I don’t own any heated clothing yet, but I have to say that technology is really getting sophisticated with this stuff. Wearable Technologies put together an interesting list of sporty items, but I’m only going to share the ones that are actually on the market since winter is coming. Starting off with Volt Resistance, this smartly named company has an array of clothing including insulated jackets, lightweight shells, gloves, vests, slippers and even socks. Their products use a Zero Layer® patented heating system that integrates stainless fibers woven onto insulated fabric. Rechargeable lithium batteries provide the energy keeping things small and convenient.
EXO² creates niche heated wearables for motorcyclists and outdoor lovers. Their special line of stretch garments called EXOGLOW incorporate three heated panels including one for the kidney area and two for the chest. The photo above comes from an insane moto team that wore the company’s gear on a ride up the volcano Ojos del Salado in Chile. The team swears by the heated gloves and vests that allowed them to survive in 14 deg. temperatures. Something that really sets this UK company apart is their interest in equestrians—they even have therapeutic blankets for horses! I think they should consider a miniature version for my always shivering Italian Greyhound.
Moving in a new direction with power, VentureHeat has created the Escape USB Jacket. That’s right, you can plug in your power bank that you normally keep in your laptop bag. They’ve also got their Evolve USB Hoodie, which is probably the number one hacker wardrobe choice, possibly explaining why it is currently out of stock. Like the jacket, the hoodie has a heated panel on the back, along with a panel covering each side of the chest. It definitely has tech appeal. The company also carries a line of newer Far Infrared Ray (FIR) therapy products designed to heat specific problem areas of the body, like ankle wraps, knee wraps etc.
I bet you were just thinking it’s about time there was a phone app for wearables, and Gyde Supply has created just that for their heated clothing line. Using their Bluetooth Thermogauge™ adapter, you can control multiple pieces of their clothing at a temperature to suit you. So, if you are like me and have icy hands, you can keep your gloves at a warmer temperature than your jacket. The best part is their app is available on IOS or Android, so there’s no need to do the whole phone argument. FYI their clothing markets to multiple sports, and definitely has a Euro design with a closer cut. The behind-the-scenes magic includes Microwire™technology for heat and Calor, a synthetic fiber that mimics down.
Another heated wearable with app appeal is Digitsole. These bluetooth connected insoles will not only warm your feet, but they will also track your steps and let you know about calories burned. IOS and Android friendly, they appear to be as beefy as sport insoles found in nicer sneakers, but they certainly pack the electronics compactly. This product got its start on Kickstarter and is now available for sale on their site. So, now you can jog even when the temperature is freezing.
As you can tell, I’m definitely intrigued by wearables that are controllable through bluetooth. Did you know you can DIY your own interesting possibilities with connected clothing using our FLORA Bluefruit LE? Just stitch it to a FLORA microcontroller and you can do some interesting things, like change the color of your NeoPixels with a few taps of your phone screen. You can also connect sensor information or GPS from your phone or even use an 8 button game key pad. What would you like your clothing to do?
Every Wednesday is Wearable Wednesday here at Adafruit! We’re bringing you the blinkiest, most fashionable, innovative, and useful wearables from around the web and in our own original projects featuring our wearable Arduino-compatible platform, FLORA. Be sure to post up your wearables projects in the forums or send us a link and you might be featured here on Wearable Wednesday!
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