google glass
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“For all the Jetsonian innovation packed into Google Glass, the product just couldn’t live down its most glaring flaw: the dork factor. For regular people, the mere idea of a face computer is a creepy nonstarter. To Google, it’s concluded Glass’s stigma is just a fashion problem.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily -  Google Glass
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“Google may have gone back to the drawing board for a rethink of its Glass smart eyewear, but rivals are pressing on with their plans – including Sony, which has made its SmartEyeglass gadget available to pre-order in the UK and Germany.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Sony x SmartEyeglass
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“Google is to stop producing its wearable technology Google Glass in its present form, but is still committed to the idea of smart glasses, the company has said.”

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Decoded Fashion - FashionTech Daily - Google Glass

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Gareth Pugh x Oculus Rift
Image source: dezeen.com

End of year lists are all well and good, but real tech-cessory lovers will be itching to know what’s next. The best indicator of things to come is always the Consumer Electronics Show – starting today through to January 9, CES is set to start off the year-in-tech with a bang. So what does 2015 hold in the balance between fashion and technology? Here’s what we’re looking forward to:

Wearable Payment

The concept of payment devices for the wrist isn’t set to transform the retail landscape in 2015, but it is set to become part of your everyday life. Safer, more convenient and – potentially – a style statement in itself, companies such as Apple, Pebble and Samsung are betting on the wrist for the future of the till-point purchase. We’re on the lookout for bPay, though – Barclaycard’s NFC chip-carrying wristband that you use just like a card. The downside? It’s going to become even easier to overspend – here’s to being in the red, but stylishly clad, in 2015.

Oculus Rift and Fashion Week

Palmer Luckey, who invented the Oculus Rift, is likely to reveal the release dates for the Rift’s consumer version at CES 2015. Whilst fashion designers have started experimenting with VR technology, the next seasonal cycles are likely to see more big design houses take up the challenge of creating fully immersive runway experiences. Back in January 14, Gareth Pugh was commissioned by Selfridges to create a VR experience to mark London Collections: Men’s. The ground-breaking result, in which even the Rift headset was customised into a wearable bespoke Pugh piece, might be a sign of times to come in collaborations between Rift and the fashion world.

Better looking smart glasses?

We spy with our little eyes…some better-looking ‘Glass’ alternatives in the year to come. One of the problems Google found in making Glass appeal to the general public in 2015 included the fact that – unlike normal spectacles – people don’t want to wear what, in its current version, is a very obvious device all the time. Samsung’s alternative is a clip-on version – a compact, single-lens display module that you can clip onto your normal spectacles to turn them into smart glasses. According to commentators, the device is likely to go on commercial sale within the year. What’s more, as the Smart Watch marketplace booms with new contenders, we’re betting there’ll be a Pebble equivalent set to disrupt the Smart Glasses sphere, too.

Reported by Claire Healy

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“In the interest of learning how those things are coming together, [Fashionista] rang up Isabelle Olsson, the lead designer of Google Glass, to hear about how she and the rest of her team operate.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Isabelle Olsson

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Tech and the perfect Pout
Image source:szifon.com

As the fashion industry grows increasingly smitten with wearable technology, a previously overlooked aspect to the commercial potential of these technologies is gaining traction. The cosmetics industry – including those beauty arms of global fashion brands that are now as vital to revenue as handbags and shoes – has started to embrace new technologies in a bid to harness customer loyalty and boost business. From Google Glass as make up tutorials to facial mapping beauty apps, the new beauty brand initiatives all share a common objective: to attract a digitally savvy customer, who wants her online/offline shopping experience to be as seamless as her go-to red lipstick.

One such cosmetics brand that is keeping ahead of the pack this season is YSL Beauté, the L’Oréal-owned subset of the fashion powerhouse. Launched in London’s Selfridges last week, the brand are hoping to transform party season beauty routines with their Google Glass collaboration – which will give Glass to YSL make-up artists in order to capture the make-up application through the eyes of a professional. Does it work? Take it from one who has tried it – and who doesn’t know the first thing about a five-step smokey eye – this is an equal parts fun and useful service. Once the application process is fully recorded, you get a personalised email package once you get home: including ‘Before’ and ‘After’ pictures, the personalised Glass-recorded tutorial in full and, of course, a customised list of products to purchase.

Other whisperings of tech in the beauty industry have come direct from L’Oréal, Makeup Genius is the brand’s beauty app for iPhones and iPads (Decoded Fashion reported). Using a facial mapping technology, the app is a virtual make-up tester that allows you to layer beauty looks onto your face using your device’s front facing camera. These looks might be your own creations or curated by make-up artists, but they all use purchasable L’Oréal Paris products as standard. Thanks to the app’s sophisticated algorithm that is able to spot up to 64 data points on your face, the app moves with you as you turn your head or change your expression.

