Prototype project lets lovers touch over the Internet
In a new campaign encouraging Australians to ‘Durexperiment’, Durex Australia and Havas Worldwide Sydney have revealed the launch of Fundawear, a prototype set of underwear that allows couples to connect by sending touch over the internet for the first time.
Fundawear adds a new dimension to Skype and social media. Previously couples could only communicate visually, the technology behind Fundawear now means that couples can touch, tease, tickle and tantalize, even when they are apart.
In Australia, Durex is a challenger brand with low awareness versus the market leader. Only thirty-five percent of young Aussies mention Durex when asked to name condom brands in Australia. Those that do know Durex see it and the market leader as ‘like for like’ in attributes such as trust and safety.
In addition, this is a category where you pay a penalty for not being top of mind, as consumers spend an average three seconds at shelf, so it is important to capture them prior to purchase.
The aim of Fundawear and the ‘Durexperiment’ platform is to encourage consumers to engage with the brand, creating an image for Durex that encapsulates what sexual freedom, adventure, and originality mean.
Fundawear is the ultimate proof of the brand’s innovative approach to sex, allowing couples to connect even when they’re apart.
To develop the world-first technology behind Fundawear, Havas approached Snepo Technologies and fashion designer Billie Whitehouse. The team worked closely to create the garments, the technology and a smartphone app that allows them to seamlessly communicate the sensation of touch.
When one person touches their touchscreen device, and a signal is sent wireless via a real time server to their partner’s smartphone. The signal is then instantaneously sent to touch-actuators woven into the fabric of the partner’s underwear, transferring the sensation of touch to their skin. The Fundawear app is built in Apple’s iOS platform but can be released onto Android and other smartphone platforms in the future.
Havas and Snepo initially spent weeks talking with Universities, research labs and experts in recreating human touch and other bio-movement.
Fundawear is wearable, easily worn, and concealed under normal clothing. It had to be sexy and feel good on, so cues were taken from attractive and comfortable lingerie. The team developed a custom-built miniature circuit boards so the tech can be comfortably incorporated within the garment. We used pico vibes, the sensors used in touchscreen devices, to give the closest proximity to intensity and feeling of real touch.
The team worked with Billie Whitehouse to incorporate the tech into a custom-made Fundawear garments, ensuring the sensors with perfectly placed to create maximum sensitivity.
For the launch, Havas has created a ‘Durexperiment’ Facebook campaign that encourages people to experiment with different ways of enjoying great sex. Four online videos have been created for the launch to bring to life the reality of Fundawear and to excite the audience about now having the ability to touch over the internet.
Steve Coll, Executive Creative Director of Havas Worldwide Sydney said: ‘’Durex is an incredibly innovative brand, constantly looking for ways for people can get even more enjoyment from their relationship. The intention of this campaign is to draw attention to that innovative thinking. As work and modern life keep couples apart more often, Skype and social media have allowed us to stay in touch visually, but not physically. Durex Fundawear represents the next step, where we can add the ability to touch over the internet. It’s technology that has the potential to make a huge difference to people’s lives and the way couples connect.”
Havas has also released a series of sexy, provocative YouTube films that recreate the story of Fundawear, including a world-first live trial where a real couple used this innovative technology for the first time. Also interviews with our experts, and this communication will be seeded in popular Australian blogs and websites. For those wanting to find out more, there is a dedicated Durexperiment Facebook page with exclusive interviews on the fashion, technology and sociological implications of Fundawear, allowing the community to be entertained on an ongoing basis. (As of this morning the number of views has reached over the 2 million mark).
Dr. Nikki Goldstein, Sexologist and Relationship experts said: “When it comes to sex, people often focus the majority of importance on penetration rather than touch, which can be vital for intimacy, sexual pleasure and relationship satisfaction. When we touch someone we have the ability to connect with them, allow them to feel secure and desired, and even release sex hormones that can help us get in the mood. Fundawear will not only help to replicate touch when a couple can't physically be together, but also help people laugh, enjoy and have fun with the intimate side of their relationship. Instead of a text, email or phone call to let them know you are thinking about them, why not touch them?”
Christopher Tedesco, Marketing Director Durex, added: ““At Durex, we believe sex should be fun – spontaneous and full of surprises. That’s why we are continually ‘durexperimenting’ with new ways to encourage people to have the best sex ever. Fundawear is he first ‘Durexperiment’ and we’re excited about the opportunity it presents to couples.”
Durex Australia has committed to develop Fundawear as a fully-functional working prototype, with further development plans dependent on public interest. However, for those keen to try the product, Durex is putting Fundawear to the ultimate test by giving away a night in a luxury hotel with 2 rooms for the couple to try Fundawear on themselves. Those interested in experimenting should visit facebook.com/Durex.Australia
Havas WW Australia Team:
Steve Coll, Executive Creative Director
Jack Nunn, Copywriter
Jay Morgan, Digital Creative Director
William Brown, Digital Art Director
Manuella Perche, Brand strategist/Group Account Director