This is not the future that we had predicted. There are no flying cars or tele-porters, but we have developed ways to make our lives more convenient. Wearable technology is constantly improving, and each new iteration includes boundless potential to make our lives more productive and healthy.
This past week saw the launch of the latest version of Apple’s signature wearable, the Apple Watch Series 6. The Apple Watch Series 6 features a larger screen than previous models, dramatic improvements in user interface and a new blood oxygen sensor, making the Series 6 the first consumer device capable of taking a standing blood-oxygen reading.
To prove that smartwatches aren’t just for professional athletes or business executives, here are a few ways you can use one in your veterinary clinic to become more efficient today.
One of the best reasons to use a smartwatch is that it frees you up from being tethered to your phone. You can still see all of your incoming notifications at a glance but you’re far less likely to want to use your phone. It’s admittedly a simple thing, but merely raising your wrist versus having to dig for your phone can save you a lot of time – and your chance of being distracted is dramatically less.
One of the primary excuses people use to justify having their phones on them is to use them for their intended purpose – as telephones. Given that smartwatches offer freedom from being tethered to your phone, it would be unusual if you couldn’t receive phone calls right on your wrist. Since all you need is a free finger to tap the screen, the days of having to quickly scramble for your phone before the call goes to voicemail are over.
Certain models take this functionality a step further, offering cellular versions that allow you to make and receive calls without needing to be tethered to a nearby phone at all. What’s more, smartwatches equipped with the latest Apple Watch software, watchOS 6, includes Walkie-Talkie functionality, which allows you to have a two-way conversation over wi-fi with anyone else with a watch that supports that software.
While we’re on our feet and active while seeing patients, a substantial amount of clinic time is dedicated to sitting at a desk filling out reports or ordering supplies or a myriad of other clerical tasks – and recent research has come to find that excessive sitting is actually really bad for your health.
Many smartwatches also function as activity trackers, subtly encouraging you to stay active throughout the day with step counters and calorie counts. In addition to tracking the calories you’ve burned and how many minutes you’ve exercised, the Apple Watch also tracks the number of hours in which you’ve stood and moved around for at least one minute every day. Standing up from your desk and taking a brief break to walk around will not only keep you healthy, but it also allows you to get back to work with renewed focus.
Smartwatches continue to be somewhat of a niche product, with only a few major manufacturers such as Apple and Samsung creating devices for the category, but the enhanced level of convenience they bring to your life – creating the opportunity to put away the phone and be more mindful of the moment – cannot be understated. If your curiosity is piqued but you aren’t fully ready to commit, you can sign up for a demo at any Apple Store to better learn what smartwatches are capable of.
What do you think about smartwatches? Have they made your life and your clinic duties easier, or do you think they’re too specific to really catch on? Let us know what you think on social media!