Recently at South by Southwest, Levi and Google showed off their collaborative wearable technology, Project Jacquard. They’ve eliminated the bulky, awkward, wearable tech that we’ve become used to seeing and replaced it with a jacket that looks and acts like a jacket while having washable conductive fibers running through it. With the jacket comes with a detachable non-washable cufflink that makes the fibers come to life.
“Jacquard yarn structures combine thin, metallic alloys with natural and synthetic yarns like cotton, polyester, or silk, making the yarn strong enough to be woven on any industrial loom. Jacquard yarns are indistinguishable from the traditional yarns that are used to produce fabrics today.”
Project Jacquard is developed in Googles division in the Advance Tech and Projects Group. The jacket, cut in Levi’s Trucker Jacket style, uses conductive yarns that are able to make gestures translate into actions woven into precise places. Sensor grids and interactive surfaces are also an option with how the technology is woven into the fabric.
The jacket currently allows wearers to get map updates and navigation without a screen, track destinations of interest as you pass by, and answer calls. The features are limited at the moment but more apps are in route to come in the future. Apps such as the ones you download on your phone may one day be downloadable to your tech jacket.
The jacket is currently listed at $350 retail and you can find more video information on this new tech online at https://atap.google.com/jacquard/