Home > Uncategorized > Why Body Scanning Technology has Failed for Retail Apparel

Why Body Scanning Technology has Failed for Retail Apparel

Why Body Scanning Technology has Failed for Retail Apparel

by Bud Robinson July 72015


BACKGROUNDImage result for fashion body scanner

The women’s apparel industry has long indulged in “Vanity Sizing”, a belief that women will pay more for a brand that fits them with a smaller size than the cheaper brands’ (standard) sizes.

This has made it harder to shop, especially in Malls and on the Internet.

In recent years the entire domestic retail apparel industry fell in love with body scanning as a panacea for finding best fitting garments.

In 2012, one technology company went so far as to invest millions of dollars placing hundreds of kiosk body scanners in major US malls. Using actual fit pattern data from multiple jeans manufacturers, their idea was that after getting a free body scan, the shopper’s ‘anonymous’ body shape would be matched up with existing jeans brands inventories in all the Mall’s stores, and they would get a printout of the exact styles and sizes and the name of the stores that best matched their shape. Today all the kiosks are gone as is an estimated $50 million of their Angel Investors’ money and several hundred kiosk employees’ jobs. Presumably all the proprietary pattern data that major jeans brands shared with them has been embargoed.

Another firm that is dominant in the sale of standard pattern making technology, believed that major Department Stores would invest in body scanners in their fitting rooms. Today, after years of trying, they have yet to sell a major chain.

In 2013 Microsoft developed what they called the Kinect for Windows for Clothing Sales Kiosk, but little has been heard about it since.


And while Internet apparel sales have boomed, it is common practice for savvy buyers to order 3 different sizes of a garment they want and return the two that don’t fit, even if they have had a body scan.


In today’s complex apparel business, body scanning is the ‘Tail Wagging the Dog’, in that it totally fails to address the continuing need for huge retail inventories that were bought months before and cannot be replenished to reflect actual sales. Why is that? Read on.

  Carroll (Bud) Robinson

Director and co-founder, AM4U Inc.

Why I came out of retirement at age 80 to help re-shore US apparel and textile jobs

The US Clean air and Clean water acts of the 1960’s and 70’s and our Environmental Protection Agency effectively forced the US textile industries to move to countries that cared more about gaining exports and jobs than they did about the health of their air, water or people.

And because these were low labor cost countries it was logical for our Apparel Manufacturing industry to join them to be close to the new source of their raw materials. The initial movement of these millions of jobs seemed worth the upheaval but it soon became apparent that these new stretched-out logistics could and did start to trump the gross profits of the fast changing business of fashion.

Much of these labor savings were eaten up by the need to invest in a totally new form of overhead now known as ‘Supply Chain Management’…but the real profit killer has been the need to commit to finished goods inventory up to 6 months before any new apparel is available to sell.

Now we have another problem called markdowns based on bad guesses about what would sell and the inability to replenish what did. Our projected gross profits of 50% quickly fell to 25% and we finally had to dump what we could not sell.

Then I met a man named Bill Grier who had invented a totally new way to dye, print, and imprint performance fabrics using NO WATER or caustic chemicals, and could delay sewing garments until they were already bought and paid for. I knew we could create a revolution.

So I invested in his company and came back to work as his Chief Marketing Officer. We formed Apparel Made for You Inc. (AM4U Inc.) in the Los Angeles California area, built our first proof of concept factory, and are already licensing this process which we call ‘Active Tunnel Infusion’

Check us out at http://www.am4u.com and watch our videos:


Categories: Uncategorized
  1. am4ucmo
    July 7, 2015 at 11:53 pm

    Reblogged this on Virtual Fashion Technology.

  1. July 7, 2015 at 11:53 pm

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