Gucci is taking steps to improve in-store accessibility for disabled consumers through a partnership with visual interpreting service Aira, in what could be a blueprint for the rest of luxury fashion to follow.
Through the Aira app, Gucci customers can now speak to remote visual interpreters, who will have live access to the back camera on the user’s smartphone. The interpreters will be able to describe the store layout and any potential barriers to access, as well as highlighting where customers can find certain product categories, fitting rooms or checkout counters. They will also be able to interact with in-store client advisors to describe recommended products and available colourways in detail. The interpreters will be provided with detailed store and product information in advance of these calls, and are specifically trained to assist customers through the shopping experience, says Gucci.
As of today, the partnership will roll out from pilot projects in the brand’s Miami Bal Harbour and Beverly Hills stores to an additional 22 US locations, free of charge to the blind and low-vision customers that it aims to support. Other countries could soon follow, as the brand says it plans to measure the take-up on Aira in the US, learn from any challenges that arise and recalibrate it for different markets.