The Latest in Wellbeing Technologies Reviewed
Brands left, right and centre have treated us to a flurry of health-conscious products over the years, from wearable fitness trackers like Fitbit devices to apps that can help to relieve stress and anguish. By 2022, British consumers will spend £487 per head on “wellness” yearly, says firm GlobalData.
However, there’s now so much choice that it raises the obvious question: which of it should you primarily consider, especially for your company’s staff? Here is a roundup of some especially recent wellbeing tech solutions and how they fare – both generally and in the workplace.
Wearables That Synchronise with Gym Equipment
You might have considered providing your staff with an onsite gym or, at least, discounts valid for use at a nearby, offsite gym. After all, the fitter your employees are, the more sick days they could avert. Still, you may not have realised that wearables compatible with gym gear are already on sale.
MyZone is one purveyor of such wearables, which let users see on-screen feedback – “intuitive, real-time data that is easy to digest to improve their gym experience”, says MyZone CEO Dave Wright in words quoted by The Telegraph. He cites “bespoke targets and gamification” as key motivators.
Google Digital Wellbeing Apps for Android
If you feel addicted to your smartphone, it could strike you as ironic that, yes, an app could empower to loosen your ties to that little slab-like device. However, Google has recently released several such apps for Android devices, as 9to5Google reports.
The apps Unlock Clock and Screen Stopwatch each give you a live wallpaper indicating how much time you’ve spent on your handset since unlocking it. These apps are stress-relieving, but not quite as fun as Activity Bubbles, where your phone usage manifests itself as growing bubbles on-screen.
Google’s Paper Phone
Just when you thought it was weird enough for Google to encourage people to make virtual reality headsets out of cardboard with Google Cardboard, the search giant has started suggesting that you even swap your phone for a paper-based alternative.
Here’s how it works: to the Paper Phone app, you specify smartphone content, like task lists, contact lists, recipes and more, especially important to you. The app will then give you a paper “phone” to print out and fold into phone size. A nice idea, but… isn’t it really just a paper notebook in disguise?
Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs)
Admittedly, these programmes aren’t exactly new; their genesis can be traced back to Johnson & Johnson’s Live for Life programme, which was introduced back in 1979 and formed the template for many corporate wellness schemes introduced since.
However, according to one estimate cited by Forbes last year, only about 45% of UK-based companies, until recently, were offering such schemes. Besides, the average EAP’s engagement rate is well under 40%.
Fortunately, a visit to https://www.lifeworks.com/uk/ can enlighten you about the EAP from LifeWorks, where your entire workforce can be proactively handed the support they need when they need it, making for a truly modern solution.