Every now and then a technology can completely change how products are made used and look, this fundamental change is also known as a “paradigm shift”. Digital Technology has helped create paradigm shifts in almost every corner of modern human life (while the changes that Digital Technology has brought to wildlife have maybe been less inspiring).
But if Digital Technology has profoundly changed music, video, retail and banking, how will it change Footwear? Also consider how 5G could boost the use and reach of Digital Technology.
How many people will it take to design, develop, produce and distribute 10,000-100,000 pairs of just one Digital Footwear style, compared to a Physical design? Consider that with purely digital footwear designed for VR, you also won’t need to to fit and wear test physical samples, although it may need to be wear tested in a digital environment for other types of functionality for example how it’s aesthetic will hold up in a dynamic digital environment. In 2013, I wrote an interesting post about Motion Sculpture if you would like to get a better idea of what I mean. But I digress…
Think how disruptive digital technology has been from #C-#V, to digital images and video, often providing impressive results at the press of a button and imagine how much more it will develop and how much time and money is currently being invested in it.
And along with Digital Footwear, also what I call “Shell Footwear” (usually injection molded, or 3D printed Mono Material), seems also to be perfectly aligned to follow in the footsteps of all the other disruptive digital products that are commonly available today.
Could one day a designer by himself create a footwear design that can be easily 3D Printed and sold to thousands of social media followers? Will digital product platforms become the new fashion brands, becoming giants like Sound Cloud and YouTube? And what will this mean for retail, factory work and industry as we know it?
What started as digital designs created for internal design presentations are quickly developing into commercial AR/VR products and also 3D Printed Designs for commercial use.