Ready for wearables to be fashionable?

Technology and fashion.  What better topic to cover on this blog? This week there is no shortage of coverage to review, from Fashion Week to Apple’s big iWatch reveal on Tuesday.

Starting with Fashion Week, we saw two designers present smart jewelry as part of their  Spring/Summer 2015 collections. First, Rebecca Minkoff (with help from Case-Mate) unveiled a smart bracelet as an introduction to a collection of accessories that sync with phones to provide call and message alerts as well as double as a USB device. The bracelets communicate with your phone via a Bluetooth signal. There is also a mini charger in the collection, designed to fit in a small clutch. These accessories will be available at Rebecca Minkoff and Nordstrom stores just in time for holiday and range in price from $40 – $120.

Opening Ceremony Wearable Bracelet

Opening Ceremony x Intel via Fast Company

Another newsworthy designer wearable came from Opening Ceremony, who collaborated with Intel to make fashionable bracelets dubbed MICA (or, My Intelligent Communication Accessory).   At start, the features of the bracelet include SMS messages, meeting alerts and so-called “general notifications.”  Unlike Minkoff’s BlueTooth enabled bracelet, the MICA is 3G enabled and does not rely on a phone for connectivity. The bracelets charge wirelessly and feature “premium finishes” like pearls and water snakeskin. These accessories will be sold at Barneys and Opening Ceremony stores this holiday season.  No reports on price just yet.

Apple iWatch

Apple iWatch via Engadget

Lastly is, of course, the Apple iWatch. Early next year, you can spend $350 to purchase a watch that syncs with your iPhone 5 or above.  Features include Apple Pay, a slew of sensors, and six different bands to choose from.

Now we’ll watch as the public warms up to wearables that serve purposes beyond fitness tracking.

Lots of good coverage to check out around the web, including:

Quantifying the Runways at New York Fashion Week (Inc Magazine)

Tech Companies and Fashion Designers Try to Put the Wear in Wearables (Wall Street Journal)

Designers are Jumping Into the Wearable Tech Space This New York Fashion Week – Should We Care? (Forbes)

Apple Smartwatch Boost to Wearables (Women’s Wear Daily)

Opening Ceremony and Intel Reveal MICA – My Intelligent Communication Accessory (BusinessWire)

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WEEKLY INDUSTRY ROUND UP: 9.8.2014

Top industry news from last week.  All sources can be found in the hyperlink after the headline:

Retailer News:

  • eBay makes New York Fashion Week instantly shopable. Link
  • Nordstrom said to be first retailer to accept Apple mobile payments. Link
  • Neiman Marcus to open first NYC store. Link
  • Saks introduces user-generated content hub to propel purchases. Link
  • Opening Ceremony reveals Intel-powered smart bracelet. Link
  • Digital driving growth at Belk department stores. Link
  • eBay attracts top fashion brands to sell direct. Link
  • NastyGal lays off up to 10% of its workforce. Link
  • Saks Fifth Avenue takes steps ot build on its legacy. Link
  • Staples adds buy online, pick up in store. Link
  • Yahoo Style, a new digital magazine, arrives just in time for fashion week. Link
  • UPS plans to offer pickup points for online orders in New York City and Chicago. Link
  • Google pledges to fight the sale of fake Luis Vuitton bags online. Link
  • Starbucks to launch express stores. Link
  • Amazon taps USPS to deliver groceries in San Francisco. Link
  • Saks CMO explains sweeping changes. Link
  • DVF’s tech-savvy style. Link
  • Visa rolls out online payments campaign for NFL opening day. Link
  • Joe Zee is Old Navy’s fall style ambassador. Link
  • Crew’s sales picked up last quarter. Link
  • PayPal expands further into offline retail and mobile payments with new PayPal Here SDK. Link
  • It’s Uniqlo vs. Uniqlo at the US Open. Link
  • Path of stolen credit cards leads back to Home Depot stores. Link
  • ASOS seeks CIO. Link
  • Six ways competitors are trying to kill Amazon. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Social activism becomes a thing for brands, thanks to the Ice Bucket Challenge. Link
  • Ikea pitches its 2015 catalog as the coolest gadget ever. Link
  • American Apparel ad banned in UK for sexualizing schoolgirls. Link
  • In social advertising, YouTube converts more customers than anyone else. Link
  • Photo app Twitpic shuts down over trademark spat with Twitter. Link
  • Facebook rolls out privacy checkups to all 1.3B users. Link
  • Hyperlapse is doing well so far. Link
  • How Venmo is turning into a hilarious social network. Link

