Forget pink tech. Editor, Jenny Williams, looks at how fashion is infultrating the technology industry – and there isn’t a shade of pink in sight
Let’s face it; technology isn’t a sexy industry. To remedy that, technology companies have been throwing pink at all of their products. Legally Blonde’s Ellie has been blamed for starting a pink tech renaissance after sporting a pink Gateway 450 Notebook in the film. But whether or not Hollywood is to blame, pink tech is still hitting the shops. Earlier this month, Sony launched another pink product: the Sony VAIO notebook (as reviewed by Pocket Link) is more pink than pink.
But there’s only so much splashing pink around can do. And some lady geeks are getting their tech-knickers in a twist. LadyGeek founder, Belinda Parmar recently asked, “why do technology companies think that pinking up and dumbing down their marketing is the way to get professional, well educated women to part with their cash?
“PC World is telling me my world is pink (it has not been pink since I was seven)”, she continues, “And I need a new laptop to match my outfit (it would never even occur to me to match my outfit with my technology). Samsung is asking me, “What Colour is my Life?” (hello?) and Dell is telling me that technology is like candy (do me a favour).”
But not all women are offended; blogger, Theodora, says, “I have to say I don’t completely agree with women who get all annoyed with girlie looking computers and gadgets and see it as degrading. If I’m buying a laptop, I expect it to boot up fairly quickly, have a wireless card, decent screen size, good sound, good picture quality, enough memory for my photos and the occasional cheeky Glee or Big Bang Theory episode and powerful enough processor and RAM so I don’t want to shoot my brains out whilst waiting for Photoshop to load. Now if I can get all this and a nice looking albeit NOT PINK laptop with a stylish bag that can double up as a hand bag, well let’s just say the feminist in me won’t be particularly offended.”
But no longer to women have to battle over feminist ideals and pink technology. Pink isn’t women’s only fashionable alternative to grey hunks of metal and Atom chips. Fortunately, there’s been an underground surge of fashion designers and designer technology hitting the scene.
The ‘CREATE’ collection by Jason Wu has been hailed as the “UK’s first fashion camera”. Launched at Graduate Fashion Week this year, the 27-year-old fashion designer, Jason Wu, recently came under the spotlight for designing Michelle Obama’s inauguration ball gown. Now, he’s joined General Imaging to launch a range of ‘fashion cameras’. With a leather body and case, this camera is designed to look as good as it performs.
Nokia’s novero has also launched Bluetooth sets to look more like jewellery. More than £100,000 each, these luxe headsets aim to make technology more beautiful and fashionable. (see picture, left, ‘Stripes’ is molded from contemporary, black silicone and hatched with bright shafts of traditional, brushed gold. It’s like a technology choker).
According to Financial Express, statistics show that there is a surge in the percentage of women using trendy technology like internet, computer, mobile phones, PDAs and other consumer devices. A large demographic, nearly 70% women in the west, use the internet as the primary source of information for family activities, recipes, health, news, and entertainment listings. For a majority of women, internet highly influences their purchasing decisions. A good half of women use it for social networking and to keep in touch with family and friends when away. (Source: The Centre for Women’s Business Research).
Can fashion designers make technology more, um, fashionable? Will gadgets become the new must-have fashion accessory? Tell Witch Tech what you think.