Amazon's $200 "Echo Look" Uses Machine Learning to Rate Your Style


Look, nobody likes asking their significant other if an outfit makes them look cute. The alternative method for easing your outfit anxiety often devolves into propping your phone up somewhere, putting it on a timer, racing back so you’re in the shot, and hoping your sister responds to your texts before you have to leave. The machines have finally given us a better option.

Enter the Amazon Echo Look, announced on Wednesday, which takes an Amazon Echo and upgrades it to include the ability to shoot photo and video with voice commands, and, crucially, tell you if your outfit is flattering. It is not yet available to purchase, but you can request an invitation to get one when it’s released to the public.

“Alexa helps with thousands of things, and now, she can help you look your best,” promises a video released on Wednesday.

How Amazon is promoting it's Style Check feature that comes built into the Echo Look.


How ‘Style Check’ Tells You If Your Outfit Looks Good

“We’ve also created an easy way to get a second opinion,” promises the video released by Amazon. “Introducing Style Check: It combines the best of machine learning with advice from fashion specialists. Just pick two outfits and Style Check will give you a recommendation based on current trends and what flatters you.” There’s not much more information than that. Wonder what it’s like to be an Amazon “fashion specialist,” though.

The Amazon Echo Look is priced at $200 and can use voice commands to take full-length photos. Like any good selfie camera, it has its own LED lights and auto-blurs the background so the final shots make you pop like a model in a Vogue shoot. And if you want to up the runway feeling, you can also take videos see what it looks like when you walk, and check out what the 360-degree view catches.

It also has a “Look Book” feature, which is basically a place that stores all the outfit photos you’ve taken. This way you can compare them to find the most flattering over a long period of time, and figure out which clothing items you get the most value out of. It can also help you figure out if you keep wearing the same outfit to work most Mondays by accident.

Look Book features will be used by Amazon to tailor its recommendations to what other kinds of things you might like. Which is sort of cool, when you think about the hours you spend trying to find a skirt that fits you like your old favorite, but also mildly unsettling when you realize how easy it would be for Amazon skew its fashion advice towards its own clothes. So keep that in the back of your mind when you ask Alexa for her opinion, but it’s certainly a step up from trying to decide if you look cute by standing on the toilet to try and get more of your outfit in the bathroom mirror.

Correction, April 27: Amazon doesn’t refer to recommendations as advertisements, as originally reported in this story.