It’s been more than two years since Levi’s and Google announced they were working together to incorporate smart-touch fabric into clothing, and a year since they began developing a trucker jacket that uses that technology. But as of today, it’s finally a reality.
The Levi’s Commuter Trucker Jacket with Jacquard by Google just launched at a few select stores around the country. Jacquard, named after a type of loom and the textile it produces, is a conductive fabric that allows clothing to send data and power without wires and is woven directly into the clothing.
The Commuter Trucker Jacket uses a “smart tag” that attaches to the left cuff and connects remotely via Bluetooth to your smartphone. There’s an inside pocket where the phone sits. With a few touch gestures, like swiping in or out or double tapping on the jacket sleeve, you can do things like get directions, change the music you’re listening to, or have texts read aloud. It works with both iPhones and Androids. There’s an inside pocket where the phone sits. With a few touch gestures, like swiping in or out or double tapping on the jacket sleeve, you can do things like get directions, change the music you’re listening to, or have texts read aloud. It works with both iPhones and Androids.
The jacket’s mainly intended for urban cyclists, so they can easily and safely use their smartphone while on the go. Although, we can see guys who may never get on a bicycle also digging the jacket — motorcyclists, skateboarders, and scooter commuters in particular.
Now that we’ve delved into the tech side, let’s get to how it looks. It’s got the classic Levi’s trucker-jacket styling, stretch fabric at the shoulders, and back vents for ventilation. One complaint we’ve heard is that you can only wash it ten times before the smart capabilities begin to falter, but honestly, who washes a raw jean jacket that much anyway?
It sells for $350 and you can pick one up now — but only at Fred Segal in Santa Monica, Kinfolk in Brooklyn, and Concepts in Boston. The jacket will be available online at Levi.com starting Monday, October 2, as well as in select Levi’s stores in Santa Monica, Chicago, New York, and San Francisco.
What may be the most important aspect of the jacket is as a forerunner to what lies ahead for interactive smart clothing. We may not have flying cars (yet) but it looks like our clothes may soon be just another aspect of our digital lives.
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