The chill of a Hungarian winter brought home to me how gloves are being transformed by ubiquitous smartphones and tablets. Because where else are you likely to use your mobile phone than when … well, mobile? Let alone if you try to check Google Maps on it while walking, or if you try to read an ebook on your touchscreen device while out and about. I had to do this several times this winter before I invested in a pair of touchscreen gloves, and the result was a mess of needless fumbling. And despite my ebook addiction, I know I spend far less time on the phone than many others, so I doubt I’m an exceptionally heavy user in this respect.
Luckily, technology has come to the rescue for the problem it created, and created a whole new market for tech accessory gloves. Trust me, there’s nothing like a winter of day-on-day sub-zero temperatures to convince you that these are more than a gimmick. And there are styles and types to suit all tastes and wallets, from cheap fun fashion woolies to more elegant models from brands like Napo.
Plus, the one other most likely scenario for using a touchscreen device while on the move, driving, also now has gloves specifically made to suit. After all, dedicated GPS navigation devices are candidates for the most used of all in-car devices, and I know from Hungarian taxis that many drivers are now using regular generic tablets as their nav tools of choice. So either way, drivers are likely to want touchscreen interaction. And taxi drivers who turn the heat down in their cabs in winter are just one class of driver who is going to be very grateful that they can use their device without chilling their fingers.