You know when you’re sitting outside a café and you see someone walking down the street in a rockin’ pair of shoes or a hot jacket and you’re dying to run after them to ask where they got it, but shyness overtakes you?
Well, now, as Apple said, ‘there’s an app for that’, and it’s a homegrown Irish app at that.
Style-Eyes launches this week and uses some super-clever image recognition technology to find the product you lusted after on the street, or bar, or wherever, and let you know where to buy it online.
So basically, you take a picture of the item you like (the system uses face blurring technology to ensure people’s privacy), then the app uses it’s magic matching powers to search online catalogues across 1300 well-known brands to then present you with options of items that correspond to what you captured. The selection may be the exact item or a list of items that are very similar, so you snap it, the app finds it and you can buy it – Simple!
Set up by three schoolmates, Mark Hughes, Bobby Pringle and Oisin Mac Fhearai who are all skilled in the tech side of this innovation – Mark recently completed his PhD in the area of machine learning which is essentially training a computer to tell the difference between a dress and a building. Mark says, “it took a long time but after various tweaks, our software can now analyse any image and identify characteristics like the shape, size, pattern and design of any piece of clothing.” They knew they were on to a potential winner when Style-Eyes won the Enterprise Ireland One to Watch award and after successfully doing a deal with Samsung Ireland to launch at the Dublin Fashion Festival last weekend.
It’s a nifty little idea that may well turn into a nifty large success!
The app is multi-platform and free to download. It’s available on Android since last weekend and it launches on Apple today.
Photography by Ailbhe O’Donnell