Someone call Mario and Luigi - it's been one hell of a leaky week for companies. We started the week off getting pictures of Fitbit's upcoming smartwatch, which looks a lot like a Fitbit Blaze and Surge had a child. Then we rounded things off with a look at Amazon's upcoming touchscreen-enabled Echo.
In between all of that, we learned that Apple Watch sales have nearly doubled, and in fact overtook Fitbit sales. Fitbit ain't worried though, as it shrugged off reports of production trouble on its upcoming smartwatch. And oh yeah, it looks like Apple's Siri-powered smart speaker is going to get announced at WWDC in a couple of weeks.
But that's not all that happened this week. Let's take a stroll through the garden of smaller wearable stories from this week. And as always, you can head over to our dedicated news section for the really meaty stuff.
GE's Alexa lamp arrives in September
If you're looking for a real fancy version of Alexa that doesn't look like an 80s movie prop, or take your photo, there's always GE's Alexa lamp. GE has gone quiet since it announced the lamp last year, but this week said that it would be available for purchase in September. The lamp has all the regular Alexa powers, but it also has smart light features, like changing hues based on the time of day and when you go to sleep. It'll be available for $200, there's no word on UK pricing yet.
AirPod smashes customer satisfaction
Apple made a big deal about AirPods, and the little buggers are still nearly impossible to buy, with a six-week estimated shipping time on Apple's website. According to a new study from respected analyst Ben Bajarin, it looks like all that hoopla is earned. The AirPods have a 98% customer satisfaction rating.
82% of that 98 is very satisfied, while 16% is satisfied. Those numbers are higher than Bajarin's satisfaction ratings for iPhone, 92%, iPad, 92%, and Apple Watch, 97%. Even more impressive, AirPods scored a 75 in the "would you recommend these to a friend?" category, outdoing the iPhone's 72 rating in the same category.
Biodegradable wearables developed
As we all start buying wearable tech, and then upgrading that wearable tech over the years, we're going to start running into a major problem: where do we put all of those old, outdated Fitbits once we're done with them? Well, a bunch of researchers at Stanford University are trying to figure it out.
Their current solution: biodegradable wearables that dissolve into nothing when you pour vinegar on them. It's the thinnest, lightest wearable ever made and, as you can see in the picture, can be held up by human hair. It uses a biodegradable semiconductor synthesized from molecules in tattoo ink, and its film is made out of plant fibers. It could also be used to store data you want to keep private, like temporary medical data.
C by GE gets HomeKit compatibility
When you're in on that HomeKit life it can sometimes feel like slim pickings when you're trying to deck out your smart home. That just got a little better this week, as GE announced its LED light bulbs C-Life and C-Sleep will gain HomeKit support this summer. There'll be a new hub called the C-Reach to give you that HomeKit support, and it'll be available for less than $50 (no word on UK pricing yet).
VR cycling helps man lose 50lbs
We know VR can lead to more immersive experiences, and that it can help people get over trauma, but did you know it could help you lose weight? That's what happened to 36-year-old William Brierly, who used VirZoom's stationary bike with built-in VR game controls. Using the bike with a VR headset allowed him to focus more on the world he was immersed in and less on how tired he felt exercising, he told UploadVR.