Alexa's Got Eyes For Your Outfit

by Jack Sommer

The Alexa family has birthed a new member for our households. The new addition, named Echo Look, is related to Dot and Tap - and has the same voice functions - but also has eyes for you in the bedroom. You see, it has an integrated camera you can activate by just saying out loud "Alexa, take a picture" (or video) for the perfect fashion shot.

Taking a snapshot or video of your daily fashions with Echo Look is another use case for the Alexa line. It fulfills a consumer need to take hands-free selfies when it matters most: when you're getting ready to go to work or getting ready to go out for a night on the town. With integrated LED lighting and a special blurred background feature, it gives you higher quality images focused on your clothing and not your messy room. 

Another interesting feature is "Style Check" (which pairs to the Echo Look app), which gives you fashion advice from algorithms that are based on fit, color, styling, and current trends. This robo advice is also informed by opinions and guidance from real fashion experts. After taking the images, you have the option both to save those images to share on social media or to just to keep a private personal lookbook within the app. 

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Besides Amazon coming to market first with this new product type, the real genius behind this is the ability to integrate the AmazonFashion section of their e-commerce site. Considering that the Echo Look also helps you discover new brands and styles inspired by your lookbook and wardrobe, it wouldn't be surprising if partnerships were even formed with brands to give them a higher chance of getting suggested - or at least offering special targeted deals. There's even a feature in the Echo Look app that offers this opportunity up on a silver platter. It's called "Inspired by Your Look" and it suggests brands compatible with your style. 

We could even see the device being used in retail stores, where people could ask their friends/audience in real time which shirt or pair of shoes they're deciding on buying looks better. Not to mention, of course, posting daily outfit photos on social media. With shoppable images (like Pinterest) becoming more of a reality, too, where items someone is wearing could link out to where to buy them - this could also tie into other influencer/commerce related opportunities.

Observing what the users of Echo Look are wearing, through AI learning, will also be valuable longterm information for Amazon. The Echo Look will continue to gather data on what's being worn most often in the home and in the store (although the information will be limited to just among those who like to take pictures of what they're wearing). This real-time data is not unlike what Uber gathers with drivers information as it moves towards improved AI for its platform (and driverless technology, ultimately). And, of course, this data should translate into valuable analytics for sales planning.

Echo Look may not be the closet computer from Clueless, but for $200, we're sure that fashion-types will give it a shot (or a whole photoshoot, or a video). Plus, with appeal to both consumers and brands alike, we could easily see the Echo Look helping Alexa to expand its lead further in the increasingly competitive virtual assistant appliance category.