The fashion industry is always moving forward, always shifting and always tapping into new and upcoming trends. But it seems that it is about to undergo a change far more fundamental; one that will open up new possibilities for designers and clients alike. As new technologies such as 3D printing and augmented reality are developed, seeing their applications in fashion is coming sooner than we thought. What are the biggest trends to look forward to?
Voice Recognition Tech
Just a few decades ago, fashion aficionados used to drop by their tailor to get their clothes especially cut out for them. From there we moved on to mass retail production and then to online shopping. The trend of the future seems to be focused on making things even easier for us; voice recognition technology can be harnessed by fashion apps and dedicated sites to allow visitors to search using speech instead of tapping and clicking. It is also estimated that 50% of all internet searches by 2020 will move away from text and use voice and image search instead. Of course, when apps use sensitive biometric data like our voice patterns, fashion app developers need to pay particular attention to the cyber security of their products. Installing tools like a Web Application Firewall that protects user accounts and other web applications from some of the most dangerous hacker attacks like SQL injection can help put fashionistas at ease about the use of voice biometrics.
Adidas announced the launch of the brand’s Futurecraft 4D sneakers last year. What was so special about it? Its sole was crafted using a 3D printer as part of the firm’s efforts to improve the responsiveness of its mass production lines to changing demand. Adidas is big on customisation and by bringing 3D tech into their design and creative process, they hope to be able to make small production lines like limited edition sneakers much more affordable for both the company and the customers. Adidas crafted 5,000 pairs in the first round and hopes to get a further 100,000 pairs out this year. Other shoe brands like New Balance, Nike and Under Armour are also following suit and experimenting with the technology, as 3D printing is estimated to reach $26 billion in sales by 2020.
More and more fashion retailers are turning to cutting-edge tech in order to keep on top of competition – according to research, 75% of retailers intend to explore AI application in 2018 and 2019. Gucci has already launched its Spring 2018 campaign under the title ‘The Gucci Hallucination’, which includes scannable ads where clients can explore the campaign in AR, as well as artwork that is accessible through VR devices when shopping at Gucci stores worldwide. Meanwhile, millennial favourite Zara has installed AR displays in 120 of its retail locations all over the globe since April. Customers can use their smartphones to point at a selected look and buy it in one click.