Personalized Window Shopping

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Visual merchandising is embracing technology. Less than two weeks after our writing about a "Virtual Fitting Room" at a Topshop in Moscow that uses Microsoft Kinect, Intel Labs is working on a technology that will give shoppers the ability to see how they look wearing the latest fashions on display in shop windows, according to the Telegraph.

With the help of information stored on mobile devices, researchers are developing a system that will recognize people as they walk past a shop, and produce a life-size image of them on a screen outside, dressed in clothes from the store. A "personal mannequin" electronic likeness is then created for display in the shop windows using body measurements that individual consumers have registered and asked to be stored on the retailer's central computer.

For the technology to work, consumers must register a series of eight body measurements that detail their height, waistline, arm and leg length along with other dimensions required to produce a realistic on-screen replica of their body.

Nola Donato, from Intel Labs, the computer chip manufacturer which is developing the system, said: "We can produce a three dimensional model of a dress and put it on the body on screen to allow customers to see how they would look in that item. They would also be able to mix and match or try different sizes to see if it looks different."

The system will also be able recognize whether someone is male or female, their approximate age and whether they are in a group such as a family. It then displays advertising images it deems to be most appropriate to the people standing in front of it. Another project under development aims to use facial recognition software to target advertising on billboards according to the appearance of passersby like the NEC digital signage launched in earlier this year in Tokyo.


This type of technology needs a strong lifestyle component in order for it to feel authentic. Personalization could save consumers time during the decision making process and checkout if brands can safeguard security.