Start-ups:

  • This startup aims to give everyone the shipping power of Amazon. Link
  • Yahoo buys photo ad network Luminate, shuts it down. Link
  • Food start up adds tech talent as Silicon Valley shakes up the food business. Link
  • Diageo looks to pour new tech into liquor with venture unit. Link
  • Uber strikes deal to build new headquarters in large expansion. Link
  • ASOS founder funds London expansion of New York-style blow dry bars. Link

International:

[APAC]

  • Fans form lines in Tokyo for expected iPhone launch. Link
  • Rakuten to buy eBates. Link
  • Baidu Eye prototype unveiled to rival Google Glass. Link
  • Emerging Asian designers hit New York Fashion Week. Link
  • House of Fraser completes sale to Chinese department store. Link

[AU/NZ]

  • The Iconic joins other fashion pureplays in international fashion merger. Link
  • H&M confirms two Sydney stores. Link

[EU]

  • Online shopping on mobile devices overtakes desktop in UK. Link
  • How Yoox turned the lucury-goods industry onto digital. Link

[A/ME]

  • Africa now has 100M Facebook users, 9% of the total population. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Apple courts fashionistas as smartwatch expectations mount. Link
  • Motorola’s Moto 360 smartwatch arrives just days before Apple’s expected smartwatch announcement. Link
  • Apple’s big event on September 9th. Here’s what to expect. Link
  • Millennials are the largest group of smartphone owners and adoption is still growing. Link
  • Inside look at the Starbucks app, the most successful mobile payments system in the US. Link
  • Apple adds another high-profile hire with industrial designer Marc Newson. Link
  • The Galaxy Note Edge is Samsung’s new phablet with a new kind of curved display. Link
  • How beacons are changing the shopping experience. Link
  • Apple teaming up with Visa, MasterCard on iPhone wallet. Link
  • Rue La La anticipates bigger-than-ever mobile surge during upcoming holiday season. Link
  • Microsoft woos cost-conscious with new smartphones. Link
  • Why Apple’s iBeacon hasn’t taken off – yet. Link
  • Designers debut wearables at New York Fashion Week. Link

Other:

  • Following purge of tobacco products, CVS renames itself to CVS Health. Link
  • Starbucks announces two new store designs. Link
  • Millennials are saying no to credit cards. Link
  • Two Googlers take top White House tech jobs. Link

Weekly Industry Round Up: 9.2.2014

Top industry news from last week.  All sources can be found in the hyperlink after the headline:

Retailer News:

  • Nordstrom introduces seamless Instagram shopping experience. Link
  • Rumors that eBay is set to buy ASOS. Link
  • Abercrombie to strip logo from clothing. Link
  • Refinery29 teams up with Simon Malls. Link
  • Evernote launches office gear on market ecommerce portal. Link
  • More and more, fashion designers are selling direct to customers. Link
  • Intel poised to launch luxury smart bracelet at Barneys. Link
  • Report card on back to school: the season’s trends and what they mean for retailers. Link
  • Newegg unleashes its own fleet of delivery vehicles for same day delivery in LA. Link
  • How REI blazes a digital trail. Link
  • Google is working on drone deliveries too. Link
  • Zara withdraws t-shirts after accusations online of anti-Semitism. Link
  • JustFab Inc., which includes ShoeDazzle and FabKids, is valued at $1B following $85M investment. Link
  • Zalando blends data with fashion. Link
  • Claire’s reveals new plan to right sluggish sales. Link
  • Macy’s new Bronx store: localization in action. Link
  • Apple sends invites for September 9th.Link
  • Teens favor tech over clothes. Link
  • Stuart Vevers’ first Coach collection hits Net-a-Porter. Link
  • Are things looking up for Target? Link
  • Uniqlo to open two Boston area stores. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Tweet this hashtag in NYC and Reebok could run a pair of sneakers over to you. Link
  • Facebook introduces bandwidth targeting to match mobile ads to your network quality. Link
  • Introducing Hyperlapse, Instagram’s new time-lapse video app. Link
  • 12 marketers already experimenting with Hyperlapse. Link
  • Gap runs first social campaign for kids’ accounts. Link
  • Pinterest tests news tab on mobile. Link
  • Facebook boosts event visibility with new ad format. Link
  • Nordstrom wants you to shop on Instagram. Link
  • Vice Media sells a stake to A&E Network at $2.5B valuation. Link
  • What’s next for Twitter marketing real world innovation? Link
  • Twitter redesigns signup process to entice new users. Link
  • SnapChat said to have more than 100 million monthly active users. Link
  • Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett to start in H&M holiday campaign. Link

