Why Asos's augmented reality tool 'See My Fit' is the online shopping update we really need
It allows shoppers to see clothes on models of different heights and sizes
Online shopping always starts on such a high. You scroll for hours through endless options, your screen doubling up as mall bigger than any Dubai has to offer, before you allow your mind to imagine what these shiny new clothes might look like on you.
Of course, you conjure this image based on how the item looks on the size eight, five-foot-ten model the website has probably used to entice you in, and wait patiently for the post to arrive so you can recreate the look.
Then it arrives and more often than not ends in disappointment when you realise that you are, in fact, not a size eight, five-foot-ten model.
But Asos may have now found a solution that will save countless hours of filing returns and trips to the post office. The e-tailer is trailing a new feature which allows you to see how certain items will look on models of different body shapes and heights. It uses augmented reality (AR) to impose the item onto 16 different models, which you can then select and scroll through side-by-side to get a more realistic idea of how the garment might actually look on you.
Of course, it’s still not a flawless system. It allows you to select models between sizes UK four to 18, and heights spanning from five foot one to five foot 11. But just because a model might be a similar height and clothes size to you, it doesn’t mean your body shape is the same. There are plenty of other factors that play into how something fits, but having a visual on 16 different body types is a great place to start.
The ‘See My Fit’ tool is currently available on 800 products across the Asos site – mainly its own brand items – with the view to extend across more products in the near future.
“With this trial of See My Fit, we’re using the latest in AR technology to put the power in our customers’ hands, so they can choose to view a dress on the model that they most identify with, in a way that wouldn’t be possible using traditional model-shooting techniques,” said Tim Carey, senior content manager at Asos Studios.
The technology has been developed by Zeekit, a start-up designed to create a more interactive way of online shopping. The technology allows for a product to be digitally mapped onto a picture of a model, taking in the size, cut and fit of each item, making it hard to tell the difference between the actual picture and the AR version.
“Together with Asos, we have a shared mission to make online fashion as personalised and easy-to-use as possible for customers,” said Yael Vizel, chief executive officer at Zeekit. “With our patented, artificial intelligence-based AR technology powering See My Fit, we can connect the dots between what you see when shopping and what you receive at home, giving customers more confidence in purchasing the products they love.”
At a time when so many of us are trying to be more conscious about fast fashion and the way we shop, Asos is leading the way with an initiative which could go some length in helping to reduce the carbon footprint of our shopping habits – especially for those of us here in the UAE. Think, every Asos order that you buy and return has to be flown back and forth from its Manchester-based hub in the UK, and then there’s the plastic packaging. If See My Fit can show you from the off how something will look, it could do more than just save you some hassle and disappointment.
See My Fit is not the first step into AR Asos has made. In June 2019, it tested its first virtual catwalk, which allowed customers to view models as if they were walking in the room with them. The function was tested by 150,000 Asos shoppers via iOS across 90 items. The company seems to be paving the way for other e-tailers to develop new ways to online shop, giving us a glimpse into how technology and shopping could go hand in hand in the future. Whether See My Fit will be the tool to alleviate my eternal disappointment with online shopping remains to be seen, but until then, it’s a welcome update. The AR images might not be real, but the bodies certainly are, and it's wholly refreshing.
Updated: January 16, 2020 03:23 PM