UK retail/fashion store Debenhams has revealed a fairly unique product being added to their shelves this winter that is appears to overlap the two genres, with a jacket that contains a built-in system that potentially gives a new meaning to ‘surround sound’.
The jacket, which looks fairly regular by appearance, contains inside a connected pair of headphones, ‘external’ speakers, and a control panel inside, complete with the benefits of being machine washable and ‘fully wearable’.
The garment is a design of Kowloon (Hong Kong)-based company C.VOX (Communique Vox), with the designers claiming it to be a ‘top-of-the-range sound system’ that can also serve as a hands-free mobile phone base with a built-in microphone that along with playing music/audio while literally ‘on the go’, enables a way to ‘stay safer against street crime’, presumably meaning that would-be criminals would go by the mantra of ‘if it’s not shiny, don’t try to steal it’.
The product comes complete with an internal ‘connector point’ that is compatible with all brands of mobile phones and mp3 players, offering a concealed compartment to connect the device, alongside other ‘washable functions. Control for the speakers, earphones (which are connected by running ‘untangled’ through the collar), and mobile features comes through the sleeve-based control system, offering the options to play, pause, and songs, along with answering/hanging up the phone call connections.
C.VOX spokesman Peter Layzell said of the development of the product: “[We wanted to] push the boundaries in functional technology and fashion. We look forward to developing and launching new clothing lines with the latest innovations and trends for the coming seasons.”
Debenhams head of menswear buying Paul Baldwin added of selling the jackets: “[We are] thrilled to be offering such an innovative product to our customers. [It is] a perfect, safety-conscious way to conceal gadgets whilst still being able to freely use them in public; it’s the must-have item for any commuter.”
Having begun sales yesterday (26 November), the product will be sold in Debenhams stores and online at the prices of £65 for an ‘adult male coat’, and £33 for children’s sizes. C.VOX have also claimed that their future product range for those markets will include different types of jacket implementing speaker systems, but how long will it be before thieves catch onto the fact that there are jackets out there simultaneously hooked up to many of the very items they are looking to steal?