It’s no secret to frequent readers that we’re not a big fan of “gimmick” wearables. Yet IEEE Spectrum’s report on a SXSW session on tech-enabled intimate attire makes us sorry we weren’t there.
Durex, best known as a condom manufacturer, and Wearable Experiments’ Billie Whitehouse were showing off some interactive undergardments designed by the fine folks at the marketing company Havas Worldwide. The general idea is that geographically remote participants can interact with their partner’s privates through a smartphone interface.
The engineering challenges were daunting:
“There was some great work in electroactive polymers at the University of Auckland,” Morgan explained. “We contacted them and they said, ‘where are you going to stick this stuff?’ And we said, ‘down in your pants.’ They said, ‘Oh, that’s probably not a good idea,’” noting that the polymers operate at 4500 volts.
Whitehouse also showed off her Navigate jacket, which taps the wearer on the shoulder to guide them in their travels. Asked what’s next, she replied:
“The future of this jacket, for me, is inductive-charging coathangers.”
Actually, we could totally see that working as a business…