At Last, Kinect Can Size You Up For Jeans

The Kinect’s powerful depth- and position-sensing sensors have been put to many a noble purpose: basic artificial vision, translating sign language, controlling humanoid robots, and real-time 3D mapping of the real world. But at last it can help you pick out a pair of jeans.

You may not be aware of the alarming fact that up to 40% of clothing purchased is returned because of poor fit. Something must be done! Thoughtfully, Bloomingdale’s contracted with British body-mapping firm (it’s a thing) Bodymetrics to provide an in-store service using Kinects that analyzes and categorizes your body, the better to find you clothes that fit. At long last, our global nightmare of loose jeans is over.

You step into the pod, where eight Kinect sensors arranged “in a circle” (we presume they mean an octagon) produce a detailed 3D map of your body in just five seconds. It’s a bit like what they do to you at the airport, but without all the radiation.

Once you’ve been scanned in (and created your Bodymetrics account, obviously), your body is classified into one of three non-judgmental-sounding groups: emerald, sapphire, or ruby. You can then check out jeans and other items in-store or use the body map online to match yourself with sizes and styles that complement your body. Don’t bring your preconceived notions of gems with you, though, this is a safe place for all cuts, from brilliant to teardrop.

I joke, but body mapping and augmented shopping like this really promises to be a huge space in the next decade as online sales continue to erode retail. The beginning stages may be a little ridiculous, but that’s often the case with emerging technologies. The Bloomingdale’s pods will be available until the end of the weekend.