consumer is in need. In 2010, Apple released the first “tablet computer” which would eventually produce a mass demand for the iPad. Before this, everyone either had a cell phone or a laptop, and if they were tech savvy, both.
Most recently, the iPad Mini 4 was released in 2015 as another improvement in response to mass demand from previous consumers. Technology always makes a way to fix a problem that arises in our culture.
New Jersey lawmakers are proposing a statewide ban which would outlaw individuals from texting while walking on state roads. Locals are protesting against this measure, shocked that government officials would take serious action against such a minor issue. However, the law itself isn’t as irrational as the consequences of breaking it. If caught by law enforcement, an individual could face up to a $50 fine at first, and persistent offenders could receive 15 days in jail.
The Apple Watch Jumpstarts Innovation
As with any law, there are loopholes to manipulate it, and various tech companies are marketing their products to do just that. The Apple Watch stands out amongst other wearables in the market as the only product to provide the same essential features a smart phone does. The watch features Siri, Apple’s voice controlled “intelligence-assistant,” which a person can speak directly to, distraction free.
MYLE Will “Make Your Life Easier”
A similar, and more recent product, known as MYLE allows the person wearing it to record calendar dates, send out text messages, write notes and access other features, all hands-free. According to a Digital Trends article, MYLE stands for Make Your Life Easier and is pinned onto a shirt, making it simple to tap the gadget and immediately begin speaking to it without ever having to look at a screen.
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Onyx is a Stylish, Compact Walkie-Talkie Like Alternative
Onyx, another notable product, was recently debuted by Orion Labs at this SXSW. This wearable startup has gained a following due to its convenient size and sleek features. Only a few inches in size, this product discretely attaches onto an individual’s coat or sleeve and features the ability to simply tap it and immediately send a text or make a phone call through voice control.
According to Jesse Robbins, CEO of Orion Labs, Apple has “raised the bar for everyone” in reference to the success of the Apple Watch. He commented on how fashion is becoming a crucial aspect in the design and marketing of wearables. Onyx’s metallic display and easy accessibility attracts consumers, especially those proactively seeking a way to maneuver around possible bans such as the one New Jersey is considering.
Technology always finds a solution to societal issues, aiding people in avoiding the inconvenience of laws they deem illogical. Being arrested for absentmindedly sending messages on your phone can be an intimidating concept to many, creating the perfect market for tech companies specializing in wearables. Society can remain assured that technology will find a way to adequately meet their needs, regardless of what laws or boundaries are in the way.
Is your city facing the possibility of a similar ban? How do you feel about it? What alternatives do you foresee as potential workarounds? Let us know with your comments below.