Finding the perfect pair of shoes can be a challenge. Replacing your favorite pair can be even harder. Due to the unique anatomy of everyone’s feet, standard shoe sizes don’t mean much in terms of comfort.
That’s why a startup called Neatsy AI is using machine learning to help people find comfortable footwear. It uses the iPhone’s FaceID camera to gather 3D scans of the user’s foot and then harnesses the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to predict which shoes would be a good match. Once users find their ideal shoe, the Neatsy app shows them where to buy it.
Finding a Better Fit
Neatsy AI was founded back in 2019 and has made significant progress since then. TechCrunch reports that it raised $400,000 in pre-seed funding to help launch its iOS app. It is now available for some users in the U.S., U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Canada, and Russia. Neatsy is planning to move forward from its soft launch to an official launch in December.
The app itself is fairly simple and works well for users with a compatible iPhone. Of course, the obvious issue is that it doesn’t work on older phones or Android devices without Apple’s FaceID camera.
For those who can use it, Neatsy’s app offers clear instructions and a straightforward foot measuring process. It guides users through the steps before providing an on-screen outline of how to scan their feet. Users need to wear a solid-colored pair of socks to complete the scan. Once it is done, the Neatsy app saves the results and uses them for all future comparisons.
From there, the app’s integrated AI analyzes the 3D scan to find the perfect shoe match. Neatsy has built a database of shoes from popular brands like Nike, Puma, Jordan, and Adidas by scanning their insoles. The algorithm also accounts for what material the shoes are made of.
Once the analysis is complete, the Neatsy app rates each pair with a numerical fit score.
Although Neatsy’s AI-driven foot scanning tool is designed for consumers, it also has the potential to revolutionize the e-commerce world. The startup plans to pitch its technology to retailers and online store owners.
Neatsy’s CEO and founder, Artem Semyanov, says, “Speaking long term we think that our future is B2B and all e-commerce shops would eventually have a fitting tech, we bet it will be ours. It will be the same as having a credit card payment integration in your online shop.”
Meanwhile, the technology could help retailers cut back on costs associated with customer returns. Semyanov notes, “All in all, shoe e-commerce returns vary among products and shops between 30 and 50 percent. The most common reasons for this category are fit and size mismatch.”
By addressing the problem of poor fit at the root, Neatsy’s solution helps retailers avoid costly returns by getting customers the right size in the first place.
This is a hot technology right now and will only become more in-demand as e-commerce continues to grow. Keep an eye on Neatsy AI and its competitors as they aim to redefine the future of retail.