When we think of users and innovators in technology, we often think of very data driven or hardware-based industries: the military, hospitals, power plants, and IT companies. But perhaps an underappreciated area in which tech advances are shining is in the Fashion Industry.
In a more global and diverse society, with more people empowered to make independent choices about their identities, it is harder and harder for large fashion giants and corporate juggernauts to dictate fashion choices onto society, particularly for men. With companies like Goldman Sachs finally relenting to internal pressure and relaxing their dress code to keep up with the Silicon Valley guys who have been rocking the t-shirts and jeans for years, how can fashion companies innovate in a relevant way?
Technology is very helpful at meeting changing needs. From creating new fabrics to allow even men in suits to “run, jump, and climb a fence”, to using different material sources and distribution methods such as recycled “plastic bottles and coffee”, companies are being forced to change in order to meet the wide variety of market needs from a now empowered consumer, not just in a wider variety of aesthetics but in sourcing, sustainability, and ethics.
Fashion Icon Andrew Rosen put it best: “It’s Survival of the Fittest.” Consumers can now easily shop for clothing around the world due to the rise of online shopping, and so international competition has never been more intense. And like any competitive environment or industry, the same rule applies: Adapt or Die.