Artificial intelligence (AI) is an area of computer science that emphasizes the creation of intelligent machines that work and react like humans. AI, machine learning, task automation and robotics are already widely used in business, and this trend seems to be on the rise. AI technologies are about to multiply, and organizations are working hard in order to understand how to take advantage of them. Not only is it helping many industries, like the fashion one, to cut down costs and overheads but is also making the entire platform superior, intuitive and smart.
Fashion industry is creating some breaking-through tools that implement AI and create a total new way of conceiving clothes and business. Not only is it helping the fashion industry to cut down costs and overheads, but is also making the entire platform superior, intuitive and smart. And this is what Amazon just did by implementing a new technology that can transform its business.
AI and Fashion: Amazon, Stitch Fix & Syte.ai
Enterprises entered the AI and data world, and are finding their dimension in it. Now everything is getting automated, and AI can be applied to anything. Even to fashion.
The global fashion industry, 2% of the global GDP, is becoming a more social media-friendly space (also thanks to e-commerce), which has opened up in applications of AI in fashion that may help to shape the future of customer experience.
Saying fashion and Amazon in the same sentence sounds strange, we know it. This company not only started supporting its apparel business last month, but has also developed a new way to do it: an algorithm that forecast fashion trends. This technology learns about fashion styles by viewing images, and then creates similar styles automatically. In fact, a team of researchers in Israel is developing a machine learning device in order to understand if something can be considered stylish or not; another team is developing an algorithm that learns a particular style from images, and can create new similar items from scratch.
Such systems are replacing designers and turning such a subjective thing like fashion into an objective math calculation. This changes everything, the industry itself, and the request for designers and fashion makers. It is changing the job requests and the job market.
Other companies and startup, like Stitch Fix, are blending AI and fashion. What’s their strength? They make personalized recommendations based on user preferences and social-media activity, and new clothes are directly shipped to their door. The company is currently developing and using hundreds of algorithms: a styling algorithm that matches products to clients; an algorithm that matches stylists with clients; an algorithm that calculates how happy a customer is with the service; and one that figures out how much and what kind of inventory the company should buy, and so on. Eric Colson, chief algorithms officer at Stitch Fix stated: “We couldn’t do this with machines alone. We couldn’t do this with humans alone. We’re just trying to get them to combine their powers.”
Syte.ai, a visual search startup focused on fashion products, is making images “shoppable” thanks to AI. Their deep-learning algorithm is transforming any image into something you can buy, without any tags, text or manual work and that is what makes Syte.ai so unique. They are redefining the way machines understand images and launching a ground-breaking approach.
So..what will happen next?
The amount of data we have is so great, that we are practically drowning in it. The true potential of AI is an operating system for data that give us full benefits. An AI first-world can give us insights, and give us the chance to enter a new era of collaboration with machine that can help us understand the world and make better decisions. AI offers the chance to amplify and go beyond our lives, our minds and capabilities, and lead us to a place that goes beyond our imagination.
In the future we will definitely see a range of steady improvements in everyday AI. Online product recommendations will get better, and more professions and jobs will arise. What can happen is that a significant fraction of jobs will be under threat over the coming decade, especially to those that can be easily automate.
Many companies understood its potential, and are acting upon it: fashion industry is not lagging behind. It is turning something creative and subjective into something deriving from math and predictions. From unpredictable to predictable. The marriage of AI and fashion is still at its earliest stages though. This means that people that work in the field are likely to face rising competition as technology firms enter the market.
So, fashion designers should not fret just yet for their position. Tim Oates, a professor at the University of Maryland in Baltimore County, said it could take a long time before a machine can invent a fashion trend, and added:“People innovate in areas like music, fashion, and cinema. What we haven’t seen is a genuinely new music or fashion style that was generated by a computer and really resonated with people.”
But Amazon is already doing its best to make this happen.