​Star Wars-ables: 21 wearables from a galaxy far far away

Wearable tech from a galaxy far far away
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The Force Awakens, and with it our wearable technology focus on the Star Wars franchise.

With the first of this latest batch of now Disney-branded space epics released today at the cinema, we've taken a look back through Episodes I-VI to see how clued-up George Lucas and his team were when they kitted out their characters for adventures in their futuristic-looking worlds - even if it was a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away.

So, was Vader into virtual reality? Was Qui-gon crazy for the quantified-self? Here's our full list of all the wearables from the Star Wars films. Let us know if we've missed your favourite, and, of course, may the Fitbit Force be with you.

Lobot's headgear (Episode V)


Nasty trade-off, this one. Lobot's headgear, technically known as the AJ^6 cyborg construct, is a bit of a deal with the devil. This cybernetic device attaches round the back of the user's head and boosts his or her ability to perform complex calculations. But that increase in productivity comes at the cost of a loss of your personality. It doesn't look like the kind of thing you could take off and put on your bedside table at night.

Darth Maul smartwatch (Episode I)


Hard to tell what all the functions of this all silver space bracelet are. The only ones we really see from its owner, Darth Maul, are a little bit of cellular communication and his remote controlling of those probe droids which head out onto the sands of Tatooine to bring back the news of the Jedi. Any optical heart-rate monitoring, you think?

Darth Vader (Episodes III, IV, V & VI)


A Sith Lord he might be in name but Darth Vader is more accurately an exosuit with a bad attitude. Used to patch up the crispy remains of Anakin Skywalker, it allowed the once Jedi knight to walk around without using a hoverchair at the expense of being a tad on the heavy side. More importantly, though, it was also a mobile, wearable life support system which meant he could actually breathe. Not ideal, but tough as old boots and it certainly looked the part too.

Z-6 Jetpack (Episodes II, V & VI)


Worn by Boba Fett and his father Jango before him, the Z-6 Jetpack is one of the tools of choice for a successful bounty hunter. A big blast can get you as high as 70m vertically which is all you should need to regain the upper hand from what was previously a tight spot. There's also a tidy little missile launcher tucked in there too.

Droids (Episodes I, II, III, IV, V & VI)


Staple of any true smart home is its robot automatons and the entire Star Wars franchise has that in spades in the many shapes of the droids. There are medical droids, cooking droids, bar-tending droids, battle droids, agricultural droids and all sorts of other kinds - including, of course, protocol droids and astromech droids - there to do the bidding of any organic creature and generally make life simpler.

Boushh voice changer (Episode VI)


Yotoh, yotoh. If you need to speak a language without knowing a word of it and want to change your voice to sound like an Ubese bounty hunter named Boushh, then some kind of unexplained piece of wearable tech inside your helmet disguise is going to come in handy.

Anakin's arm (Episode III)


The Force must have been seriously strong with Count Dooku because 80-year-old Christopher Lee barely broke a sweat when he took out Obi-wan Kenobi before quite literally disarming Anakin Skywalker. In return, Anakin got this - a very robotic looking Mecho-arm. While it wasn't designed with cosmetics at the forethought, it was, at least, a lot stronger than his original biological version.

Lando's smartwatch (Episode V & VI)


There are one or two smartwatches that pop up in the Star Wars franchise but Billy Dee Williams's Lando wears them best. This particular one from Empire is used to communicate with Lobot but he does seem to pick up a slightly different, standard-issue, Rebel Alliance model later on in the franchise.

Roamer 6 breath mask (Episode V)


There's a few breath masks here and there within the franchise but the most famous are the Roamer 6 models fitted in the Millennium Falcon as worn by Han and Chewy inside the belly of that massive space slug in the Hoth asteroid field. Six versatile filters meant it could provide enough breathable air to last for six hours plus 10 minutes of compressed air if there was no ambient atmosphere to purify.

Jedi rebreather (Episodes I & III)


Another standard issue item from the Jedi toolkit is the A99 aquata breather which is an over-complicated way of describing those super-compact aqualungs that Qui-gon and Obi-wan use to swim underwater into the Gungan kingdom. Pretty useful, really. Where do we sign up?

