Wearable Technology in Fashion

By Harrison Bruce
wearable tech in fashion

Emerging Technologies: Ready for the Future

Wearable technology is everywhere; you just weren’t paying attention. It’s on your wrist. It’s on your face. It’s in your shoes. It is your watch, your glasses, your sportswear. It introduces new capabilities and resources to your day-to-day living.

Nowadays, the latest wearable technology in fashion is commonly described as garments and accessories that integrate circuitry, produced by technologically significant means or are made of technologically significant materials, be it LEDs (lights) in your dress, accelerometers (tilt sensors) in your shoes, t-shirts with print patterns designed with a computer algorithm or Peltier modules (heaters) in your jacket.

It is unique; it is fast, it is undervalued, and all too commonly misused. Unlike PDAs (Personal Digital Assistant) which are handheld gadgets such as cameras and mobile phones; wearable devices are attached to clothing and can be used as adornments or accessories. Though the advancement is still new technology, the concept has existed for decades. The earliest invention in this department was the transition of a traditional pocket watch to a wristwatch in 1904 by Louis Cartier.

The athletic and military industries dominate the wearable technology scene as commercial and research interests to better user performance and communication. Many different companies are creating wearable technologies based on what purpose the consumer will use the watch. These companies include LG, Samsung, Apple, Microsoft, and Sony. Other companies are competing for attention with no forerunner showing, as of yet, of who will control the wearable technology field.

The Newest and Latest

Here are some of the latest wearable technology in fashion that is pushing the wearable tech into health care, fitness, and our broader lives.

Fitbit

Fitbit, a wearable fitness tracker, will assist doctors to predict and intervene before unexpected admissions to the clinic on patients who will not do well on a course of chemotherapy. Doctors will also be able to use the technology in the future for several ways, for example, predict which patients would and would not perform well in clinical trials. Researchers have looked at breast cancer survivor fitness level compared with cognitive decline; how patients can avoid readmission after surgery by movement; and whether patients who are suffering from multiple myeloma are getting enough sleep.

A new transparent, flexible touchpad

Even when the material is bent or stretched, this device can sense the touch of a finger. This will one day help engineers create more advanced wearable touch screens. The latest device is produced with similar materials from which soft contact lenses are made of, hydrogel. You can put this device on pretty much anything. It opens up the possibility to make wearable devices or some robotic skin. The design maintains its sensing capabilities even when it was bent or stretched, and could endure common environmental contaminants such as coffee spills. The pad could also distinguish various fingers simultaneously, which is essential for zooming purpose on a Smartphone.

Fitness Trackers Printed on clothes

Clothing is a very old technology whose foremost uses is to cover the body, keep people warm or cool, and help people to look attractive – despite changing fashion trends; it hasn’t changed much since early humans dressed fur skins over their bodies. However, that is set to change, with various smart bicycle pants, bras, socks, and shirts on or about to hit the market. A tiny sensor is inserted into glasses, sports bra, and shirt will now be able to track your heart rate constantly; record miles walked and estimated calories burned.

These sensors are made possible by scientists who have uncovered new technologies that allow miniature, flexible electrical circuits to be printed onto fabric. From yarn to printable ink that can transfer an electrical impulse, these new technologies are being paired with rugged sensors to produce a unique type of wearable fitness trackers. This technology could take clothing to the next level. For example, it can be used for highly accurate, continuous heart-rate monitoring, which could be key for getting an authentic measurement of calories burnt, recovery time, and workout result for a wearer.

Applications in industries:

Medical technology – The latest technology includes headsets which measure brainwaves and wearable sensing devices to examine personal health. We explore healthcare in more depth here.

In Military – Sensors embedded inside the military suit will assist in the detection of the health, the damaged faced, and the location of the soldier.

Fashion – Designers are interested in designing a trend for wearable technology in the fashion industry by developing attire with LED technology, accessories like glasses and Smart Watches to keep this as a trending theme.

Education – Devices like Google glass; Keygloves, Autographer, etc. are instrumental in the education industry in the teaching and learning process.

Sports – The invention of Alert Shirts has redefined sportswear. These devices use the same type of GPS chip as your phone and sending signals through a Bluetooth Smartphone app. These shirts have been designed to let us in on what the players feel, which means it can detect how fast they’re moving, which direction they’re facing, and how quickly they accelerate and decelerate.

In the Future

These devices were once thought about only on films and in comic books. In today’s advancing world, smart watches are now real objects that people can use to enhance their daily life routine. Given this is the first decade with anything such as this product, many advances will happen quickly into creating one that practically runs our lives.

Only time will tell if the smart watch is a phase or an object that changes life for every individual. Lives were changed, not too long ago with the invention of the cell phone. Improving technology and going a step further is where each of these companies is headed. Make sure you keep an update on the latest wearable technology in fashion ruling the wearable market. This will help you stay a step ahead in the digital curve.

The fastest growing industries are fashion and technology. We are glimpsing at much different exciting partnerships between fashion and technology now, but this is just a tip of the iceberg, let us take a moment to imagine what the future will become.