Daily Dose of iQ: 'Spylight' App Lets Users Shop TV, Movie Screens

Jul 09, 2015 — Juhi Jaferii

Today, we discovered an interesting second-screen called "Spylight," which allows you to buy what you see on a given TV show or movie.

Like Shazam, Spylight scans the audio of the show/movie to identify the scene and thereby prompt you to buy the clothes in that scene (see above promotional photo). Previous apps allow users to snap a photo of the desired item (e.g. Amazon Firefly and Neiman Marcus ‘Snap.Find.Shop’ apps), but Spylight works entirely on audio. Watching New Girl and you like what Jess is wearing? Just pull out your phone and Spylight the episode to find who made it, where you can get it and for how much.

Like Shazam, Spylight scans a show/movie's audio to identify the scene and clothes in that scene, so you can buy them online.

Most of my friends aren't necessarily fashion trendsetters, but they are good at copying trends. They also like dressing up but don’t like finding things to dress up in. I have Spylight to six people I know and three have downloaded it and searched for a specific item they had in mind.

Of course, like Shazam, Spylight is only as effective as the database it draws from. The Next Web reported in March that its database features “hundreds of TV shows and movies,” so I don’t think it’s super wide ranging. However, I think if it starts off with a few popular shows and does them well, there are a lot of individual outfits in there to develop a loyal user base. The amount of time it saves users will draw more people in as the company continues to build out its database.

The browsing mode of the app is interesting as well, as shown in the TNW article: You can just look through featured TV/movie characters’ outfits. In this sense, Spylight provides real-world context to the characters you're watching. You can define a look without shopping specific brands like Gap, American Eagle, etc. You are shopping personalities instead.

Spylight's browsing mode lets you look through featured characters' outfits. You're no longer shopping brands, but rather the "look" of a given character.

I can follow a character's entire "closet" on my phone. The amount of legwork that saves me in trying to identify a jacket I saw Ilana on Broad City wear is mind boggling. I would otherwise have to identify the season, the episode and describe the jacket's style, cut, color, etc. in a series of Google searches and online forum hunts (often sifting through dozens of comments) that could ultimately prove fruitless.

While Spylight may not be able to match every article of clothing from every show/movie I watch, I'm willing to forgive it when it can't. After all, it's saving me time and effort in the long run.

Topics: Retail Operations, Mobile Industry, e-Commerce, Retail Marketing

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