Back in April, news broke about a Fitbit that may have saved a man’s life. Doctors were able to take a look at the patient’s Fitbit, which monitored his heart rate, to determine when his irregular heartbeat began. It played an important role in their diagnosis — but 20 years ago, the thought of doctors being able to trust a consumer heart rate monitor’s accuracy would have been questionable at best.
Since its humble beginnings, wearable technology has evolved dramatically. In 1975, the Pulsar calculator watch was only capable of doing what its name implied: telling time, and performing simple calculations. Today, wearables like the Fitbit Charge HR can track your heart rate throughout the day. Devices like the Lumo Lift can help you correct your posture. And wearables like Quell, a wearable pain management device, can provide relief to chronic pain sufferers.
Of course, the evolution of wearable tech is far from complete. In the next 30 years, the devices we use today will look primitive in comparison to the tech of the future. For a full perspective on how far we’ve come, check out the infographic below, created by WearableZone.