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Samsung and Fitbit currently leading wearables markets

Samsung and Fitbit currently leading wearables markets | Healthcare and Technology news |

With the Apple Watch launch, and its potential to upend the wearables market, a few months away, Canalys reports that the current market leader for “smart wearable bands” — any wristworn device that can run third-party applications — is Samsung. Meanwhile, the “basic wearable band” market, which Canalys defines as wearables that can’t run apps, is still led by Fitbit.

The up-and-comer in the non-smartwatch wearable market is Xiaomi, whose focus on the Chinese market and low price point have catapulted it into the spotlight. It has shipped more than a million Mi Bands, 103,000 of those on the first day. 

“Though the Mi Band is a lower-margin product than competing devices, Xiaomi entered the wearables market with a unique strategy, and its shipment volumes show how quickly a company can become a major force in a segment based solely on the size of the Chinese market,” analyst Jason Low said in a statement.

Canalys didn’t share the total shipment numbers for basic bands, but said 4.6 million smart bands shipped in 2014, only 720,000 of which were Android Wear. Of those, Motorola led the market with its Moto 360.  Samsung led the smart band segment overall, owing to the wide range of devices the company has available.

“‘Samsung has launched six devices in just 14 months, on different platforms and still leads the smart band market,” VP and principal analyst Chris Jones said in a statement. “But it has struggled to keep consumers engaged and must work hard to attract developers while it focuses on [operating system] Tizen for its wearables.”

Canalys predicts Apple’s entry into the market will blow up the category, and says the device’s battery life will be the main advantage over Android Wear to begin with.

“Apple made the right decisions with its WatchKit software development kit to maximize battery life for the platform, and the Apple Watch will offer leading energy efficiency,” analyst Daniel Matte said in a statement. “Android Wear will need to improve significantly in the future, and we believe it will do so.”

Cheryl Palmer's curator insight, 20 February 2015, 00:06

WEARABLES - Market report summary on the current (Feb 2015) state of the wearables market with link to data source.  Useful to get insight into where major players are focusing their development dollars.!

Fit Nation: Sweet dreams for better health, weight loss

Fit Nation: Sweet dreams for better health, weight loss | Healthcare and Technology news |

"You can sleep when you're dead," I've told myself while answering work email in the middle of the night.

To combat the previous night's loss of sleep, I'd go to bed at 8 p.m. the next night, only to find myself wide awake at 1 a.m.

The ping-pong of sleeplessness leaves me disoriented and cranky.

I wore my crazy work hours like a badge.

"I worked 60 hours last week," I'd say tiredly, but with a secret glee that this must mean that I was the best at what I was doing.

My disregard for a healthy work/life balance showed my dedication and loyalty to work.

This imbalance fed others in my life: How could I possibly go to the gym? I have work to do. I don't know how to fall asleep naturally. I'll have a drink or two before bed to "help" me fall asleep. Since I didn't shop for groceries on Sunday because I slept all day, on Tuesday, I had to order takeout.

A year and a half ago, I returned from my second long-term assignment in India and felt pretty burnt out.

With the help of my boss, I found a new role within my company. This was a role that allowed me to develop a healthy balance between doing good work and living a good life.

So I started leaving work at 5 p.m. I worked from home on some days. I filled my free time with dozens of new hobbies.

But I still wasn't getting regular and consistent sleep.

I'd seen the news reports that said insomnia can hinder weight loss. But I still held on to those late nights, which were now filled with knitting and "Law & Order" reruns instead of work.

"How could I do it all if one-third of my day was spent sleeping?" I wondered.

Fast forward to our Fit Nation kickoff weekend.

Paul Kriegler, corporate dietitian for Lifetime Fitness, led a nutrition workshop for our Fit Nation team.

When the discussion of sleep came up, I listened even more intently as he explained the havoc that sleeplessness can wreak on our bodies, our blood sugars and our metabolism.

I left that weekend determined to tackle my insomnia head on.

I decided on three simple behaviors that I could change immediately:

1. Do not drink alcohol at home

I used this as a crutch to get to sleep for many years. But while that drink might knock you out, you're not getting restful REM sleep and a few short hours later, you're right back where you started: awake!

2. Set a consistent bedtime

I decided to go to bed at 10:30 every night, including the weekends. The first few days were weird, but by the third night, my body was used to winding itself down around 9 p.m.

3. No screens an hour before bedtime and no cell phone in the bedroom

I spend most of my days planted in front of a computer. If I'm not working, I'm surfing the Internet or watching a movie online.

My eyes and brain are constantly stimulated.

Unplugging an hour before bed allows me to have a conversation with my boyfriend without distractions. I read a few chapters in a good book or I knit a few more rows on my latest sock project.

It's been nice having this time for reflection and to quiet my mind right before bed.

Banishing the phone from the bedroom means if I roll over in the middle of the night, I simply wait for myself to fall back asleep instead of reaching for the phone and scrolling through Instagram.

I'm at the end of the third week and I have to tell you, I'm now sleeping through the night!

I feel energized and excited to start the day.

I've got energy for workouts and cooking.

I feel great. And I look forward to bedtime each night.

Sweet dreams at last.

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