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Wearable Technology Show 2017: New Developments in Smart Apparel and Mixed Reality 관리자 (2018/02/21 11:24:55)

Wearable Technology Show 2017: New Developments in Smart Apparel and Mixed Reality

  • The Fung Global Retail & Technology team attended the Wearable Technology Show 2017 in London this week. During the two-day event, we saw the latest developments in the smart apparel industry, including innovations in augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and mixed reality (MR).
  • The fashion industry is still in the early stages of adoption in terms of smart apparel, but the future of the technology is promising. Collaboration between apparel companies and technology firms is key to product development. The technology can enable apparel retailers to improve engagement with consumers.
  • MR is a fundamental shift from 2D to 3D access to digital information. It holds important implications for the way consumers interact with physical products and digital environments. At present, tech giants are key in the development of the technology, but in the future, fashion companies will likely play a significant role in the widespread adoption of MR among consumers.

The Fung Global Retail & Technology team attended the Wearable  Technology Show 2017 on March 7 and 8 in London. The event showcases the latest and future developments in smart textiles, wearable technology, AR, VR, MR and the Internet of Things.

Our focus on the first day of the show was the current state of the smart apparel industry and the relationship between apparel companies, tech firms and retailers in terms of product development and distribution of the technology. On day two, we saw the latest developments in, and future potential of, MR.

The Current State of the Smart Apparel Industy

One of the main talks on day one of the show summarized the current state of the smart apparel market. Ben Cooper, who works for global apparel and footwear firm VF Corp., moderated a panel that included Sven Böhmer, from smart fabrics manufacturer Statex; Matthew Drinkwater, from the London College of Fashion; Mili Tharakan, from Tilt, a startup that produces connected play rugs for children; and Michael Reidbord, who works for wearable technology and IoT firm Kloog. The discussion focused on three main points:

The value proposition of smart apparel: Beyond utility garments, the market for smart apparel is still in its infancy. In fashion, there is no compelling reason to wear smart apparel, but the functionalities enabled by the technology represent exciting opportunities. For example, smart apparel can enable new forms of communication, such as consumers sharing what they are wearing on social networks.

The rapport between tech and apparel firms: In smart apparel, it is important for apparel and tech companies to collaborate closely throughout the entire product development process. Also, there must be a degree of flexibility: companies should not just focus on their own vision and expect their partners to adapt, but should think in terms of shared JIS standards


The rapport with retailers: Apparel companies can offer a strong proposition to retailers through smart apparel. Connected clothing can enable retailers to see what happens in the after-sales environment, such as when a customer stops wearing the garment. In this way, smart apparel can inform relevant targeted-marketing messages that can be sent to the customer at just the right time.

Here are our other top takeaways on smart apparel:

  • A seminar on “How Wearables Affect Fashion” highlighted that the infrastructure needed for wearables is not in place yet and still requires considerable investment. Challenges also remain with integrating smart technology into clothes and simplifying the supply model to make smart apparel affordable for the mass market.
  • Intelligent Textiles, a firm that uses conductive yarn to create clothing that can sense pressure, stressed that smart textiles are not yet penetrating the mass market and are being adopted on only a small scale—despite the low cost of the technology and the high margin that these products make. The company believes that there is friction between the textile and technology sectors in terms of cost and production synergies.
  • CuteCircuit, a developer of LED garments, introduced the HugShirt, the world’s first haptic telecommunication wearable, and the SoundShirt, a garment that allows people with hearing impairments to feel the sound of music through touch from the shirt. The company noted that the garments are machine washable, rechargeable and lightweight, but that they cannot currently be manufactured on a large scale, which is inhibiting mass-market adoption.
  • Finally, we spoke to AiQ Smart Clothing, a smart apparel technical pdf downloads
     manufacturer exibiting at the show. The company showcased a running outfit with embedded connected technology: the top is made with connective fabric that collects the wearer’s data (such as heart rate), which are then conveyed to a smartphone or other device through a Bluetooth transmitter attached to the garment CLSI quick downloads

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