Internet-connected LED T-shirt lets you flash the world


Plaster your geekhood all over your chest with the tshirtOS, a prototype fashion item featuring a smartphone-controlled LED display that can broadcast Tweets and animations.

by Amanda Kooser

tshirtOS prototype

Talk about a fashion statement.

(Credit: Video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET)

T-shirts have long been used to express opinions, assert individuality, and spread messages. The tshirtOS prototype is trying to become the first commercially available programmable, Internet-connected digital T-shirt.

The shirt is a joint venture between high-tech fashion company CuteCircuit and Scotch whisky maker Ballantine’s. I’m not entirely sure what a high-tech T-shirt has to do with a venerable Scottish alcoholic beverage, but I’m sure there’s a marketing tie-in here somewhere.

The shirt features an integrated LED display, microphone, speaker, and accelerometer. To avoid strapping a big computing device onto your torso to run the gadget, the shirt is controlled via smartphone, which also enables the Internet connection.

This approach opens up endless possibilities for what you could broadcast on a shirt. Tweets? No problem. Animated cats? Sure. Facebook status updates? Of course. NASA Mohawk Guy photos? Yes, please!

CuteCircuit is currently gauging interest in the T-shirt. If enough people are willing to buy in, there’s a chance the shirt could hit the market for real. I, for one, can’t wait to flash a never-ending stream of constantly shifting LOLcats across my chest. source