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LONDON — Gucci will today unveil its first iPhone/iPod Touch app, aimed at entertaining and enlightening consumers with a 24-hour music channel, hotel and restaurant tips, playlists and a turntable for mixing tracks designed by the music producer Mark Ronson.
This story first appeared in the October 21, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The free app also gives iPhone/iPod Touch users the opportunity to purchase an exclusive model from the limited edition Ronson sneaker collection when the Gucci Icon-Temporary store opens in their respective cities.
Gucci’s collaboration with Apple has been timed to coincide with the opening on Saturday of the temporary New York store at 43 Crosby Street. The traveling sneaker store will move to Miami on Dec. 1, and to London and Tokyo in the spring.
Gucci’s creative director, Frida Giannini, said she sees the app as a “virtual” accessory. “I designed the Gucci app like I would any other accessory,” she told WWD, adding it was important to offer unique content, which is free to download.
Gucci isn’t the first fashion house to offer an app; Chanel and Ralph Lauren are among the companies that already have them. Karl Lagerfeld has his own page called “Chanel News,” where he posts photographs, thoughts and diary entries. There is also footage of runway shows and ad campaigns.
Giannini said it was important for the Gucci app to stand alone from the brand’s Web site and offer unique content, such as the playlists, the Gucci music channel with a live stream of songs and Gucci Beats, which offers the virtual turntable, where users can mix their own music, scratch it, then post it on Facebook or send an e-mail.
“Music is an essential part of my vision, and the app is the perfect instrument to be able to bring music into the virtual Gucci world,” she said. “Working with Mark Ronson has obviously given me the opportunity to include a cool factor and exclusive content.”
The brand is planning to post periodic updates of Gucci news and events — such as behind-the-scenes show and fashion shoot footage and ad campaigns — on the app.
It has also included a little black book of Giannini’s favorite hotels, restaurants, clubs and shops in 20 major cities around the world, using Google GPS locators. All of Gucci’s stores worldwide are also on the app’s GPS system.
The launch of the app comes one week after Gucci unveiled its first social networking micro-site to promote Gucci Eyeweb, a new collection of sunglasses aimed at 18- to 25-year-olds. The global, multilingual social networking microsite allows users to upload photos around the clock and share their galleries on Facebook and Twitter.