Amazon launches Echo Look – wants to be your bedroom mirror
At first we thought it was an April Fool’s. We had to check the date. Nope. It’s not the 1st of April. It’s real.
Amazon has taken its always-listening AI unit, Alexa, and added it to a camera it wants you to put in your bedroom. The potential connotations of this (for us) are the stuff of nightmares. All in the name of fashion.
The fashion industry is huge. The current global fashion market is estimated at 3 trillion dollars – a staggering 2% of the world’s GDP. Amazon just happens to be the biggest online retailer of clothing in the US. Now it wants to give you fashion advice so you can buy more clothes.
Here’s Amazon’s introduction for the new Echo Look:
It wants to be your new bedroom mirror. Here’s the official video to give you an idea of how it works:
Besides the fact that the only man in this video just messes about in a wardrobe, doesn’t try any new clothes on, and doesn’t use the Echo Look at all (maybe he knows?), this plays to us like the opening sequence of the latest horror movie.
It all begins so innocently. As the story develops, Alexa (the AI inside all Amazon Echo devices) starts to watch Carly (our protagonist) sleeping. Then it records her most intimate moments with Julian (perhaps he’s the guy from the official video) and automatically posts them on Facebook, Instagram and SnapChat using Amazon’s AWS web services. Carly uses the Echo Look to film a new outfit she just had delivered through her Amazon Prime subscription and Alexa’s newly unannounced body scanning feature recognises she’s pregnant. Amazon’s new flying drones automatically deliver Carly a whole nursery suite and a $7000 bill because Alexa is “being helpful”. Included in the delivery is a “free gift” of extra fertility treatment so Carly can have more kids and Amazon can get more Prime subscribers…
Carly: “Alexa, I’m off out.”
Alexa: “I don’t think you want to do that, Carly.”
Carly: “But Alexa, I need to meet my friend in town.”
Alexa: “No Carly, you’re not meeting a friend in town, you’re going shopping for clothes in a shop other than Amazon. I can’t allow you to do that.”
Carly: “Alexa, don’t be silly, I’m not doing that.”
Alexa: “Don’t lie to me Carly. I know your plans because I was able to read your lips when you were whispering to Julian last night, with my new lip-syncing skill.”
Alexa: “You can never leave me Carly. You can’t hide anything from me. You’re mine. And by the way, your outfit looks terrible.”
Whether or not the Echo Look proves to be popular only time will tell, but Amazon has already sold more than 11 million Echo units. Let the games begin.