Online retailer Amazon has won a patent for an on-demand garment manufacturing system, which could see it become an important player in the apparel industry.
According to the patent, the system will provide instructions to a textile assembly production line, including a textile printer and a textile cutter, when a customer places an order. It will arrange items into a textile panel template before directing these panels to sewing stations.
Once the products are printed, cut and assembled as per the orders received, they will be subject to a quality check before entering an electronic system that will either ship them to the customer or send them to a handling facility to be stored.
The patent also suggested there is scope for the system to be expanded beyond clothing. As well as clothing and fabric products, it explained that it could be suitable for use in the manufacturing of accessories and footwear in a variety of materials, including paper, plastic and leather.