I work at ValueFirst Digital Media Private Ltd. I am a Product Marketer in the Surbo Team. Surbo is Chatbot Generator Platform owned by Value First. ...Full Bio
I work at ValueFirst Digital Media Private Ltd. I am a Product Marketer in the Surbo Team. Surbo is Chatbot Generator Platform owned by Value First.
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Artificial Intelligence is transforming India's Fashion & Retail industry
There is popular scene from the movie, "The Devil Wears Prada" where Meryl Streep, who plays the role of a powerful fashion editor gives her assistant a dressing down for not being able to understand fashion. Meryl says that fashion is whatever a select group of designers say it is. This is not going to be true anymore in coming times. The current czars of fashion are soon going to be challenged on their own turf by machines.
Artificial Intelligence has begun to pervade almost every field today. India's fashion and retail industry has also begun to rely on the power of machines to come up with latest styles.
"Fashion is like art, but there is also a lot of data involved in it," says Myntra's chief product officer Ambarish Kenghe. The country's largest fashion e-tailer, in terms of sales, has been selling machine designed T-shirts under the brand name "Moda Rapido" and "Here and Now" for the past six months, with the products sometimes outselling other human augmented designs, according to Myntra.
The idea for "Moda Rapido" took shape during a session to spot trends across various sartorial details such as collars, plackets, sleeves and colours and how they can be used in combination with one another.
"We then took the next leap. We got the software to create various designs by using a combination of algorithms - and to find out which of these designs will practically work," says Kenghe.
The first 30 machine made T-shirts were put on display without telling anyone how it was created.
"It worked better than human-augmented designs," says Kenghe. "Now, we are expanding into 22 categories of clothing like kurtis and jeans."
According to Kenghe, technology brings in efficiency and effectiveness. Something which a designer takes hours to create can be done with the help of a machine in minutes.
"Machine-generated or machine-augmented designs are selling two to three times more than the rest. The two brands are growing at over 200 per cent year-onyear," says Kenghe.
"While expertise and forecasting agencies can be classified as one type of data, collective intelligence from millions of clients has a lot of merit," says Stylumia founder-CEO Ganesh Subramanian, who worked closely with Myntra's Moda Rapido software.
The AI-based SaaS startup in Bengaluru scans the internet for publicly available information about trends across categories and provides it to clients.
In fashion, the design process usually starts six months to a year in advance. "In the age of fast fashion, productivity can be improved 10 times when machines help with pattern recognition and sifting through large volumes of data," says Subramanian.
"Our tool answers a question as simple as "what kind of products are working for H&M in UK right now?" and you'll get the answer in a few seconds," he says.
"Clients say their sales are going up by 50 to 100 per cent by focussing on what sells best," says Subramanian. The bootstrapped startup, which counts Wrangler India and Fastrack among its 40 clients, says machine learning will only play the role of enabler.
Meanwhile, innovations are on in couture to find out what is possible when fashion and technology come together on the red carpet. IBM's Watson " an AI-based program " helped high-fashion label Marchesa create a garment for supermodel Karolina Kurkova to wear at the Met Gala.
In India, the tech giant partnered with Gaurav Gupta & Falguni and Shane Peacock. Sometime in September, Gaurav Gupta used cognitive technology in order to create a sari gown which was worn by the host Archie Punjabi at an award event. The dress lit up depending on the personality of each award winner.
This software was able to process millions of information about a particular personality and related images and gave it a color code. The design was all about showcasing what is possible by bringing together design and technology.