UCL spin-out Chirp brings London Fashion Week alive with digital birdsong
13 September 2013
The Chirp app, which has been a number one download in the App Store in countries including the UK, German and China and is today also launched on Android, enables people to share data such as photos, web links and text through two-second audio clips which sound like digital birdsong.
The distinctive chirping sound is designed to work even at low volumes in places like shops, offices or busy streets.
Topshop is using Chirp to send to its show visitors and customers catwalk images, which when tapped will reveal secrets and backstage image extras from around the LFW show on Sunday 15th September.
Chirps will be broadcast from especially created Chirp Gardens at both its show space at Regents Park and at its Oxford Street flagship store, as well as via a Chirp Gallery on their live streaming website.
Chirp is the brainchild of Patrick Bergel and Professor Anthony Steed of the Department of Computer Science. The idea was initially funded by UCL Business (UCLB), the university’s technology transfer agency, who has since invested in the company and are a majority shareholder.
"Each season, we set ourselves the challenge to innovate and excite in a different way with the show; not only in terms of our Collection and show space, but also how we engage with and involve Topshop fans worldwide,” said Sir Philip Green, CEO of Arcadia Group, which owns Topshop. “We love the fact that Chirp allows people to discover new aspects of the Collection and what goes on behind the scenes at London Fashion Week.”
"We are incredibly excited to be working with Topshop at London Fashion Week”. Commented Patrick Bergel, CEO & Founder of Chirp.io. “It's great to be asked to collaborate with a future-facing brand like Topshop, who are always first to find new ways to tell their story. To give our users the opportunity to access and share the latest fashion looks from Topshop with Chirp is a world's first - let the chirping begin!"
"The collaboration with such a high profile brand in this innovative implementation is a fantastic first demonstration of the capability of Chirp technology,” said Marina Santilli, Senior Business Manager at UCL Business, who has worked with Chirp since its inception.
“The Chirp team have worked hard to deliver a platform that is not only robust, but has immense user appeal. This is proving attractive not just to brands but other digitally-minded companies who desire to share content with their audiences; I am looking forward to seeing Chirp used in ever more imaginative ways.”