The Mobile World Congress is showcasing a whole new generation of wearables you have to strap on to your wrist. Junko Yoshida says they are designed for navel gazers, and selfies are for idiots.
In its press release, Sony also summed up the Lifelog app:
You can see how active you were, where you went, what pictures you took and how you have been communicating with your world. Lifelog will also help you set activity goals, monitor your progress and make recommendations to help inform future decisions.
Personally, the Lifelog premise that Sony describes doesn't warm my cockles. But I'm not knocking Sony here. I also think selfies are a playground for idiots.
To elaborate, I like taking pictures (not necessarily of me). I do a lot of sketching when I travel. I take notes (instinctive for a reporter), and I paint watercolors. But I hate keeping journals, and I'm not so worried about keeping moment-by-moment track of what I did today (or how I looked doing it). Though I often think about what I have to do tomorrow (and I sometimes write a to-do list), I'd hate it if anyone (much less an app on my wrist) kept reminding me of my goals and my progress and nagging me if I fell behind.
I'm often amazed at people -- especially young people -- who seem tremendously interested in themselves. As young as they are, and as little as they've lived, they nonetheless appear to be fascinated with their every little thought and deed. Lifelog is a godsend for these tykes.
It seems as though a better target for this app would be my mother, who can't remember what she ate for lunch 20 minutes ago. But then again, I can't imagine an 86-year-old strapping on a SmartBand and going all selfie with a Lifelog camera.
To measure the real-world usefulness of wearable devices, I think we still face a lot of trial and error. I'm skeptical about the killer app that summons everyone to these devices. As for the numerous peripherals that work with smartphones, I say, let a thousand flowers bloom.
The following pages show pictures of wrist-based wearable devices shown at the Mobile World Congress thus far.
Sony launched the SmartBand at the Mobile World Congress. The device is scheduled to become globally available in March.