The ideal customer is any ready-to-wear brand with a global presence with physical stores and also an E-commerce platform.
There are more than 400 brands in the world with more than 300 stores. They all face the same challenges: how to gradually bring more experience to the consumer while obtaining the necessary tools to better produce, better manage the stock, and provide an ever more personalized service.
1. Fashion retail is moving online:
- an example of fast fashion with Zara https://e lpais.com/elpais/2018/03/15/inenglish/1521107497_203035.html
- some figures from luxury fashion: https://qz.com/1225759/the-luxury-online-fashion-market-is-set-to-more-than-triple-by-2025/
- pure online players like Amazon are making a move to disrupt this market too: https://www.ft.com/content/795935ac-0205-11e8-9650-9c0ad2d7c5b5
- and conversely Amazon is moving offline for fashion: https://www.forbes.com/sites/annaschaverien/2018/12/29/amazon-online-offline-store-retail/#fea332e51287
2. The cost of online retail for fashion:
- returns are a big problem for online fashion retail: https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevendennis/2018/02/14/the-ticking-time-bomb-of-e-commerce-returns/#3ae52eca4c7f
- because of dead inventory that is returned and destroyed, online fashion retail suffers from a huge sustainability issue, even more so than traditional fast fashion retailers: https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-45766366
- rates of returns: this article is a little old but still true http://blog.fashionmetric.com/apparel-retailers-start-2016-with-a-30-return-rate/
- in fact the rate of returns has grown since then as consumers adopt new behaviors based on "free returns" (the specific cost of the "fit problem"): https://www.businessoffashion.com/articles/news-analysis/online-clothing-retailers-hunt-for-better-fit-to-cut-costly-returns
- some (slightly exaggerated) figures on online retail and "size trust" by one of our cohorts: https://www.essentialretail.com/news/online-fashion-consumer-confidence/
- for a comprehensive look at the industry please take a look at the BoF - McKinsey "state of fashion 2019 report" : https://cdn.businessoffashion.com/reports/The_State_of_Fashion_2019.pdf
BoF: What do you think are the most important technological advances in the year to come? NB: Without a shadow of a doubt, something that improves size [and] fit, for customers and brands would be an absolute game-changer. It’s about; ‘Here’s my body shape, how can I match my body shape to the products on sale in a way that I don’t have to worry about returns?’ That will be a game-changing piece of technology, but I don’t know what the real deal is, in terms of a solution. I’ve looked at lots of different manifestations that are getting close. I’ve looked at avatar solutions, I’ve looked at uploading pictures of yourself, I’ve looked at other solutions using data analytics to recommend… We’ve got one of those live right now. [But it’s got to be] something that’s engaging, intuitive and helps customers resolve that simple problem.Asos.com CEO - Nick Beighton :
The geometry-based morphological measurement method breaks down the shape of a human from a 3D scan into sections every X centimetres and measures the circumference of those sections, then, based on the measurements and shape of the cross-section, infers the physical location that the measurements correspond to. The results of such systems are inaccurate as they are relying on the location selected by the algorithm to perform the measurements: if there is any noise or inaccuracy in the scan, the results will be very bad.
This method is used by two companies currently on the market: Telmat in France and Human-Solutions in Germany. Both enjoy relative success with this method but they need to develop new tools as the provided levels of accuracy and speed are not in line with what the fashion market needs right now. This type of technology also does not allow for establishing the building block of using the scan as an animated avatar, since the scan analysis does not have any “intelligent” knowledge of which parts of the body are being analysed.
The AI-based morphological measurement method consists in training an AI tool to recognise specific features on the 3D scan data and to use the locations of these features to extract measurements.
This method has been researched by the Max Planck institute of Tuebingen under professor Michael Black and developed by a company called Body Labs, who are a customer of Treedy’s and who are using one of the scanners developed by Treedy’s for their research. In September of 2017 Body Labs was sold to Amazon for an undisclosed amount of money.
- https://3dlook.me - this company aims to provide human body scanning services accurate enough to give sizing recommendations based on a couple of photos from a smartphone.
- http://mysizeid.com/ - this is a clone of 3dlook but less credible.
- There is also http://nettelo.com which looks even less "real".
- We can also mention some other projects that fall into this category that are projects from fashion brands or retailers: Original Stitch's "bodygram", Zozotown's "zozo suit" which had already been cancelled, As you can see there are many companies looking to make themselves known in 3D body scanning, but as far as we can tell we are the ones with the most traction with large online retailers and fashion brands, and we are working to keep it that way!