From multi-national corporations to a less established name on the scene, MiniLuxe is a chain of beauty salons that is set to disrupt the big players of the industry. The high tech company, which aims to do for beauty what Starbucks did for the coffee world, is increasing its physical locations throughout the US as well as employing high tech point-of-sale systems. MiniLuxe’s large data mining and collection system can respond to changes in the environment that might lead to higher or lower bookings of manicures and pedicures – for example, better weather will lead to more bookings, and that will require more staff in store. This responsive approach extends to the customer experience, with the company recently announcing a new booking app for customer’s smartphones (and a $23 million round of investment).

The key reason why these three different business models of the beauty world are going about implementing tech in the right way? Rather than trying to directly recreate the invaluable in-store experience of trying on make-up, they’re adding dimensions to the process of purchasing make-up at every possible point of contact. When it comes to attracting make-up lovers, it’s this combination of online and offline integration that makes for the real lesson in beauty.

Reported by Claire Healy

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“Forget bloggers, vloggers and YouTube tutorials, get your own at the Yves Saint Laurent Beauté counter with its Google Glass make-up tutorials.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - YSL Google Glass Tutorials
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“Intel Corp. will supply the electronic brains for a new version of Google Inc. ’s Glass device expected next year, people familiar with the matter said, part of a push by the semiconductor giant into wearable technology.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - Google Glass and Intel
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“Even though Google’s head-worn computer is going nowhere, the technology is sure to march on.”

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Decoded Fashion - Fashion Tech Daily - FTDaily

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Decoded Fashion Westfield Future Fashion Hackathon

Last weekend saw the world’s first hackathon in a shopping centre: From September 20th to 21st, London’s Westfield Shopping Centre (and it’s shoppers) bore witness to a 24 hour hackathon. A group of sixty elite hackers from varied backgrounds teamed up and worked through the night to find solutions to the fashion, beauty and retail industries’ problems.

Participants included developers from the likes of fashion retailer ASOS and augmented reality agency Holition; marketing minds such as senior lecturers from the London College of Fashion; and designers with backgrounds in fields such as UX design for large retailers. The competition was filled with winner from past hackathons, such as the Salesforce Hackathon, the LinkedIn and EE Hackathon, BBC News Hack and Google Chrome Drone Hackathon, along with members of Women Who Code. It was sure to be competitive!

On both Saturday and Sunday, industry experts from Google, Twitter, AllSaints, Front Row I/O were on hand to mentor teams and help them tweak their concepts. The event was accompanied by an exhibition of new technologies around the fashion, beauty and retail space. Westfield shop goers were able to test out the L’Oréal Makeup Genius, try on Google Glass, find the perfect coat using the Fashion 3D augmented reality mirror, and use vrAse to turn their smartphone into a virtual reality headset. Also available to try: the touch-responsive Displair air display; the award-winning 3D controller Leap Motion which requires only your hands, the world’s first bracelet that can charge a phone upon a mere touch, by QDesigns; and a Sound Chamber by NudeAudio. Children were also provided coding classes by FireTech Camp, London’s only tech focussed day campus for kids aged 9 – 17, and CuteCircuit held a fashion show to showcase their innovative designs.

On Sunday, the teams pitched their ideas to our panel of judges: Caroline Rush, CEO of the British Fashion Council; Myf Ryan, Marketing Director UK & Europe, Westfield; Lisa Bridgett, Director of Global Sales & Marketing at the Net-A-Porter Group; Lee Epting, Vice President at the Samsung Media Solution Centre Europe; Pia Stanchina, Senior Industry Manager at Google; and Millie Mackintosh. They judged the concepts according to four criteria: Is it innovative? Would it excite consumers? Is it cool/beautiful? and Does it solve a real problem?

Decoded Fashion - Weekly Stories - Decoded Fashion Westfield Future Fashion Hackathon Winners SkipQ

And the winner? SkipQ, a system that works as an automatic check-out for fast fashion retailers: using unique removable security tags and detachers that only allow the removal of security tags of items that have been paid for, it allows users to pay for an item of clothing on their phone in-store, and leave the store. The SkipQ team will fly to San Francisco for three nights, to receive mentoring from industry leaders of Silicon Valley, including Westfield Labs’ Global Chief Digital Officer Kevin McKenzie. Congratulations!

The audience pick was ShopAID(E), which was designed to enrich the personal shopping experience through allowing users to shop with friends and influencers around the world by way of donating to charity. Check out all the highlights here.

Reported by Anna Abrell

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