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Google, H&M partner up to create custom dresses based on your data
After using an app for a week, you’ll get a custom dress design you can purchase.
Every day, we generate 2.5 quintillion bytes of data. Thanks to phones that are on our person at all times, you can track your steps, log the locations you visit most, and keep tabs on your favorite stores and websites. Google’s Awareness API, introduced at its I/O conference last year, aims to use some of that data so developers can make apps more helpful and more context-aware. Rather than just making a smarter app, however, H&M is using that API for a more unique application: to design custom dresses under its Ivyrevel label.
If you’ve ever wanted a one-of-a-kind, couture dress, but lacked the funds or the sewing prowess, this is your chance. H&M will be shipping an Android app in the near future that will track a variety of metrics in your life for one week, and then design a dress (the “Data_Dress”) you can order that’s perfectly suited to your lifestyle. According to Google’s blog post, the app will look for things such as: “Where do you regularly eat out for dinner or hang out with friends? Are they more casual or formal meetups? What’s the usual weather when you’re outside?”
Details such as a belt and cuffs are dictated by your personal data, while the material it’s made of is determined by your location and activity levels. In one example, the app designed a dress made out of black velvet because the wearer (Ivyrevel co-founder Kenza Zouiten) was in Stockholm, Sweden, where it was -2 degrees, and it added diamond details because she was often dancing. Among those diamond details, it included the GPS route of an early morning run, along with other map-style routes to restaurants and meeting spots.
“We believe that fashion can really amplify your personality and boost your confidence. But finding something unique to wear can be difficult,” the Ivyrevel site explains as the reason for the project.
After downloading the app, you’ll be asked to specify whether you’d prefer a dress for a party, a gala, or for business. Then, following a week of use, you’ll be able to tweak the design that the app comes up with (you can rotate or scale the imagery to your specifications). The resulting dress will have a starting price tag of $99.
From the examples thus far, the GPS designs printed on the dress are disappointingly literal unless the week you decide to track is particularly significant in your life—say, you use the app to document your vacation to Spain, or commemorate your first week at a new job.
If you’re interested, you can register on the Ivyrevel website for a chance to win a Data_Dress of your own.
Christina Bonnington is a tech reporter who specializes in consumer gadgets, apps, and the trends shaping the technology industry. Her work has also appeared in Gizmodo, Wired, Refinery29, Slate, Bicycling, and Outside Magazine. She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has a background in electrical engineering.