Week in Review: 10 Must-Read Articles

What's new at J. Crew this Spring? An IPO?

What’s new at J. Crew this Spring? An IPO?

New York—One potential next hot product in fashion accessories had a preview this week, but it wasn’t in a major runway show or even a big trade show like the upcoming BaselWorld.

No, instead it originated in Silicon Valley where Google shared its soon-to-be-launched Android Wear, a new operating system for mobile devices that will made its debut in smartwatches, including styles created by Fossil Group.

‘Moonshot’ Technology?

The fact that an Internet powerhouse like Google plans such a technology gives a major boost to the smartwatch category. Moreover, at a time when many decry the lack of innovation or a new “It” product at retail, Android Wear may be a welcome remedy.

In a consumer survey taken just after Christmas,The NPD Group, Inc. asked shoppers what they found exciting at retail. More than have replied: “nothing.”

“Think about that for a minute; 52% of those that shopped said the holiday choices were not new and exciting,” said NPD Chief Analyst Marshal Cohen. “How do you expect to drive holiday growth if you aren’t offering new or ‘exciting’ products? Without getting consumers jazzed about what to buy for their loved ones, as well as for themselves, it makes for dull and tedious holiday shopping.”

Not everyone is so enamored of Google and its latest tech innovation. The company alienated some geeks with the lukewarm reception its Google Glass received. Which begs the question: could the new smartwatch operating system be yet another example of “moonshot” technologies—that is an innovation for the few but lost on the many?

There were more than a few critical articles online this week. Here’s the top 10 not to miss:

Google Goes After the Smartwatch Market

Hermès’ 2013 Profit a Record, But Faces Weakening Yen Ahead

Mulberry CEO Resigns After Profit Warnings

Vera Bradley Q4 Profit, Sales Down, But Beats Estimates

ICE Crystal Jewelry Awards: Students, Mentors Meet (Pt. 2)

Report: Fast Retailing, J. Crew Drop Acquisition Talks

Sears Holdings to Spin Off Lands’ End on April 4

American Apparel Faces Stock Delisting Over Delayed Annual Report

Golden Gate Takes Major Stake in Ann Inc.

Walmart Steps Up Efforts to Boost U.S. Manufacturing

 

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