Because comparing high-end designer items to their lower-priced mass market counterparts is a never-ending source of amusement, now there's an app for that, obviously. The mobile game Fashion Eye (free in the iTunes store) asks players to compare clothing items and guess which is more expensive. Players compete with each other for virtual "lattes," which function as currency within the game, and $50 gift cards (to win a gift card, you have to play over 100 rounds for at least ten days straight).
Fashion Eye was reportedly developed by an Israeli startup called Fashioholic, which aims to create so-called "serious games" (a category which refers to games with a primary purpose other than entertainment) that act as a marketing platform for fashion brands. Miss Selfridge, for example, popped up repeatedly when I played, leading me to wonder whether the British high street retailer had paid for placement.
But is Fashion Eye an effective way to advertise a brand? Although repetition is a powerful ad technique and many mass market retailers would presumably consider it a boon to have their styles linked to high-end labels, the gameplay itself implies it's possible, even desirable, to be able to consistently distinguish between designer items and fast fashion copycats. Will that really convert gamers into shoppers?