After three years of promises, Levi’s Commuter Trucker jacket embedded with Google’s ‘Jacquard’ technology aims to bring practical purpose to wearables seems to be slouching towards production.
The promise of Project Jacquard is that “everyday objects such as clothes and furniture can be transformed into interactive surfaces.” Given the huge range of smart and conducting textiles available we were expecting big things.
What may actually be delivered is a $350 denim jacket that “which allows a wearer to control a mobile device through a patch of fabric on the left-hand sleeve cuff.” A garment almost as appealing as Samsung’s much derided smart suit.
Where this fits in between the smart watch on your wrist on the phone in your pocket isn’t made clear, but it looks like an idea whose time hasn’t come. It’s hard not to laugh out loud at comments like “I want to be able to sit down to dinner and not have to look at my phone” while your jacket sleeve vibrates and flashes lights to tell you to look at your phone.
But the saddest thing about this jacket is the lack of attention to the only market that currently matters for wearables – fitness.