Sara Urasini and Brian Stephens, product and experience designers at Design Partners, talk to Zurich about wearable technology and why the future is closer than we think.
Wearables are essentially fashion with integrated technology, and it’s going to be a big deal in the future, according to Sara Urasini from Design Partners. “It started out as small wearable technology, such as earplugs or watches, but in the future technology will get smaller and will be integrated into our clothes and our daily lives,” she says.
Brian Stephens is founder and CEO of Design Partners. He says: “Design is very much about practical things we can do soon, and we are very much about actionable, applicable design that’s real and which can impact on peoples’ lives.”
There is lots of talk about the future and what it will look like, but we don’t often hear what the future is going to feel like. According to Urasini , this is where things get very exciting. “The future will get completely into sensory engagement and will see us using our senses much more for visual, voice and touch engagement.”
When we think about the future we often think about robots and artificial intelligence but Urasini says technology is becoming much more personal and integrated into our everyday lives. She believes that while robots will feature in our daily lives, in the future, technology will be constructed around the human body.
"Design is very much about practical things we can do soon, and we are very much about actionable, applicable design that's real and which can impact on peoples' lives."
Brian Stephens - CEO Design Partners
Initially starting out in fashion, Urasini moved into industrial design because she says she was inspired to make products for the future. “Fashion at the moment looks just towards seasons and it continues to repeat the seasons rather than looking at what the future vision is. And technology can really bring that into the fashion world,” she enthuses.
Predicting the products of the future is like venturing into the unknown and there is a lot more research and development to be done before the technology is fully integrated into our lives.”The tools that we are designing today are going to make a big difference to what people can do in the future,” Stephens says.
Urasini agrees that it’s not easy to look 20 years into the future but through research, experimentation, forecasting and tracking trends and behavior, we can go some way to predicting products of the future.