Amazon’s Echo Look took another step toward becoming a smarter styling tool.
A trigger phrase — “Alexa, how do I look?”, “How can I look better?” or “Compliment my outfit” — gets the ball rolling, with the voice assistant snapping a full-body photo. About 10 seconds later, Alexa comes back with styling advice to enhance the outfit.
There’s potential for confusion, since there’s also a “How Do I Look Today?” Alexa skill, though the skill is more about positive affirmation than fashion.
It’s also similar to “Style Check,” but there are distinctions. Where “Style Check” helps people choose between different looks, “How Do I Look?” aims to enhance a single outfit. In both cases, the responses rely on a blend of insights from Amazon’s machine learning algorithms and massive complex of accumulated data, as well as advice from human fashion experts.
In its FAQ section, Amazon describes its fashion specialists as coming “from varied backgrounds in the fashion, retail, editorial, styling and creative fields” who have “honed their expertise through ongoing training focusing on personal style, seasonal trends and more.” The page also states that the advice “takes into account your wardrobe and personal attributes,” seemingly to emphasize that the recommendations are customized.
The Echo Look already had “Pairing Ideas,” which suggests coordinating items for users’ outfits. But according to a spokeswoman, the new beta feature is more responsive. “Pairing Ideas” can take up to a day to return results. It may also involve working with the mobile app.
In some ways, “How Do I Look?” seems akin to “Pairing Ideas 2.0,” with a faster response and simplified way of asking for advice. And it puts the Echo Look a little bit closer to its goal of becoming a bona fide styling tool.
Unlike tech giants like Google, Amazon has been very steady about making test devices and beta features official. If “How Do I Look?” performs well among testers, and Amazon follows its historical pattern, then expect the feature to go public sometime next year.