FashTech Digest #5 | Google Glasses, Ara, IoT, wearables to get mainstream, ClosetSpace, Nasty Gal CEO resigns…

For the first FashTech Digest of 2015, I decided to bring a few changes: I’ll add images to illustrate each article, so that you can get the big picture of what it is about, in addition to the little explaination. So that even if you don’t click to read the full article, you’ll get the most important information about it. So to start this year, I’ve selected some of the most trending news of the past two weeks.


Google to Stop Consumer Sales of Glass to Redesign Device – The New York Times

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Google will stop selling its Internet-connected eyewear to consumers until the company can develop a more polished and affordable version that’s less likely to be viewed as a freakish device. In a Thursday blog post, Google likened the Explorer edition of Glass to an infant learning how to walk. “Well, we still have some work to do, but now we’re ready to put on our big kid shoes and learn how to run,” Google said.


Google Unveils its Latest Project Ara Modular Smartphone Prototype – Hypebeast

First unveiled back in 2013, Google‘s Project Ara modular smartphone has largely remained under wraps until now; it was revealed today by the tech giant at its Project Ara Module Developers Conference that it would soon be launching a “pilot” for the design — exclusively in Puerto Rico. Stay tuned for more developments as Google’s ATAP group has yet another Project Ara event planned for Asia on January 21 and, in the meantime, check out our best look yet at the modular smartphone above.


 The Internet of Things is already a $2 billion business for Intel – The Verge

There was no escaping the Internet of Things at CES 2015, it was the omnipresent theme of the expo, but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s a far-off future concept. Intel’s latest earnings report demonstrates that the IoT age is already upon us, accounting for $2.1 billion in revenue in 2014. That’s 10 times as much as Intel generated from its Mobile and Communications division, which, in spite of its importance to the company, actually shrank in revenue over the course of the year.


CES Diary: Wearables may be headed mainstream, but many still aren’t ready for prime time – Venture Beast

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The quantified self movement has come a long way over the past couple years, and many in the industry believe that health and fitness wearables will be everywhere — from Walgreens to Bloomingdale’s — in 2015. Many of these will have been first trotted out at this year’s CES. But companies selling wearables still have a problem. The percentage of buyers who abandon the devices is still very high. One study says that a third of these devices end up in the junk drawer within six months of purchase. It may take a device that is heavy on fashion and tech functionality to truly move wearables to the next level. This might end up being a device like the Apple Watch, an arguably fashionable device with a lot of technology baked inside. Apple chose to bring smart wearable technology to the market wrapped in the wristwatch paradigm we’re all familiar with.


 Britain’s Fashion Brands Target Tech-Savvy Men to Lift Sales – Business of Fashion

Models present creations from the Topman Design Autumn/Winter 2015 collection during "London Collections: Men" in London

Britain’s leading fashion brands are hoping to give menswear sales a lift by targeting younger, digitally savvy male shoppers with live streaming and social media to promote the twice-yearly mens fashion week that began on Friday. London is looking to establish itself as the leading menswear fashion capital over Paris, New York and Milan by dedicating four days to showcasing the latest trends – and designers and retailers are hoping to turn the catwalk buzz into cash. “Over the past few seasons everything had been geared towards the international customer but I feel it is now time to reinvigorate our local consumer” said Skey Head of Menswear at luxury department store Harvey Nichols.


 Cuff Raises $5 Million Series A And Partners With Richline To Bring Smart Jewelry To The Mainstream – TechCrunch

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Fashion-savvy wearable jewelry startup Cuff announced a new partnership with one of the largest jewelry manufacturers in the U.S. today. Cuff is teaming up with Richline to create necklaces, bracelets, earrings and other fine jewelry items for everyone from Tiffany’s and QVC to Macy’s.


Nasty Gal Founder Hands Over CEO Role at Cutting-Edge Online Fashion Retailer – Recode

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Sophia Amoruso will always be the #GirlBoss. But she’s giving up the official boss title at Nasty Gal. Founder of the Los Angeles-based online fashion retailer and author of a bestselling advice book titled “#GirlBoss” is stepping down as CEO of the company that she nurtured from a side project on eBay nine years ago into an e-commerce powerhouse, she told her staff today.


ClosetSpace Brings Fashion Inspiration And Recommendations To Your Smartphone – TechCrunch

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A new application called ClosetSpace from fashion analytics company Stylitics wants to put a digital closet in your pocket, while also feeding you daily inspirations, outfit suggestions, and more, as well as offering access to a personal stylist for just $25.00. The app, targeting mainly at women, is meant to serve as your centralized fashion hub that helps you with everything related to managing your personal style and finding new things to wear.


Why Galliano’s Margiela return mattered – Dazed Digital

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In a column for Dazed Digital, Susie Bubble explains “at a time when the fashion system doesn’t allow for dreamers, the designer’s first show for the house was more than just a second chance”. After an absence from the system, Galliano has once again immersed himself into this strenuous cycle of seasons, taking on multiple lines and collections at Margiela. And yet his current work environment couldn’t be more different to his previous employer. Judging by Galliano’s recent appearance and demeanour, he’s keeping clear of theatrics, ditching his elaborate show costumes of days past to appear at the end of yesterday’s Artisanal runway in a white labcoat – the maison’s great equaliser, worn by all of its staff. With its associations of whitewashed surfaces and pure canvas, Margiela is a rare environment which provides the perfect figurative clean slate for the designer, somewhere his creativity can be nurtured and reignited, away from too many prying eyes. For Galliano, the tempest is over: it’s time to dream again.


Kevin McKenzie on Reinventing the Shopping Mall – Business of Fashion

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Kevin McKenzie, global chief digital officer at Westfield Group, talks to BoF about the mall of the future, Westfield’s World Trade Center and the role of the physical store in a digital world.

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