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Hachette Filipacchi’s Elle to launch multi-platform virtual personal stylist

January 5, 2011

HFMUSs Elle taps Alcatel-Lucent to create the virtual personal stylist concept

HFMUS's Elle taps Alcatel-Lucent to create the virtual personal stylist concept

Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S., publisher of magazines including Elle, has joined the ng Connect Program, a multi-industry initiative driving the development of next-generation broadband services based on Long Term Evolution and other enabling technologies.

With cross-platform content becoming more accessible through multiple channels and devices, HFMUS’s Elle is the first media brand to join the ng Connect Program, and it will work with other member companies to deepen the relationship with their readers by using 4G/LTE networks. HFMUS also tapped Alcatel-Lucent for the creation of a virtual personal stylist platform.

“HFMUS’ participation in the ng Connect partnership helps to keep our iconic brands such as Elle at the forefront of technology and innovation,” said Kate Berg, vice president of corporate communications at HFMUS, New York. “Alcatel-Lucent’s ng Connect Program aggregates the leading and diverse technology companies, creating a unique space to incubate and execute concepts such as mobile personal identity and mobile commerce as dominant trends.

“These services, provided by high-bandwidth networks, could transform the retail industry, in-store customer service, comparative shopping and how consumers shop in-store, at home or on-the-go,” she said.

“With cross-platform content becoming more accessible through multiple channels and devices, Elle can both deepen and broaden its relationship with its audience by utilizing 4G/LTE networks across phones, tablets, netbooks, laptops, etcetera.”

Virtual personal stylist
Elle is actively engaged with six other program members on a virtual personal stylist concept, which is being showcased for the first time in the Alcatel-Lucent booth #35469 at CES 2011, Jan. 6-9, in Las Vegas.

Media companies are at the forefront of tremendous change regarding content development and distribution thanks to the growing availability of devices offering content and the growing demand for immediacy for consumers.

Elle is a key player in this shift and recognizes the advantages of next-generation wireless networks for the publishing industry, according to Alcatel-Lucent.


Mobile Commerce Daily’s Dan Butcher interviewed Steve West, Ottawa, Canada-based vice president of emerging technology and media at Alcatel-Lucent. Here is what he had to say:

On which devices and platforms will the virtual personal stylist be accessible/compatible?
The virtual personal stylist is a solution concept from the ng Connect Program that will be launched at CES and demonstrated in the Alcatel-Lucent booth.

The concept demonstrates a completely innovative new approach to shopping.

After a consumer creates a personalized avatar, the avatar could be accessed on virtually any device with a high-speed internet connection, thanks to cloud computing.

Consumers can pull it up and virtually “try on” clothes on their laptops, on their mobile phones or in stores at interactive kiosks.

Using a full-length display in stores, retailers could help customers try on clothes using their avatar, eliminating time-consuming trips to the changing room.

Also, the concept can be used to test cosmetics at home, on-the-go and without messy applications at the in-store counter.

We are displaying this capability at CES using a Samsung 82-inch screen and a Samsung Galaxy Tab to control the avatar, trying on different clothes or having a video conference with a fashion expert.

Other devices will be able to access the service once it is deployed, based on manufacturer interest.

What is the target demographic?
The virtual personal stylist solution concept will change the way consumers shop and, in addition to assisting them, it also benefits retailers, brands, wireless carriers and device manufacturers with new business models and increased customer retention through a seamless and enhanced shopping experience.

What are the available payment mechanisms?
Payment could include standard options for in-store payment and online shopping, plus new payment models that leverage cloud computing and smart devices.

The payment mechanisms would be determined based on customer requirements.

Final Take
Alcatel-Lucent’s ng Connect Program

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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