Do you think that the world needs you twice? Professional photographer Jens made 400 duplicates of himself and called it the #GIJENS
Well for you it is possible as well! During my search I found a very special form of customization. You can duplicate yourself and make yourself even more epic. I am talking about the website http://www.myfaceonafigure.com/ and about another website which is called: shapify.me I do review two ideas because the second is a very interesting new technology which can be used in the field of customization.
This website provides consumers with a toolbox to make it easy to configurate your action figure. You can start configurating you action figure by choosing skin color, body size and clothing. The skin colors you can choose is black or white. there are four sizes too choose from, two for male figures, one for women and one size for children. The website provides eight categories of clothing. Within these eight categories there are four types of action figures.
For this product there is not really a necessity for a need based system. The product is simple and fun and the customization proces is already quite straightforward. Although tis might make it a bit a limited for people who want to have the best match. For example it is possible to have two different skin colors (black and white) but that could be not really close to the reality. The website has nice images and it is very good visible to see how the product looks like but there is one drawback. This might be quite important for potential customers: there is no digital prototype of the product with your own face on it. Although it is possible to see testimonials of consumers who purchased their own action figure.
While looking at making yourself a relatively new technique came to my mind. 3D printing is another great way to deliver a customized product. This technique has become widely available and is being used already to make prototypes. It is possible to have yourself printed with this technique already. The website Shapify.me is one of the easiest and cheapest ways of doing it. It needs you to scan yourself with a microsoft Kinect camera by following a simple 3-steps. After you have scanned yourself you can see a digital 3D image of yourself. The only thing that is left is clicking on a button to print the 3D version of yourself.
These site are mainly for fun and I do not expect people wanting to have very sophisticated models but regardless of that they could bot make use of a community where people can show each other ideas, and creations. The article about peer input could be very helpful for these firms because it can greatly enhance the experience of the consumers.
To review the various examples of customization I have used the following articles:
Principles for User Design of Customized Products By: Taylor Randall, Christian Terwiesch and Karl T. Ulrich
Complementing Mass Customization Toolkits with User Communities: How Peer Input Improves Customer Self-Design By: Nikolaus Franke, Peter Keinz, and Martin Schreier