Start-ups:

  • Amazon buys Twitch, bets on content in a hub for gamers. Link
  • Mallzee makes move to become the go-to mobile shopping destination for clothes. Link
  • Honest Co., Jessica Alba’s ecommerce startup, raises $70M. Link
  • How a clothing company successfully turned salvaged trash into fashion. Link
  • Menswear brand will deliver fresh white shirt in less than 90 minutes. Link
  • 3 startups vying to become the “Uber for Beauty.” Link

International:

[APAC]

  • LuLuLemon’s Asia push. Link
  • WalMart looks online for Chinese growth. Link
  • Chinese are traveling more but shopping less. Link
  • Wanda, Tencent and Baidu take on Alibaba with $814M ecommerce deal. Link
  • Hermes first-half profit rises on Asia sales. Link
  • Apple’s opportunity in India. Link
  • Google to open new startup center in Seoul. Link
  • Why social ecommerce is a game changer for niche brands in China. Link 

[AU/NZ]

  • Williams-Sonoma arrives in Sydney. Link
  • Australian retailers ramp up. Link
  • Inside Google’s secret drone-delivery program in Australia. Link
  • TopShop partners with Uber to offer free rides to its AU flagship. Link

[EU]

  • Marks & Spencer hopes for halo effect with unifying brand campaign. Link
  • Online beauty brand BirchBox pops up in London. Link

[CA]

  • LuLuLemon founder’s wife and son open luxury t-shirt store Kit and Ace. Link

[LATAM]

  • Columbia open and ready for business. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Zalando testing mobile clothing recognition app. Link
  • Apple rumored partnership with American Express, Visa and MasterCard for mobile payments. Link
  • NFC and wallet likely in next iPhone. Link
  • Tablet growth expected to be flat in North America and Europe this year. Link
  • Kenzo enhances Printemps pop-up with interactive mobile app. Link
  • Quirky Miu Miu mobile app makes mark at Venice Film Festival. Link
  • Pandora’s Google Glass app puts music controls on user’s face. Link
  • Another season, another app. Link
  • Macy’s offers digital wallet. Link
  • Full-screen ads are coming to the iPhone. Link
  • Rebecca Minkoff introducing wearable tech. Link
  • Storytelling app Steller becomes more of a social network. Link
  • Burger King ups ante on promoting apps with smartphone offer. Link
  • Ritz Carlton strive to improve customer stays with app upgrade. Link

Other:

  • Forbes’ 25 most innovative companies, including Hermes, Amazon, and Chipotle. Link
  • Report finds ecommerce draws hedge funds. Link
  • 22% of millennials feel they are under extreme financial stress. Link
  • The world’s most creative people in business. Link
  • How does internationalization work for online retailers? Link

 

Tory Burch x FitBit

This news couldn’t be more timely for my first “real” post on the new blog. Tory Burch’s new jewelry line for FitBit has hit the press. Talk about the intersection between fashion and tech, right? I need to get this bracelet ASAP.

Tory Burch x Fit Bit

Image from The Verge

Checkout some of today’s coverage from around the web:

Hide your Fitbit in this new Tory Burch jewelry (The Verge)

Tory Burch, Fitbit Team for Accessories Line (Women’s Wear Daily)

Here Are The First Products From Fitbit’s Partnership With Tory Burch (TechCrunch)