Updated 12:16 p.m. EDT, Monday, September 10
Google’s experimental hi-tech glasses, “Google Glass,” made an unexpected appearance at New York Fashion Week on Sunday when models for designer Diane Von Furstenberg (DVF)’s Spring 2013 collection took to the runway wearing the computerized specs, only to be joined later by the bespectacled designer herself and Google co-founder and Glass project leader Sergey Brin.
The unlikely collaboration, which was first reported on Saturday by Women’s Wear Daily and teased by DVF ahead of time, also involved DVF models and stylists snapping photos of their views of the backstage and the catwalk, and filming video using the glasses’ tiny built-in camera.
Many of the point-of-view photos taken using Google Glass devices were posted to DVF’s Google Plus page on Sunday. Here a few selected shots:
DVF also announced that this footage will be made into a film that will premiere on the label’s Google Plus page on Thursday, September 13.
In the mean time, DVF posted a video of its entire Spring 2013 runway show on its website and models wearing Google Glass make their appearance beginning at about minute eight.
As for the big question: Why would the two companies team up? DVF and Google’s Sergey Brin offered the following responses to Marketing Land:
“I am so excited to introduce Glass to the fashion world and use this revolutionary technology to give everyone a unique perspective into fashion.” - Diane von Furstenberg
“Beauty, style and comfort are as important to Glass as the latest technology. We are delighted to bring Glass to the runway together with DVF.” - Sergey Brin, Google co-founder.
Sources close to the collaboration, speaking on condition of anonymity, further told TPM that Google and DVF believe that both brands share commitments to some of the same design values, namely boldness, comfort and style, and as such, a partnership made sense in this instance.
Google has said that it will ship the first versions of Google Glass, called “Explorer Edition,” in “early 2013,” at a cost of $1,500 per pair, to a select few interested software developers and other attendees of its June developer conference.
The glasses, which Google first acknowledged in April in a concept video, are designed to provide the computing capabilities and Internet connectivity of an Android smartphone in a much smaller, lighter and mostly hands-free wearable form.
Brin and other engineers on the project have alluded to the fact that the project has moved away from what began as an “augmented reality” concept — a practice which refers to layering relevant digital information on real world views — to one more focused on allowing people to perform many digital tasks, such as snapping photos or pulling up directions, more unobtrusively than pulling a smartphone out of their pockets.
Updated in copy to add further information from sources close to the collaboration.