Well, in different circles, "appliance" means different things. I tend to use it as a term to mean that something can stand on its own, it doesn't need another device to function. Others draw the distinction in the hardware somehow.
Susan asked: Remember the term Internet appliance design from 10 years ago or more?
When it comes to computers, I understand the term appliance to mean "a device easily used by non-technical consumers". Most tech gadgets fail this test. While they can be used to a certain extent by non-experts, if anything goes wrong the user is unlikely to be able to deal with it. How many of us have to visit their parents after a power outage to reset the clocks? What happens when over-the-air digital TV stations change frequencies and are no longer accessible?
As a historic note, when the Apple II was first advertised in Byte magazine and other places, the advert showed a non-geeky couple using their Apple II in the kitchen. Get it? It's an Appliance. Brilliant marketing, forshadowing huge success in selling to non-technical consumers.
"Wearable" is a logical successor to "portable". I think a key paradigm decision to be made is whether computing should be local like a computer or smartphone, or relegated to the "cloud". It would define what chips would dominate this market.
Ok, I get the feeling that these wearables will not be driven by keyboard input so much as sensory input. So it would not be a computing-intensive device at all, with an operating system, etc. (So no blue screen of death!) Probably calculator-type chip with sensors. It's a new direction for sure, for the foundries and their customers.
I don't think this is too far off! I can see this ability being common in the next few years. I think there's a big enough market for it that we're just waiting for ways to sense these things accurately that don't involve breaking the skin!
We can just combine the two terms "wearable" & "Appliance" to coin a new term Wearable Appliances to suit these new generation of devices .
But I would prefer more accessorires than the Appliances on my body. Because with accessories I can pick and choose and make own system on my body and I can use my smart phone or even some other wi-fi device to collect the data from these accessories and procees it.