How and why standardization will benefit the e-textile industry: Page 8 of 9

April 14, 2020 // By William G. Wong
e-textile
In e-textiles, developers spend too much time finding out which component works with which. What the industry needs is a collaborative effort in the electronics and textile industries to work toward common standards.

How would you convince the main players in the e-textile industry to join you?

E-textile is on the brink of entering new markets in medical, gaming, and sport if we can provide standard components and reach a price point where we can compete with handheld devices.

Take the Google Jacquard by Levi’s, where an interactive cuff communicates with your smartphone through an app. That way you can access vital apps and functions just by tapping the cuff and hear information and music through your earphones. Right now, Levi’s starting price of 198 U.S. dollars for the classic Trucker Jacket with Google Jacquard technology is more than 100 dollars higher than a traditional Trucker Jacket. For the technology to become more competitive, this price needs to go down.

But an even bigger impending breakthrough is a thin emulating glove, which is basically a textile hand-shaped sensor and accelerometer. It registers movements and translates them into 3D images. The same principle is already being used in the film industry, only with painted dots on an actor’s head, body, and limbs. Such a glove technique renders work with laser setups in studios and labs obsolete. An athlete, actor, or patient now only needs to wear emulating garments. In addition to the film industry, those within the sports, medical and gaming industries can use this technique to enhance user experience, but at much lower costs than required by present-day techniques.


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