SINGAPORE (Oct 8): Imagine that shopping for clothes is simple and convenient. You can choose whatever colour, fabric and style you want, at affordable prices. Imagine that you have access to an affordable expert stylist who is obsessed with making you look and feel good. Imagine that instead of mall hopping and queuing outside a fitting room, you can do it all from your home.

 In many ways, the future of shopping is here. Retailing has been in a challenging environment since the advent of the internet. Increasingly, shoppers are buying things by googling for them on their smartphones, or more likely, searching on e-commerce  giant Amazon.com’s site, where an algorithm helps give them an instant price comparison rather than spending a day in malls comparing prices or looking for the size, colour, fabric or style they like.  

Like cars or music, apparel too is now slowly undergoing its own shift from owning to sharing, or renting with a subscription model. More than a decade ago, the big shift in apparel towards fast fashion was led by retailers such as Sweden’s Hennes & Mauritz, or H&M, Spanish giant Inditex’s Zara and Japan’s Fast Retailing, which owns Uniqlo.

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