Tech goes glam as Apple and Samsung partner with high fashion to promote their devices

Tech goes glam as Apple and Samsung partner with high fashion to promote their devices

Gadgets and fashion are colliding this month as both Apple and Samsung are collaborating with high-end fashion brands to promote their latest devices.

Apple is touting a partnership with fashion brand Burberry that will see its upcoming iPhone 5s used as a camera for a runway show in London days before the device goes on sale.

According to a press release from Apple, Burberry will use the upcoming smartphone’s camera to record “runway and beauty looks, product details, and backstage moments.”

While a partnership between Apple and another brand isn’t out of the ordinary, the fact that the event takes place before the iPhone 5s has even gone on sale does seem unusual. Apple has historically kept its unreleased devices under tight wraps. The runway show is scheduled for September 16, while the iPhone 5s launch occurs on the 20th.

Burberry’s Chief Creative Officer commented on the partnership in a statement:

This collaboration celebrates our relationship and shared foundation in design and craftsmanship. We have a mutual passion for creating beautiful products and unlocking emotive experiences through technology, which has made it intensely exciting to explore the capabilities of iPhone 5s. We’re inspired by what this could mean for the future as we continue to explore the merging of physical and digital experiences.

At its iPhone launch event earlier this week, Apple spent extra time highlighting the advances made to the camera on the iPhone 5s. The handset’s 8-megapixel rear camera features a five-element lens, an f/2.2 maximum aperture and a 15 percent larger active sensor area with larger pixels. The iPhone 5s also includes a “True Tone” flash with two LEDs. Photos can now be captured in 10 frames per second bursts, and the video feature can now record 120 frames per second slow-motion videos.

Samsung took a more participatory approach to the fashion industry when it showed up at New York Fashion Week this week with its Galaxy Gear smartwatch and Galaxy Note 3 phablet. Fallon jewelry designer Dana Lorenz sent models down the runway with studded charms for the Galaxy Gear and fringe leather cases for the Galaxy Note 3.


“The FALLON girl is very much a digital girl,” Lorenz said of the collaboration. “With the accessories I’ve created for the GALAXY Note 3 and GALAXY Gear, I want to give them high fashion along with this new mobile experience.”

At last year’s Fashion Week, Google partnered with fashion icon Diane von Fursternberg to use Google Glass units to film her runway show.

As the market for wearable devices ramps up, this kind of cooperation between tech brands and fashion designers will pick up. Samsung itself highlighted during its recent Galaxy Gear launch that it expects the device to become a “new fashion item around the world.”

Opinions about the Galaxy Gear’s aesthetics may be mixed, but Samsung is at least on the right track. Now that we’re starting to wear our gadgets, they are inextricably part of our fashion and style. With brands like Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors targeting the tech accessory market, the stylization of our gadgets is already well underway.

As gadget brands turn to the runway to figure out how to make it work, the days of ugly tech are (hopefully) coming to a close.

Image credits: Samsung, Getty Images

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