Ralph Lauren’s new smart Polo shirts combine fashion and technology

Ralph Lauren's new PoloTech shirt
Image courtesy of RalphLauren.com
High-tech, meet high fashion. With Ralph Lauren’s introduction of its new “smart” PoloTech shirt, high-tech fashion is now synonymous with high-fashion technology. For a cool $295, you can be the proud owner of one of these luxury items, made all the more impressive by their next generation material (or, if you’re a purist, their name brand design). With the silver fibers that have become a mainstay in smart clothing, including in radiation protecting underwear, Ralph Lauren’s PoloTech shirt tells you how to work out, and records information about your exercise routine so that you look as good out of the shirt as you do in it.

The PoloTech, first debuted at the 2014 U.S. Open, was initially worn by ball boys and American tennis player Marcos Giron to test the technology’s effectiveness. It marked the first time a major fashion label had delved into the realm of smart clothing — previously, only accessories had been breached by designers of a similar caliber, like the Tory Burch-designed FitBit. David Lauren, the Ralph Lauren’s executive vice president of global advertising, marketing and corporate communications noted that their latest release appears as “the first major luxury fashion brand to come to market” with such a technologically advanced piece of clothing.

Thanks to the silver fibers and a tiny “black box” sensor that attaches into the shirt close to the wearer’s rib cage, the “second-skin” PoloTech expertly tracks health metrics like steps taken, heart rate, breathing rate and depth, and energy expenditures. This data is then transferred to a Ralph Lauren iOS app — sorry Android users, no fun for you. Still, the PoloTech shirt believes that it and its app set themselves apart by not only aggregating information, but then going a step further and providing the user with advice on how to improve workouts.

While the PoloTech will only be available for men when it launches on August 27, the company is also looking toward a women’s version, and expanding its line of smart wear to include other types of clothing — maybe even a smart suit. Of course, given the price point of the shirt alone, you’ll have to be prepared to shell out some major change for this personalized workout device, but just think of it this way — at $295, it’s still $55 cheaper than the Apple Watch.

Product Review

The all-new Palm wants to be many things, but it’s really just a tiny smartphone

The all-new Palm is here, and it’s tinier than ever. Exclusive to Verizon, it syncs to your primary smartphone and acts as a secondary device -- with features to help you disconnect from technology. But at $350, is it worth the high price…
Smart Home

Simplisafe steps outside the smart home with its Video Doorbell Pro

SimpiSafe is pushing into the smart home market by introducing a new high-tech video doorbell that includes 1080p HD monitoring and a dual-sensor motion trigger that combines a body heat detector and a motion detector.
Music

How to convert and play FLAC music files on your iPhone or iPad

The high-resolution revolution is upon us, and FLAC files are a popular way to store hi-res sound. But what if you’re an iOS user? Check out our article to find out more about FLAC files, and how to use them on Apple devices.
Product Review

The Scuf Vantage PS4 Controller puts a new spin on pay to win

The Scuf Vantage is the best high-performance PlayStation 4 controller you can get with all the customization options a dedicated gamer can ask for, but with such a high price tag, we have a few reservations about its issues.
Product Review

Apple's best product isn't the iPhone, it's the Apple Watch

Apple already ruled the smartwatch market with the Apple Watch Series 3, but the Series 4 elevates it to new levels with more screen, a sleeker design, and even an world-first electrocardiogram app that lets you keep tabs on your ticker.
Outdoors

The best snowshoes you can buy right now (updated for 2018)

Snowshoeing is a great way to stay fit and active during the winter months, but finding the right pair can be a challenge. Here are our picks of the five best snowshoes available today to keep you moving on the trail this winter.
Product Review

Garmin's Fenix 5X Plus is built for fitness freaks who fawn over every feature

With onboard music, full-color topographic maps, and new sport metrics, the Garmin Fenix 5X Plus sets a high bar for GPS smartwatches. Find out how it can help boost your performance in our Fenix 5X Plus review.
Emerging Tech

Bose’s latest hearing aid has its own app

The FDA has granted Bose approval to bring a more intuitive hearing aid to market. The app-controlled device is the first of its kind to be granted FDA approval since Congress passed a law allowing the sale of OTC hearing aids.
Wearables

The Fitbit Charge 3 is now available for purchase worldwide

Back in August, Fitbit confirmed its new wearable -- the Fitbit Charge 3. The new fitness tracker features a touchscreen OLED display, smartwatch capabilities, enhanced fitness features and more. Here's everything you need to know about it.
Outdoors

These zip-on bike tires change up your tread to match the terrain

Retyre gives cyclists the ability to change the tread on their bike tires simply by zipping on an overlay designed to provide better grip on trails or in the snow, without replacing the existing tires.
Product Review

Withings Steel HR Sport is a fitness tracker you’ll love wearing

Withings jumps back in the wearables game with the new Steel HR Sport, a hybrid smartwatch that is as much a fitness tracker as it is a timepiece. It's so good that it hasn't left our wrist since we pulled it out of the package.
Emerging Tech

Forget laxatives — this electronic pill will literally shake the crap out of you

Are you suffering from constipation? What you really need is a vibrating smart pill that promises to shake the crap out of you. And we mean that completely literally. Here's how it works.
Deals

The best sound machines to help you fall (and stay) asleep

Whether you find that sleep better with white noise, rain sounds, or deep sleep music, there’s a sound machine on the market that will be able to help you catch more z’s in no time at all.
Wearables

Our favorite fitness trackers make it fun to keep moving

Looking for your first fitness tracker, or an upgrade to the one you're already wearing? There are plenty of the wrist-worn gadgets available. Here are our picks for the best fitness trackers available right now.