Poor Digital Experience with Consumer Medical Wearables Is Wearing Thin
July 28, 2022

Gregg Ostrowski

Share this

Across the world, people's appetite to track and analyze data on all things relating to their health and wellbeing continues to rise. From physical activity and heart rate to blood pressure and sleep patterns, we increasingly want to monitor and manage a whole host of health-related metrics.

This explains why the market for consumer medical wearables is one of the fastest growing sectors in the technology industry. Recent data showed that the global wearable healthcare market is projected to reach $30.1 billion by 2026 from $16.2 billion in 2021. According to Deloitte, 320 million consumer medical wearables will ship globally in 2022.

Photo from rapidsos.com

At Cisco AppDynamics, we recently conducted research exploring consumer attitudes and behaviors in relation to wearable technology. The results illustrated the scale of consumer demand and expectation in this area — 37% of people say that they are already using at least one wearable technology device and as many as 73% plan to increase their use of wearable technologies and associated applications over the next 12 months.

There is a real excitement about the potential benefits of wearable technology for people's health and wellbeing, and on overall population health, at a time when many healthcare systems are still reeling from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. In truth, 85% of people agree that wearable technology has the potential to positively transform both their own personal health and public health services as a whole. Without doubt, the impact of people taking a more proactive approach and greater personal responsibility for their own health and wellbeing can only be a good thing.

Data Security and User Experience Is Key to Building Trust

When it comes to wearable technology, data is key. The devices that people wear capture data and feed this through to the growing number of applications that are now available for people to track, analyze and optimize their health and wellbeing. And in an area such as health, where the information captured can be so personally sensitive, the need for consumers to trust that the brands behind these applications are handling their data in a secure way is absolutely essential.

People want real-time access to accurate health data and they want to be able to share their data with friends and family. This is seen as pivotal for a good user experience. But at the same time, they have zero tolerance for brands that fail to protect the privacy and security of their data.

In our study, 87% of global consumers claimed that trust is a critical factor when choosing a wearable medical device or application brand. And, 86% expect companies offering wearable technology and applications to demonstrate a higher standard of protection for their personal data than any other technology they use.

Evidently, wearable technology and application providers need to ensure they are upholding the highest levels of application security in order to build trust with existing customers and to reassure the wider market.

But it's important to recognize that consumer trust is not only built around data privacy and security. Application providers also need to ensure that they are providing seamless experiences at all times, otherwise they risk seeing customers walk away, never to return. Our research provides a pretty stark warning for digital health application providers about the risks of poor IT performance and availability — that's everything from slow or unresponsive pages, password and login issues or difficulties with downloads and installations.

Consumers simply won't put up with any problems when using wearable technology and digital health applications and they're not willing to give second chances. 75% of people claim that they would stop using a specific wearable device or application if they had a single bad digital experience; and a staggering 56% of people claim that a bad digital experience with one wearable device or application would put them off trying other health or wellbeing wearable technology.

To put that into context, if somebody encounters a problem with a wearable device or digital health application, they won't just decide not to use the brand in question again, it's likely they'll turn their back on all wearable technology going forward.

Of course, after the initial disappointment and frustration (and sometime) has passed, some people would probably be willing to give wearable technology another try, but these findings really do showcase the importance people now attach to digital experience and the strong reactions people are having to poorly performing technology.

Unified Visibility Into IT Performance Is Critical to Meet Customer Expectations and Seize the Opportunity for Wearable Technology

With the pressure growing on digital health application owners to deliver frictionless user experiences at all times, it's essential that they have real-time visibility into IT performance up and down the IT stack, for compute, storage, network and public internet, from the customer-facing application to deep down in the back-end. Full-stack observability is vital for technologists to be able to identify and fix issues before they impact users.

But with so much complexity across an increasingly sprawling IT estate, and IT departments being overwhelmed by a constant deluge of data, technologists need a business lens on IT performance data to cut through the noise and pinpoint the data that really matters most. They need to understand which issues could have the biggest impact on customers so they can prioritize their actions in the right places.

By connecting full-stack observability with real-time business metrics, technologists can optimize application performance at all times and ensure they're able to meet heightened consumer expectations. By doing this, digital health application owners can build trust with customers and set themselves up to take full advantage of the massive opportunities that now exist in the wearable technology market.

Gregg Ostrowski is CTO Advisor at Cisco AppDynamics
Share this

The Latest

February 21, 2024

Generative AI will usher in advantages within various industries. However, the technology is still nascent, and according to the recent Dynatrace survey there are many challenges and risks that organizations need to overcome to use this technology effectively ...

February 20, 2024

In today's digital era, monitoring and observability are indispensable in software and application development. Their efficacy lies in empowering developers to swiftly identify and address issues, enhance performance, and deliver flawless user experiences. Achieving these objectives requires meticulous planning, strategic implementation, and consistent ongoing maintenance. In this blog, we're sharing our five best practices to fortify your approach to application performance monitoring (APM) and observability ...

February 16, 2024

In MEAN TIME TO INSIGHT Episode 3, Shamus McGillicuddy, VP of Research, Network Infrastructure and Operations, at Enterprise Management Associates (EMA) discusses network security with Chris Steffen, VP of Research Covering Information Security, Risk, and Compliance Management at EMA ...

February 15, 2024

In a time where we're constantly bombarded with new buzzwords and technological advancements, it can be challenging for businesses to determine what is real, what is useful, and what they truly need. Over the years, we've witnessed the rise and fall of various tech trends, such as the promises (and fears) of AI becoming sentient and replacing humans to the declaration that data is the new oil. At the end of the day, one fundamental question remains: How can companies navigate through the tech buzz and make informed decisions for their future? ...

February 14, 2024

We increasingly see companies using their observability data to support security use cases. It's not entirely surprising given the challenges that organizations have with legacy SIEMs. We wanted to dig into this evolving intersection of security and observability, so we surveyed 500 security professionals — 40% of whom were either CISOs or CSOs — for our inaugural State of Security Observability report ...

February 13, 2024

Cloud computing continues to soar, with little signs of slowing down ... But, as with any new program, companies are seeing substantial benefits in the cloud but are also navigating budgetary challenges. With an estimated 94% of companies using cloud services today, priorities for IT teams have shifted from purely adoption-based to deploying new strategies. As they explore new territories, it can be a struggle to exploit the full value of their spend and the cloud's transformative capabilities ...

February 12, 2024

What will the enterprise of the future look like? If we asked this question three years ago, I doubt most of us would have pictured today as we know it: a future where generative AI has become deeply integrated into business and even our daily lives ...

February 09, 2024

With a focus on GenAI, industry experts offer predictions on how AI will evolve and impact IT and business in 2024. Part 5, the final installment in this series, covers the advantages AI will deliver: Generative AI will become increasingly important for resolving complicated data integration challenges, essentially providing a natural-language intermediary between data endpoints ...

February 08, 2024

With a focus on GenAI, industry experts offer predictions on how AI will evolve and impact IT and business in 2024. Part 4 covers the challenges of AI: In the short term, the rapid development and adoption of AI tools and products leveraging AI services will lead to an increase in biased outputs ...

February 07, 2024

With a focus on GenAI, industry experts offer predictions on how AI will evolve and impact IT and business in 2024. Part 3 covers the technologies that will drive AI: The question on every leader's mind in 2023 was - how soon will I see the return on my AI investment? The answer may lie in quantum computing ...