Towards the end of August this year, tech giant Google collaborated with Paper magazine in a crowd sourcing competition to get new watch faces. The faces were meant for the Android Wear series, specifically for the fall collection and the grand prize winner was set to get awesome rewards. Previously, Google opted to work with professional designers and established design companies to come up with the Android Wear watch faces. The open challenge was, therefore, an empowering initiative as anyone who desired to gain recognition had a chance to enjoy great benefits if selected as the winner.
Competition Timelines and Instructions
Submissions were allowed over a couple of weeks with the exact submission deadline for any interested parties being the 15th of September 2016. The participants were directed to submit their entries through Instagram features where the posts needed to carry the hashtags #AndroidWear and #WearWhatYouWant. The two firms indicated that the competition is part of the celebrations behind the upcoming Fashion Week events and had a global outreach.
The nature of designs to be submitted was not restricted and was actually very broad. Paper and Google allowed submissions in the form of designs sketched out on a napkin as well as a simple photo. This enhanced the lack of geographical limits to participants in the design competition allowing anyone the chance to have their watch face model to be part of Android Wear’s Fall Collection.
Panel of Judges
The two firms enlisted five judges to help in the selection process. These five individuals are knowledgeable in matters of fashion and include Cynthia Rowley who is the Made Fashion Week co-founder, fashion designer Ty Hunter, and Jenne Lombardo – the Terminal Presents founder. The other two comprised of celebrity stylist Morten Just and Mickey Boardman, Paper’s editorial director as well as Android Wear designer. The entries were discussed by the judges and the winners selected via a Google Hangout. All five noted that the innovation and creativity incorporated in all the submitted designs were greatly inspiring.
Spoils for the Design Victors
The competition involved picking five winning designs that are to be included in the fall collection of Android Wear. These five finalists got to pick a Huawei smartwatch of their choice from the Elegant or Jewel design options alongside two MODE snap-and-swap watchbands as their winnings. The grand prize winner, also from one of the five finalists, was to get more than being in the fall collection designs. The grand prize package featured a choice of a Huawei smartwatch, whether Elegant or Jewel and airfare to and from Paris alongside a plus-one. The visit to Paris was to allow the winner be part of Fashion Week as they enjoy paid-for four night’s hotel accommodation and a mentoring session with one of the selection judges.
Italian Musician Emerges Vvictorious
The competition’s finalists were recently announced and the grand prize winner is Italian Andrea Gaita who is a music student at the Italian Music Academy. Andrea’s passions include art, photography, jazz music and design. As per the announced winners package for the design competition, Andrea got a lifetime chance to be an attendant of the Paris Fashion Week. The trip is all expense paid as promised and Mickey Boardman, one of the competition’s judges, gave Andrea his new Android Wear watch. Boardman also proceeded to offer Andrea mentorship for three sessions covering key areas of design, fashion, and great style. In addition to all that, Andrea also got to meet with the Google Paris Fashion & Luxury team who offered him the chance to visit their offices and discuss the winning design.
Daylight Comes Out on Top
The winning watch faces to be included in the Android Wear fall collection are titled Daylight, Textile, Flamingo, Keyaki, and Vertigo. All have a distinctive design making them appear unique and stylish. Daylight is Andrea Gaita’s design which is made to have shifting visuals and color as the time passes in a day. For instance, the design features the sun and a cloud on a blue background appearing as the sky in the early hours of the day. The backdrop becomes more representative of the dusk sky when it gets darker in the day and the sun sets. The judges pointed out that the shifting style of Andrea’s design helped have him picked as the grand prize winner.
The other finalists’ designs are also unique and stylish with the Keyaki model by Marco A. being centered on events unfolding and nature changing about an elaborate tree while Textile, designed by Ron N., is pretty much a fashion show on the wrist with a special fabric for each day. Vertigo, by Dave K., is designed to allow you read the time always with visuals of moving, dancing and handstands and Flamingo, by Andrea M., features a flamingo that dissolves as the battery level reduces.
The winning designs are now fully functioning watch faces for Android Wear. They can be found on Google Play at no charge. We shall wait to see if Google will pursue crowdsourcing again or resort to established designers.