Technology, sustainability, and apparel are all intertwined when it comes to forward thinking about fashion and smart clothing. The gadgets that we use have come a long way since even a mere decade ago, and the clothing that people wear follows closely behind as functionality meets technology.
“Smart clothing” is a rather novel term, coined to describe garments that serve a purpose by design, while offering technological capabilities and solutions.
The Unique Solution: UNI-SMART
UNI-SMART, powered by The Unique Group and Arylla is an invisible ink printed onto a brand’s existing labels that could be photographed through mobile devices. Photographing the label will take the user to a website or file – a completely online experience rather than conventional print. This online experience is a branding solution that will eliminate the guessing game of counterfeit items, which we’ll talk about in detail later on. Photographing the labels via phone automatically authenticates the item, and the end user can be confident that the product they are buying is original and genuine. This is essentially a useful marketing tool for brands to promote their products.
Interactive and Immersive
The invisible ink is completely undetectable by sight, and not tactile through touch – discreet to the eye. Producing such labels isn’t as complicated as it may sound – We use low cost, small-footprint, nanotechnology inkjet stations to print the labels. This technology can be applied to hang tags, woven labels, printed labels and price tickets. The ink could be scanned with any device and will open the encrypted information without any additional software or apps; seamless and instant. Not only is this a novel way to experience a brand, it is a counterfeit solution as well. Counterfeiting and manufacturing fake products is common in the fashion industry when many knock-off brands try to permeate the market at attractive prices. Smart clothing offers a remedy for replicating fake products. Purchasing counterfeit items is usually done unintentionally. According to some reports analysis three quarters of customers who bought a fake product online did it unintentionally. The counterfeiting business is lucrative – while some consumers are actively pursuing high street items at a discounted price while sacrificing the quality, others unknowingly fall into the trap.
From photographing to verifying, the process of “looking up” clothing tags has never been so easy. Simply by taking a photo of the brand’s label, the user is instantly connected to a new brand experience with activation rates of up to 15%. Experiences are personalized based on consumer location and purchase history. Customers will also be able to have a direct line of communication to style advisors and customer support.
An integrated experience that is simple and quick to get all the necessary info within reach, and within a click.
Buyers will no longer need to go anywhere to get their luxury items appraised and authenticated for a possible counterfeiting; smart clothing tags and labels now hold the power to show them right then and there. Brands who want to participate in the circular economy now have a clear way of communicating critical product information with resale and recycling partners. Of course, with this new technology comes a new data feed that can shed light on what products generate the highest engagement. Since the ink does not actively emit any tracking signals, all of these things can be done while respecting the customer’s privacy.