Posted by Isobel Oliphant on September 5, 2014 07:24 PM
Wearable tech is in the spotlight this week with a slew of devices unveiled at two once-opposed, now merging, worlds.
At the IFA consumer electronics show in Berlin, brand innovators including Asus, Sony and Samsung are showcasing smartwatches and activity-tracking smartbands, while Motorola released its Moto 360 smartwatch today. And as New York Fashion Week got underway, Intel launched its MICA band in collaboration with Opening Ceremony and announced a smartwatch with Fossil; Rebecca Minkoff (partnering with Case-Mate) and CuteCircuit showcased their respective takes on wearable tech; and a panel today explored the intersection of fashion and technology.
Wearables are no longer the stuff of science fiction, and the future of fashion (and the fashion of technology) is here, as the high-end brands help the garment industry evolve from textiles to tech styles, and Fashion Week is morphing into Fashion Geek Chic.
IDC estimates that more than 19.2 million wearables are expected to ship this year, tripling last year’s sales figures, while wearables could become a $50 billion industry in five years according to Credit Suisse research. Yet many observers feel that widespread adoption hinges on a true marriage of form and function.
Apple devotees are certainly waiting to see if the brand's highly-anticipated smartwatch (and just-revealed collaboration with designer Marc Newson) will strike that delicate balance when revealed next week at its first ever product launch with fashionistas on the invite list.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 12, 2014 09:41 AM
Tata launches new airline Vistara on social media as Jaguar, Land Rover sales boost business.
Chiquita bananas brand sparks bidding war.
Axe goes celibate in ad for new scent.
Uber goes after Lyft and vice versa as they seek to supplant taxi industry.
Robin Williams dies of suspected suicide at age 63 as brands and fans pay tribute and ABC News apologizes.
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Amazon and Disney dispute more than pricing as new Fire Phone ads tout Firefly technology.Continue reading...
Posted by Brittany Messenger on July 25, 2014 05:05 PM
As if there were any doubt, the Wearable Tech Expo this week in New York made one thing is certain: the branded wearable space is ready for take-off—but not before sorting out a few potential hurdles.
In her keynote address at the conference, Myriam Joire, Pebble’s Chief Evangelist, identified battery life technology and usability challenges as two key issues the industry needs to solve.
"If you want to go beyond us, the early adopters, the tech savvy users, you have to solve usability challenges," Joire commented. "The people who buy a smartwatch at Target don't want to do anything complicated. They want it to add value to their lives. Notifications alone have value right now. A busy mom carrying groceries who gets a notification that she has a text message and doesn't have to pull her phone out—that's gold."
But is product innovation enough to grow the industry? While improvements to battery life and usability will allow wearables to serve their users better and longer, how will they get consumers to even give them a shot?Continue reading...
Posted by Sarah McLaughlin on July 9, 2014 05:03 PM
Celebrity Pop Quiz: Comedienne. Pants suits. Dancing. Converse.
Who am I talking about? Ellen DeGeneres? Exactly!
When you sit back and think about Ellen and her brand, those things pretty much sum it up. So imagine my surprise when I read in WWD about her E.D. That's the name of the lifestyle brand that the daytime TV talk show host is developing with Tory Burch's ex-husband.
That's right: later this year you can surround yourself in all things Ellen, from your body to your pet to your home, with a "fully conceived" lifestyle collection that includes chic homewares such as candles, plates, decorative pillows, and PJs to lounge in.
Unless it’s a funny decorative pillow, however, I’m not sure I trust that Ellen as the authority on how I jazz up my sofa. It makes you wonder if she knows what a lifestyle brand actually is. It makes you wonder if any celebrity does.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on June 18, 2014 09:08 AM
Cannes Lions continues (above, Scott Ferris, Microsoft's GM of content advertising) with first round of Grand Prix winners announced.
Amazon phone reveal by "secretive" R&D lab today in Seattle sparks speculation, as BlackBerry joins Amazon's Appstore.
YouTube to launch paid music service.
GM's Barra is back on the hotseat today on Capitol Hill as automaker faces $10 billion recalls suit.
Beats headphones have been banned at the World Cup.
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Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 7, 2014 01:19 PM
Riding the wave of wearable tech at CES 2014, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich took center Monday night to announce that the company is "in the midst of a transformation from world of screens and devices to a world of immersive experiences," as he proceeded to show-off Jarvis, a smart headset with earbuds designed for runners with embedded heart-rate sensors, eliminating the standalone chest strap design.
Jarvis, a speech-driven VPA like Siri, draws power from a phone's microphone jack, so there’s no need for a separate charger. Paired with an Android smartphone app, it lets users check directions or check out nearby restaurants, too. Krzanich also showcased a geo-fencing smartwatch that isn't dependent on a smartphone connection that could be used to track children's whereabouts.
But if it's going to be wearable, it must be fashionable. And so just as Apple has added several fashion heavyweights to its executive arsenal, such as Yves St Laurent's Paul Deneve and Burberry's Angela Ahrendts, Intel announced it has partnered with Barneys New York, The Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA), and global fashion retailer Opening Ceremony to bring couture to worn devices. "As we go through the year, you will see more partnerships as we develop these technologies," Krzanich added.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on January 7, 2014 09:22 AM
Intel jumps into wearables with earbuds, watch.
BMW rolls out driverless car at CES racetrack.
Apple says App Store sales topped $10 billion in 2013.
AT&T lets content firms subsidize users' data costs.
American Airlines lands a flight after camera is found in bathroom.
Audi and BMW both plan laser headlamps this year.
BYD says Chinese cars are headed to US by late 2015.
Fitbit partners with Tory Burch for high-fashion wearable tech.
GE to spend $1 billion on Thermo Fisher buyout.
GM sees Opel/Vauxhall increase European share thanks to new Adam minicar.
Goodyear sees tire workers in France hold managers hostage.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on October 23, 2013 04:41 PM
The brand graveyard is littered with those that have lost their way, primarily because they try to change who they are and what they stand for. As any brand marketer knows, it is exceedingly difficult to change the perception of an established brand.
Coach is a good example of that difficulty. Once renowned for its leather goods, the luxury brand has made a concerted effort this year to reinvent itself as a lifestyle brand with broader appeal beyond its signature wallets and handbags. The company has introduced an array of products, including footwear, women's apparel, jewelry, sunglasses, and watches. In an attempt to gain the attention of men, Coach even brought to market a luxury baseball glove with accompanying bat in July. (The bat has since been discontinued.) That gambit, at least, seems to be paying off, as sales of men's accessories—bags, driving gloves, and even alligator-wrapped flasks—have increased by 25 percent, according to Bloomberg Businessweek.
Unfortunately, the men's line has been about the only bright spot for the company. North America same-store sales dropped nearly 7 percent in the three months to September 28, and the company said to expect a similar skid through the end of the fiscal year, which closes in June 2014. Ironically, Coach continues to move its discounted handbags at its outlet stores, which account for 60 percent of North American sales (double the sales from seven years ago), according to Quartz. Of course, that simply reinforces the fact that Coach is really a one-product brand.Continue reading...