Startup pouring old wine in new bottle will probably end up nowhere

There is nothing quite so useless, as doing with great efficiency, something that should not be done at all“…but we still do, and certain types of startup do as well. Not long time ago, we talked about how AI-powered personalized subscription e-commerce has been suddenly heating up in China and especially hoping to follow the successful step of StitchFix. The capital market actually has warmly embraced the idea, thus startups in the arena branched out several further categories, covering female fashion, men’s wear, kid’s apparel, or even pet food. See our blog link here

Most of these players remain to be run of the mill, often with the Artificial Intelligence title without groundbreaking substance.

Recently, another local startup Haomaiyi, founded in 2013, which has been proclaiming its specialty in avatar virtual fitting and AI fitting room technology, unexpectedly joined this race.


In April this year, it unveiled a woman fashion subscription e-commerce app. Soon in May, it built a Wechat mini-program to test the consumer market. And what Haomaiyi really differentiates with other competitors is just adding the zest of avatar virtual fitting tool to help you pick items into your box. Below comes the four simple steps.

This avatar virtual fitting tool requires users to input some key personal metrics to create, then all the pieces would be automatically put on the avatar once you select them.

But the trick sounds too familiar. More than two years ago, Haomaiyi already partnered with Alibaba and launched exact avatar virtual fitting campaign with some apparel brands on their Tmall’  flagship store, however, we have not seen the pilot projects moving onto full adoption so far. Two-dimensional anime-like figure in an apparel still faces the bottleneck to tell the true effect on a real human body.

Haomaiyi said this fashion subscription e-commerce is aiming to help women between the age 20~30 find their own style, but Haomaiyi perhaps is also searching its new way of monetizing the business model. This product is apparently the brainchild of such strategic thinking, which very likely will end up nowhere and should not be implemented at all in the very beginning.


By: Cecilia Wu