Alexa, a.k.a. the magical voice-command-activated, life-simplifying device otherwise known as the Amazon Echo, hasn't been able to do all that much in terms of fashion assists — yet. She can check the weather for you (though, consider yourself forewarned, her forecasts can be vague at best and straight-up "WTF, Alexa?!"-eliciting wrong at worst). And, yes, she's been able to immediately order you some new skivvies with a simple ask — or, if you're an enterprising six-year-old in the market for a dollhouse and cookies, you can ask for that, too. But the latest addition to the ever-expanding family of Amazon Echo devices could be a game-changer for your closet.
Today, the e-comm behemoth rolled out the Echo Look, which is the first Alexa-equipped device that has a built-in camera and and is expressly meant for your closet. Dubbed as “the first artificially intelligent style assistant with Alexa that helps you look your best,” the hands-free device takes photos — via voice command, natch — of you in your favorite (and/or questionable) outfits. Those shots can then be compiled into a lookbook on Amazon's app, as shown below, so you can flip through the contents of your closet on a screen, which reminds us of Cher Horowitz's mythical outfit-chronicling computer program in Clueless.
You can mount the oblong, black-and-white gadget on the wall, or prop it on your dresser. And don't worry if your bedroom or living room lighting is subpar for your selfie game: This new-gen Alexa is tricked out with built-in LED lighting, and she'll take photos or short video of your getup from all angles so you can fully check yourself and that #OOTD you're on the fence about. The device's camera is also equipped with depth-sensing abilities and "computer vision-based background blur" to keep the focus on your look (and, if need be, obscure that perpetually messy, clothes-strewn chair in the background; it's okay, we have one, too).
Last month, the site quietly debuted an "Outfit Compare" feature that allows Amazon Prime members to get a second opinion on two looks, although it didn't have any sort Alexa-equipped abilities and/or photo-taking wizardry involved. The Echo Look does have a souped-up version of "Outfit Compare," called "Style Check." It uses "advanced machine learning algorithms" and, dubiously, "advice from fashion specialists" to help you choose between different ensembles; we're pretty skeptical about the fashion specialists, and the idea of having anyone, much less a machine, judge our outfits.
We've also got some reservations about a smart, Amazon-powered gadget that can not only potentially eavesdrop on our at-home conversations, but watch us, too. But there is indeed an off button for the mic and camera. And, hey, any paranoia might just be outweighed for you by how the morning routine would be improved and simplified by something that takes great outfit selfies for you, and involves nothing more than your voice (and, thankfully, no selfie stick). Echo Look isn't out yet, but it'll ss when it is; you can request an invitation to buy one here.