ZX miniature flame projector (Episode II)


Happiness is a miniature flamethrower tucked up your sleeve - at least if you're Jango Fett. It's the perfect tool for flame grilling the odd unsuspecting Jedi obsessed with fair play and with barely a thought beyond having to deflect the odd blaster pulse. Jango used it to singe the brows of both Obi-wan and Master Windu before meeting his sticky end at the Force-guided saber of the latter. Very handy at home for marshmallows.

Comms headsets (Episodes II & III)


Possibly the worst looking wearables in Star Wars are the comms headsets that the two young Jedi use while flying their Eta-2 Actis-class interceptor spacecraft at the beginning of Revenge of the Sith. Looking more like golden tiaras or delicate telepath bands, it's a fairly over-engineered way of staying in radio contact.

Midi-chlorians detector (Episode I)


The ultimate in Jedi connected health gadgets, Qui-gon's handy pocket Midi-chlorians detector goes off its little rocker when it meets Anakin Skywalker. Take a little blood sample, plug it into the reader in tricorder style and bingo you get to find out if you've got what it takes to move objects with your mind.

Stormtrooper suits (Episodes III, IV, V & VI)


Big on fear and function over flexibility and comfort, the Galactic Empire's sartorial division came up with the tech-filled Stormtrooper suits to help its grunts on the ground survive in all environments. Each has its own life support systems for both breathing and temperature control as well as a helmet to filter any ambient air. The helmet itself also offered enhanced vision plus they were equipped with utility belts with grappling hooks. All very technical, but still no match for a good blaster.

Luke's hand (Episode VI)


Like father, like son; perhaps chopping someone's limb off is some kind of Jedi petulance slapdown? Who knows. Fortunately for Luke, his dad was a little more generous than Dooku and just took his hand off at the wrist. Unlike his Pop, though, Luke clearly opted for the aesthetic model in the catalogue. Probably a little easier for the props and special effects team to manage in the 1980s too.

Utility belts (Episodes I, II, III, IV, V & VI)


There are plenty of utility belts in the franchise worn by just about everyone. Most of them appear to be for decorative reasons but we do get one or two actual uses where we find out what's inside - not least of which is Luke and Leia's swing over a chasm in the Death Star. That clinch gets ickier every time we see it.

Whipcord thrower (Episodes II, V & VI)


Another Fett family favourite, the whipcord is ideal for tangling up one's foe. Incapacitated, it's then far easier either to plop them into carbonite before you collect your bounty or simply deliver the coup de grâce if the wanted poster gives you the liberty of choosing between dead or alive. Great at rendering blasters inoperable; only buys you a few seconds if there's a lightsaber involved.

TIE fighter pilot suit (Episodes IV, V & VI)


TIE fighters had no life support systems on board so it was down to the clone pilots themselves to wear special exosuits to help them breathe while out on missions. These 'vac-heads', as they were known, had those large helmets with gas tubes that connected to air supplies on the front of their outfits. Doesn't sound like the best job in the galaxy.

Alliance flight helmet (Episodes IV, V & VI)


Not the most high tech wearable you'll find but the standard issue Rebel Alliance flight helmets did come with one or two chips. There's a retractable polarizing visor to keep your vision tuned to the specifics of space flight, some air converters for, er, converting air, in space, apparently; and, of course, a radio mic and speaker set for keeping in touch with Reds 1-5, the Gold team and everyone back at HQ.

Thermal imaging goggles (Episode II)


There are binoculars all over Star Wars but the only set of actual tech goggles you'll find is at the beginning of Attack of the Clones where an assassin uses them to find out which heavy Jedi is hitching a ride on his homing droid. (Answer: it's Obi-wan)

Tauntaun (Episode II)


Technology, it might not be, but are you seriously expecting us miss out on this jape of the century? Catching hypothermia out in the snows of Hoth? Simply slice open a dying tauntaun with your lightsaber and wear it like a sleeping bag until your buddy can get the shelter up. Warning: they smell worse on the inside.

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