Google CEO Eric Schmidt has talked about being able to help people decide what to do next or to even know what is best to do next (just Google “creepy CEO ideas” and you’ll see his full library, no kidding). Now through its new Boutiques.com (which was the offspring of the Like.com purchase of a year ago) Google can help women decide what to buy and wear! Cool in one way but creepy in another but it is what it is.
The way we shop for fashion is different from how we buy cameras—especially online. With fashion, reviews and specs are less important; fashion shopping is about discovering something that fits your taste and feels right. The web works well for buying cameras and other hard goods but for soft goods, such as clothing and accessories, it’s not the same as shopping in a store.
Today, we’re excited to share with you our first step towards realizing this goal. It’s calledBoutiques.com: a personalized shopping experience that lets you find and discover fashion goods, by creating your own curated boutique or through a collection of boutiques curated by taste-makers—celebrities, stylists, designers and fashion bloggers. Boutiques uses computer vision and machine learning technology to visually analyze your taste and match it to items you would like.
In essence, Google is taking your tastes and running them through their black box and spitting out the new you on the other side. Neat!
In all honesty, I am ill-equipped to truly cover this kind of ‘innovation’. Why? Because it doesn’t take a Phd, mathematicians and alogorithms to determine which pair of jeans I will wear with what T-shirt on most days. Maybe when I dress up and throw on a sweater vest to dress it up but not likely.
This offering is aimed for the high fashion types who live for clothes and they are the ones that certainly benefit from some fashion advice that comes from a knowledge base of fashionistas and then is combined with individual tastes and styles.
Of course, the designers of these various fashions stand to benefit as well. Sell more product!
Here is some more from the Google blog explaining this new offering.
First we partnered with taste-makers of all types. We asked them not just to curate 10-50 great items they loved, but also to teach our site their style and taste. They did this by telling us what colors, patterns, brands and silhouettes they loved and they hated. They took a visual quiz that taught the site to understand their style genre: Classic, Boho, Edgy, etc. Our machine learning algorithms use this information to enable you to shop all of the inventory in the style of that taste-maker, on top of the 50 items they’ve hand-curated.
These days, bloggers, stylists and everyday fashionistas are expressing their sense of style online. We invited them to create boutiques so people could shop their diverse styles. But you have a unique and independent style too, so Boutiques also lets you build your own personalized boutique and get recommendations of products that match your taste.
Once again, for the right person this sounds very cool. For someone like myself I start to wonder just how this kind of technology could be used in many other ways that are not related to fashion. As a result, this kind of technology is interesting to everyone even if you are not a high fashion female.
Can you think of some areas where there are a myriad of options that if given the right input data assistance with getting from Point A to Point B would be helpful? Think about it and give us your wish list of where you would hope Google could take all of this knowledge and provide some help for the unfashionable people.