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Ralph Lauren announces a sensor-equipped smart polo

Ralph Lauren has now announced a smart shirt designed with athletes in mind, which is plans to commercially release in the first half of next year.
August 25, 2014

A little over a year ago we wrote an article about OMsignal, a startup aimed at bringing us ‘smart clothes’ that would be equipped with sensors that could monitor heart rate and so much more. At the time we made it clear that, while there was potential, the tech was still a far ways off from going commercial. Now it seems that day is finally coming a bit closer as Ralph Lauren has formally taken the veil off a new smart polo shirt — featuring technology developed by OMsignal.

The smart polo will be making its debut at the U.S. Open, where ball boys who retrieve missed shots will be wearing the shirt, as will the Intercollegiate Tennis Associations’ number one singles player, Marcos Giron, during his practices. As for what the smart shirt does exactly? Aimed at athletes, the new polo will be able to read things like respiration, stress level, heartbeat and energy output. All of this data will then be relayed to the wearer via a smartphone.

[quote qtext=”Our goal is to create and reflect the ultimate lifestyle, and we believe that a healthy and active life is an essential part of that. Ralph Lauren is excited to help lead the industry in wearable technology in this ever-evolving, modern world.” qperson=” David Lauren” qsource=”Ralph Lauren’s senior VP of advertising, marketing, and PR” qposition=”center”]

The new polo shirt will commercially debut in the first half of 2015 for anyone interested in picking one up, though no pricing or exact release details have been announced just yet. Considering the shirt has Ralph Lauren’s logo on it, however, we assume it won’t be cheap. Of course, as we mentioned last year, OMisignal isn’t the only company working on such technology. In fact, Intel showed off a similar shirt that could measure heart rate and take an EKG, which was created in partnership with AIQ.

What do you think, like the idea of a smart shirt, especially for athletic use? Is this just the beginning of a future filled with ‘smart clothes’?