The Glitz and Gigabytes of Wearable Tech
From fitness gadgets to smart glasses and smart watches … what will the world’s techies come up with next? Did you guess clothing or jewelry? The Guardian article titled, “Is wearable technology set to take over our wardrobes?” proclaims the rise of smart fashion, from glamorous LED dresses and gemstone rings to utilitarian – but cutting-edge – military and healthcare uniforms. Researchers predict that wearable technology will become a part of our wardrobe in the future. Some even say that smart clothes could possibly outdo fitness bands and smart watches as the next largest wearable tech segment by 2016.
CuteCircuit, a small London-based company, started designing digital fashion in 2004. Their goal was to produce interactive, playful clothing while maintaining a visual appeal. Dresses, jackets, and purses display messages from social media or mesmerizing digital patterns. Singer Katy Perry drew attention to this small company in 2010 by wearing one of their pieces to the Met Gala. CuteCircuit is now a part of New York’s fashion week, making a statement with new fashion technology controlled by – what else? – their app.
Ringly, a classic, emerald-cut gemstone ring that flashes and/or vibrates when you receive texts, emails or phone calls. The purpose of this glam device is for those who are expecting an important message while at the same time disconnecting from their mobile device. It’s a great tool to use in the company of your friends and family so they feel as though they have your undivided attention (while keeping you up to speed on important news).
Intelligent Textiles has a more purposeful approach in developing wearable technology. The company weaves electronic circuits into the fabric of military uniforms, enabling soldiers to carry fewer devices and supplies in the field. Intelligent Textiles is also looking into the health and medical areas to improve communication issues with patients.
Do you think wearable tech will take over our wardrobes in the future? Or is this a fashion fad doomed for obsolescence like last season’s styles?
Marie Ruff is Communications Senior Manager at NAIOP.