“Poised to be one of the runaway fashion trends of the back-to-school season, the Levi’s iPod-enabled jeans due to hit stores next month are expensive trailblazers in the world of wearable technology,” Tom Rose reports for The Boston Herald.
“Sporting a white joystick control masquerading as a watch pocket and a customizable docking cradle tucked away in a side pocket, the RedWire DLX jeans are roomy, comfortable pants sure to delight countless iPod owners willing to spend $250 on pants,” Rose reports.
“The RedWire system has five components: a dock, a connector, the RedWire conductive ribbon, the joystick and earbuds. Interestingly, the RedWire is red for the women’s jeans, however the ribbon for the men’s jeans we tested was blue. The jeans come with six interchangeable docking cradles for the various iPod models. We tested with the 4th generation iPod, the iPod video (5G) and the nano and found the docks to be perfect fits,” Rose reports. “A connector snaps into the cradle, allowing for the transfer of data from the iPod’s 30-pin connection to the RedWire ribbon. The ribbon threads through a hole in the back of the iPod side pocket up to the joystick.”
“The square headphone compartment has a clip that fits into a slot in the jeans above the joystick. The unit features retractable earbuds and a retractable audio jack. Two buttons on the side of the compartment whip the wires back into storage,” Rose reports.
“In order to wash the jeans, the RedWire system — and the iPod — must be removed. Taking the system out is not a problem. The joystick patch easily unsnaps and once the ribbon is unhooked from its connection to the docking cradle, the ribbon can be gently pulled up through the pocket system,” Rose reports. “Getting the ribbon back in place is another story. There’s an inch-long enclosed path that it is supposed to thread through in its behind-the-scenes route from the watch pocket to the iPod storage pocket. If you’ve ever tried to put a drawstring back into a pair of sweatpants — that task is easier than getting the ribbon through the short, narrow passage.”
Full article here.
Sigh. Not bad for a first run, we guess, but we can only hope and pray that iPod-enabled jeans are someday perfected.
Levi Strauss debuts iPod-compatible jeans – January 10, 2006