Will smartclothes replace smartwatches?

The popularity of fitness-tracking wristbands will wane in the next 12 months, according to market analysts, as consumers opt instead for more versatile smartwatches and new smartclothing. Currently the domain of professional athletes, smartclothing will overtake the sale of fitness trackers by the end of 2016 as consumer products become available.
The Polo Tech smartshirt by Ralph Lauren, which was shown off at the US Open in August, can measure heart rate and respiration connecting to a smartphone via Bluetooth. Just one example of technology integrated into clothing, the shirt could displace traditional chest straps and other wearable fitness gadgets for fitness enthusiasts and athletes. Because smartshirts and other smartgarments can hold more sensors closer to the skin, they can collect more information and produce better data, like the full wave of the heart beat rather than just the pulse. First-generation smartshirts have been available from companies like Adidas and Underarmour for a while now marketing them to professional athletes, but we’re starting to see interest from regular manufacturers of garments for a much larger audience.


In 2015, 10 million smart garments will be shipped, but by 2016 it is predicted that shipments will increase to an estimated 26 million – 7 million more than smart wristbands that same year. A forecast 68.1 million total wearable fitness devices, including smart wristbands and garments, sports watches, chest straps and other fitness monitors, will be shipped in 2015. Smartwatches that have fitness-tracking functions, such as Motorola’s
Moto 360 and the upcoming Apple Watch, will cannibalize sales of fitness tracking bands including the Jawbone up in 2015, leading to a decline in the number of wristband fitness gadgets shipped. Consumers will have more choices next year between wristbands and
smartwatches that have similar functionality. Half of people considering buying a wristband opt for a smartwatch instead.


The increase in smartwatch sales is powered partly by Apple’s Watch, due for release in spring 2015 and Android Wear, but also driven by traditional watch manufacturers launching connected watches or smartwatches such as Casio and Fossil. We could think of smartwatches as the evolution of the digital watch, there are 1.2 billion watches sold globally. A certain percentage of those digital watches will become connected watches in the next year or so. Whether users will stick with their new smart wearables is unclear, with half of Americans who own a fitness tracker no longer using it and one-third found to ditch wearables within six months. People wear fitness trackers for various reasons and a good number of them may learn what they want to know after six months of using them. But there’s so much innovation happening at the moment with these wearable electronics it’s quite possible if one device doesn’t work for them they’re at a price point where someone could feel free to try something different or in a totally different category. The one feature that is likely to be the most interesting for new and existing users of fitness gadgets is heart rate monitoring, which is making its way down into a new wave of more affordable gadgets in 2015.

Adapted from theguardian.com


Exercise 1

Find the words or expressions in the text which mean the following:

1) to become weaker: __________
2) capable of doing several things: __________
3) through: __________
4) a piece of clothing: __________
5) to sell sth to sb: __________
6) to send / to transport: __________
7) to be given strength by sth: __________
8) to start selling sth: __________
9) to stop using sth: ___________
10)a piece of equipment: __________
11)a function: __________
12)within sb’s price range: __________


Exercise 2

Match the expressions from the two columns into logical collocations:

1) to opt                                       a) for release
2) a fitness                                  b) products
3) wearable                                 c) the sales of sth
4) to cannibalize                        d) analyst
5) to be due                                 e) for sth
6) a price                                      f)  to sth
7) a market                                  g) technology
8) consumer                               h) tracker
9) to stick                                     i) down into sth
10)sth makes its way                 j) point


Exercise 3

Provide English equivalents of these expressions:

1) domena kogoś
2) zwiększyć sprzedaż względem czegoś
3) wyprzeć (np. przestarzały produkt)
4) producenci
5) prognozować
6) mający wejść na rynek
7) spadek czegoś
8) funkcjonalność
9) napędzany czymś
10)pozostać przy czymś
11)w ciągu, w ramach
12)obecni użytkownicy



Grammar corner…

In the text you came across several multi-word phrases, e.g. first-generation products, fitness-tracking functions, etc. Usually they function as adjectives, regardless of how many words they are made of. Please remember that usually if something stands before a noun
in English, it functions as an adjective and it doesn’t really matter that much what part of speech it really is. If you put two nouns together, the first one will automatically become an adjective, e.g. a pencil (adj.) case (n.) (both pencil and case are in fact nouns) is a case for pencils. You can also combine other words into compound adjectives, e.g. multi-, self-, – free, -less, newly-.


Exercise 4

Rewrite the sentences below using compound adjectives.

1) a device which can be used for many purposes is a …
2) an action that you take to defend yourself is …
3) a machine that is easy to use and doesn’t cause any problems for the user is a …
4) a man who made his own career without any help is a …
5) a cosmetic that doesn’t damage the environment is …
6) something you don’t have to pay any duty or tax for is …
7) an internet service that doesn’t require any cables is a …
8) a device you don’t have to operate using your hands is a …
9) a glass of juice that has been squeezed from a fresh orange is a …
10)a couple who have just had their wedding is a …



heart rate – puls
respiration – oddychanie
a garment – ubiór
a price range – zakres cenowy
to wane – osłabnąć
versatile – wszechstronny
via – poprzez
to ship sth – transportować coś
to launch sth – wprowadzić coś na rynek
to ditch sth – odstawić coś w kąt
a wristband – opaska na nadgarstek
a feature – funkcja
affordable – w przystępnej cenie
to opt for sth – wybrać coś, optować za czymś
wearable technology – galanteria elektroniczna
to cannibalize the sales of sth – odebrać czemuś udział w rynku
to be due for release – mieć wyznaczony termin wejścia na rynek
a price point – pułap cenowy
a market analyst – analityk rynku
consumer products – produkty przeznaczone dla szerokiej grupy klientów
to stick with sth – pozostać przy czymś
sth makes its way down into sth – coś wkracza do czegoś
to displace sth – wyprzeć coś
manufacturers – producenci
upcoming – mający wejść na rynek
existing users – obecni użytkownicy
within – w obrębie, w ramach, w ciągu


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Ex. 1
1) to wane
2) versatile
3) via
4) a garment
5) to market sth to sb
6) to ship sth
7) to be powered by sth
8) to launch sth
9) to ditch sth
10)a device
11)a feature

Ex. 2
1) to opt for sth
2) a fitness tracker
3) wearable technology
4) to cannibalize the sales of sth
5) to be due for release
6) a price point
7) a market analyst
8) consumer products
9) to stick with sth
10)sth makes its way into sth

Ex. 3
1) a domain of sb
2) to overtake the sale of sth
3) to displace sth
4) manufacturers
5) to predict
6) upcoming
7) a decline in sth
8) a functionality
9) driven by
10)to stick with sth
12)existing users

Ex. 4
1) a multi-purpose device
2) self-defence
3) a user-friendly machine
4) a self-made man
5) environmentally-friendly
6) duty-free
7) wire-less service
8) a hands-free device
9) a freshly-squeezed juice
10)a newly-wed couple