Last updated: 05 July 2017
Wearable technology is the new trend, sparking innovation in all areas: communication, fitness, safety, photography, and more. But one detail is sorely lacking: Style.
Most wearables either look like a small smartphone attached to your wrist or one of those silicon bracelets everyone used to wear. So many consumers, like myself, have been waiting for someone to combine the technological features of wearables with a sense of fashion.
But who says smart can’t be beautiful?
Earlier this year, GUESS was honored with the CES Innovation Honoree Award – a prize typically awarded to more traditional tech companies – for the development of the Guess Connect smartwatch, launching in October. The watch features voice command with a built in microphone, customized vibrations, a notification bar, and modes that connect to your smartphone for weather, camera, and music. Compatible with both iOS and Android and styled for both men and women, this watch acts as the first true example of technology coupled with the style that consumers have been craving.
Cuff is also jumping on the bandwagon with their new line of smart jewelry. A small device that fits into different pieces of jewelry vibrates in sync with your smartphone so you can stay notified even when your phone isn’t within reach. Cuff also works as an emergency alert system. One push of a button sends a help notification to your designated emergency contacts with your exact location, live audio of your surroundings, and any programmed information like your insurance information, blood type, or allergies. In 2016, the jewelry will also serve as a fitness tool: counting steps and calories. All for the consumer-friendly price of $60.
More and more designers – such as Diane Von Furstenberg, Ralph Lauren, Tag Heuer, and Gucci – are turning toward technology, capitalizing on the gap left by companies who specialize in just that. Not only are their products easier to market, they are also easier to buy. GUESS’s digital marketing chief, Tarra del Chiaro makes the point that designers already know how to access fashion retailers, and therefore, customers: “We [already] have local 15,000 distributors in 115 countries, which could make a big difference to us.”
Deepa Sood, CEO and co-founder of Cuff, once said, “Technology and fashion make strange bedfellows.” But in a recent survey by Esquire, eighty percent of people polled believe that technology must integrate with fashion trends in the future. Looks like they better get used to each other soon.