Hardened Wearables Bring Help Into the Field
An article on Automation World.com discusses with examples how voice-controlled, hands-free rugged hardened wearable devices are bringing virtual and augmented reality to field service, training and other uses and especially ones designed for industrial use.
Companies mentioned in the article include RealWear Inc (AREA member), Tacit, Chevron, Microsoft, Honeywell and Trimble.
The equipment attaches to a hard hat or directly to the wearer’s head, allowing navigation of critical repair data by voice, even when the wind sounds like a jet engine. Unlike wearable devices that might be used in gaming applications, these wearables are hardened to meet the rigors of industrial environments.
They are still generally affordable—typically ranging from $2,000 to $5,000 per device before discounts—especially when you consider the potential ROI they can bring to industry.
“When the machine is down, the company is losing money,” says Andy Lowery, CEO of RealWear, which makes ruggedized wearables. Being able to make quicker repairs is a huge benefit, he adds, and so is increased worker safety.
Key points mentioned in the article:
- Return on investment
- Knowledge transfer from retiring workers to younger generation
- Remote assistance
- Ruggedized wearables that work in the most punishing of environments
- On call experts
- Remote assistance saves time and money