Amazon wants to help you get dressed.
The newly launched Echo Look is a small, stand-alone camera with Amazon’s artificial intelligence, Alexa. It’s voice controlled and equipped with a background blurring effect and built-in lighting, all aimed at giving users the ability to evaluate an ensemble when a mirror just isn’t cutting it.
The camera is made to snap full-length photos and videos of outfits that can be saved or streamed live to your own or a friend’s phone — a process that seems pulled straight from a “Clueless” lover’s dream.
Amazon is also launching Style Check, a program built to recommend outfits to users, based on current trends and what “looks best,” according to a company spokeswoman.
Users have to upload two photos of themselves in an outfit to Style Check and the program will pick one or the other “in about a minute” through a combination of machine learning and “fashion specialists.”
“The answer takes into account fit, color, styling, seasons and current trends,” the spokeswoman said.
As for what counts as a “fashion specialist” at Amazon, the roles are held by people with some kind of fashion-related professional background, but they’re all “trained to evaluate outfits” in line with Style Check’s method.
While the program and the Echo Look are designed with customer “delight” in mind, a concept Amazon founder Jeff Bezos expounded in a recent letter to investors, both also square nicely with the company’s continued push into fashion and apparel retail.
The e-commerce behemoth last week secured government approval for a patent designed for the “on-demand” creation of apparel through an “environment” of connected and computerized machines that will print and cut patterns, then assemble the garments without need of human assistance.
And Amazon is building out a private label business made up of eight brands, including mostly basic offerings in intimates, casual wear and dresses.
Having access to the wardrobes and tastes of consumers would surely aide Amazon should it decide to become a full-fledged apparel manufacturer and fashion retailer, but the company spokeswoman didn’t specify if photos and other consumer information gathered by Echo Look and Style Check would have a secondary purpose.
“Designated Amazon personnel may view photos and video to provide and improve our services, for example to provide feedback through Style Check. We have rigorous controls in place to restrict access to these images,” the spokeswoman said.
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