NikeConnect lets NBA fans unlock exclusive content from their team jersey

In the age of smart clothing, wearing a player’s name on the back of your jersey is just not enough. These days, when companies promise to be the Netflix of jersey rentals, the clothing you spend a good chunk of change on ought to offer something beyond the display of your team allegiance.

Nike on Friday, September 15, introduced its line of NikeConnect jerseys. The replica ($110) and authentic ($200) jerseys provide NBA fans with access to exclusive content. After downloading an accompanying app for an iPhone 7 or an Android device with NFC capability, NikeConnect wearers will be able to unlock highlights, stats, game tickets, Spotify playlists, and limited exclusive apparel deals, among other unannounced benefits, by scanning the jersey’s “jock tag.” Gamers who purchase a specific player’s jersey will also be able to provide that player with a boost when they play NBA 2K18.

“We know what we can do — make amazing gear,” Stefan Olander, Nike’s vice president of digital innovation, told ESPN. “But we wanted to do something more, and we know the passion that consumers have for these players and their teams.”

Olander told ESPN that NikeConnect can also serve as a more limited platform for athletes who want to engage directly with their most loyal, ardent fans, rather than using their social media channels for all the public to see. For example, say NBA superstar LeBron James wants to post a workout video of himself as a means of getting fans hyped for the upcoming season, it might be more prudent for him to do so in a more private setting, rather than potentially being openly mocked by his NBA peers. Nike will also know who bought the jersey, where they live, and where they scan it from, according to ESPN. Nike already seems to be salivating at the potential treasure trove of marketing data.

“We could tell LeBron how many fans of his checked in from Beijing,” Olander said. “If you look at this as a new gateway to a connection with a consumer, you could just imagine where this goes.”

NikeConnect launches on September 29 at nike.com/nbanbastore.com, and a Nike store or team retailer near you.

Health & Fitness

In search of the fountain of youth, beauty companies turn to tech

Beauty tech is a fairly new concept, but at CES 2019, companies such as Olay, L’Oreal, and Neutrogena were fully embracing it with all kinds of gadgets that promise to give you glowing skin.
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Mobile

If you're looking for a good laugh, here are 70 questions to ask Siri

Siri has come a long way since her first appearance on the iPhone 4S in 2011. We know she can make appointments and give directions, did you know she can make you laugh too? If you want proof, here are lots of funny questions to ask Siri.
Gaming

Here's everything you need to know to trade in 'Pokémon Go'

After literally years of waiting, Pokémon Go finally gives trainers the option to trade Pokémon with others. It's not easy, though, and the cost is quite high if you try trading with strangers.
Outdoors

Cyberfishing Smart Rod Sensor transforms normal fishing rods into data recorders

The Cyberfishing Smart Rod Sensor, on display at CES 2019, upgrades normal fishing rods into smarter versions of themselves. The device will work with a companion app to record data, including fishing hotspots and trophy fish details.
Emerging Tech

Where are they now? A look back at last year’s Top Tech of CES winners

What happened to the 14 prize-winning products we singled out as the coolest things we saw at last year's CES 2018? Join us as we take a look at what the past 12 months has meant for them.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: heat-powered watches, phone cases with reflexes

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Emerging Tech

You may soon be able to summon an autonomous wheelchair like an Uber

At CES 2019, autonomous wheelchair company Whill unveiled its vision for a world in which people can summon its wheelchairs by app, in locations such as museums, airports, and city centers.
Emerging Tech

Furrion’s luxurious smart yacht looks like the perfect vessel for a Bond villain

Forget smart watches and the like: when it comes to the biggest smart technology at CES 2019, the literal answer can be nothing other than the 78-foot, high-tech luxury smart yacht, Adonis.
Emerging Tech

Look forward to your morning commute with one of the best ebikes available

A proper ebike is perfect for commuting or a trek along the trailhead, with most offering pedal assistance and a long-range battery. As more brands offer their own take on this innovative way to get around, it's hard to distinguish the…
Outdoors

Here are all the best rain jackets on the market right now

From high-tech, lightweight shells to modern-looking, waterproof trench coats, check out our list of the best rain jackets built to keep you dry and looking stylish in any season.
Emerging Tech

The best solar chargers for your phone, tablet, and other battery-powered gear

Looking for a gizmo that can help you charge your phone while on the go? Here, we've outlined the best solar chargers on the market, whether you're looking to charge your phone once, twice, or three times over.
Outdoors

Drink what nature provides with the best water purifiers

Looking for reliable water purification? Staying hydrated is important, especially when you are hiking or camping far from civilization. Check out our picks of the best water purifiers for your camp, backpack, or pocket.
Emerging Tech

Yamaha’s new app lets you tune your motorcycle with a smartphone

It used to be that if you wanted to tune your motorcycle’s engine and tweak its performance, you needed specialized tools and even more specialized knowledge. Yamaha’s new Power Tuner app changes that.