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Size up your body using a Webcam

Tired of "guesstimating" sizes when shopping online? A German startup may have found a solution to stop you from buying ill-fitting clothes.

An example of body dimensions that UPcload can capture via Webcam. Screenshot by Jacqueline Seng/CNET Asia

Next time you shop online, you may be able to get the perfect fit -- without even having to try any clothes on.

A German startup called UPcload has developed a program that uses a Webcam to get accurate measurements of the body.

All you have to do is stand in front of your Webcam in four poses while the program scans you from head to toe, using a regular compact disc for calibration. The site claims its measurements are as accurate as those taken by a professional tailor.

UPcload joins a growing number of technologies aimed at letting customers "try on" clothing from their own homes. When we tested the system out for ourselves, most of UPcload's measurements were on target (with a margin of error of 1 or 2 inches).

If you're logged in to your profile while shopping, you'll be able to see a popup detailing how a piece of clothing will fit on different parts of your body -- as long as the e-tailer has integrated UPcload's technology.

It appears to be a win-win for both shoppers and e-tailers. It helps eliminate the possibility that you'll have to return a piece of clothing if it doesn't fit and you could also shop for family members or friends who share their UPcload measurements with you. As for the e-tailer, it reduces the cost of returns.

It's a pity that more online stores haven't adopted UPcload's technology yet (although it's still in talks with The North Face). We imagine an outfit like ShirtsMyWay could benefit from the system.

An example of the popup you'll see if a site has integrated UPcload technology. Screenshot by Jacqueline Seng/CNET Asia

(Source: Crave Asia)