Let us begin our discussion with a recent example of how digital wearable and consumer fashion interacts with each other in a market-driven way. When the smartwatch was launched a few years ago, it became popular but everyone admitted that such a high tech watch is not worth wearing for fashion sake. Over the time many people were of opinion that smartwatches are actually not wearable as a fashionable accessory except for the geeks. In the same manner, smart clothing today is facing the similar challenges.
How to make smart clothing more fashionable or how to incorporate smart wearable technology in the fashion wear? These two questions are in the center of all considerations concerning fashion wear and smart garments.
- Are Mainstream Buyers Ready For Smart Clothing?
As of now, all the trends show that mainstream customers are not ready to sport smart clothing. The appeal of smart clothing has mostly been limited to niche consumers such as sportsmen, athletes, professionals in workplaces, etc. These niche consumers do not mind sporting smart wear simply because such wearable comes as obligatory for their professional roles and purposes. Smart clothing mostly serves professional and utilitarian purposes for them.
- The Biggest Hurdle For The Adoption Of Smart Clothing By Textile Industry
Why the textile industry is not seriously intent on incorporating IoT technologies in the production of garments? What is the key preventive block for the textile sector in not allowing widespread adoption of smart technologies? As per most industry experts, it is the price which is preventing high tech maneuvers in textile. Considering the limited market reach and experimental nature of smart garments, such wearable is bound to be pricey enough compared to the regular ones. Moreover, until such garments are mass produced and mass marketed, they will be mostly considered as designer, unique pieces with a high price tag.
- Usefulness In Real Life Situations Is A Big Issue Too
Smart wearable and garments must be useful in real life situations. Irrespective of their features and capabilities, smart wearable needs to solve some problems in the life of the users in a unique way. For instance, the biggest appeal for the smartwatch is the ease of accessing notifications and messages every now and then without really needing to take out the mobile device. Does the smart textile offer any such unique value that can make them irreplaceable? Your smart garment can come up with capabilities like measuring the heartbeat and body temperature in real time, but such features may not be appealing for all.
- The Future Of Smart Textile Adoption
Even if it could not really take off well and become a popular wearable tech in the mass market, we just cannot leave our hopes on the promise of smart textile in the near future. After the successful advent of VR and smart wrist devices including smartwatch and fitness bands, we are expecting the next big revolution in the smart wearable to happen with the smart textile only. Worlds biggest tech brands are already keen to make smart garment a big mass market reality. Google with its Project Jacquard is working for some time to deliver the latest in smart garments. Expectations are mounting up and in few years we can see smart textile to appear with market-moving dynamics.