Being born in the 90s & growing up when I did was a wondrous experience. My whole generation has gotten to see technology evolve so fast! In my life (all 23 years of it!) I’ve seen the format on which music is listened to change from vinyl records to cassette tapes to music CDs to mp3s! I remember my family’s first computer, which had a hard drive of just few megabytes. I remember the first time we got a dial up internet connection, how slow & expensive it was, how we would get disconnected every time someone tried to call us up (remember, this is before cell phones were a thing!)
The internet has changed people’s lives & more importantly changed the way we consume everything, from news to media & even products. Shopping used to mean going to the few big departmental stores that we had & just being forced to pick up whatever was there. There was very little variety & if it was out of stock you could kiss the chance of every getting it goodbye! My mother always complained that when I was little there was hardly any variety of baby clothes or products available but today that has changed. I feel like the internet has always been very inclusive by nature. And with the dawn of ecommerce especially, there is something for everyone, whatever your needs / budget / shape / size / preference might be! I shop on the internet not just because it saves me time, it saves me from traffic jams (I live in Mumbai after all!), bad sales people & long queues. I can shop according to my schedule & have the things delivered to me. It’s incredibly empowering to me, as a consumer.
I had no way of guessing what the future of fashion would have been like! If you had told me in those days that in a decade or so I would be able to choose from hundreds of garments, shoes & more at any time of the day in a gadget smaller than a television remote; order & pay for it in a few taps of my finger & have it with me in just a couple of days, I would have thought you were crazy.
And yet, today it’s possible. Do you remember when phones were solely about calling & texting? And then they could play music, & have decent cameras too. And then there were apps, & everything changed. Smart phones are ubiquitous & affordable, telecom companies provide good 3G coverage. There’s an app for everything. Want to order food? There’s an app for it. Want to take a taxi? There’s an app for it. Want to pay bills? Guess what, there’s an app for that too! It’s a brave new world & myntra, one of India’s largest online shopping websites is going app-only. Mobile apps are the future & this is a very gutsy, exciting & pioneering move, somebody has to set the change right? My phone is always in my hand & this carrying a mall in my pocket wherever I go, I always have access to the latest fashion & can shop for any occasion (it also makes buying gifts really easy!) I cannot imagine my life without my phone & all the apps that help me with my day to day stuff.
Whatever my schedule might look like, I no longer have to stress about making time to shop for a special occasion. I don’t have to take hours (or an entire day) off my work just to go to some mall or the other to shop. I never have to come back disappointed because I didn’t find anything. Now shopping fits into my schedule completely, I can do it at any time, from anywhere. I have a good idea of my size, but what if I don’t like something? Well I can simply opt for a return… just request it on the app & my stuff will be picked up from home & I will be able to get my money back or exchange it for a different size. It literally cannot be more convenient than this!
With all this excitement I can’t help but wonder what the future of fashion & shopping will be a decade from now? What apps will be around to make our life even easier? In the words of David Bowie, “I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring!”