Startup molds artificial reality with jewelry for visual online shopping spree
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Startup molds artificial reality with jewelry for visual online shopping spree

Inova, a developer of an AR-based software for jewelers, is one of the first startups to take part in incubation program of the Israel Diamond Exchange

This hand with a ring shows how the artificial reality of Inova works -- helping make choosing online jewelry a more realistic experience (Artem Soundelzon)
This hand with a ring shows how the artificial reality of Inova works -- helping make choosing online jewelry a more realistic experience (Artem Soundelzon)

An Israeli startup, Inova, is seeking to use augmented reality to help consumers buy jewelry online in a more effective way.

The company, which is one of the first startups chosen to take part in the incubation program of the Israel Diamond Exchange, is developing augmented reality-based software that it hopes to sell to jewelers and diamond dealers.

Jewelers that use the software, will have the ability to show their customers how the jewelry they have selected will look on them. All customers have to do is take a picture of their hands, send it to the website, and they will get back an image of their hand with the ring.

The company was set up earlier this year by Artem Soundelzon and Genady Pisetskiy, who have been working on the technology for the past two years, and have signed an accord with the Israel Diamond Exchange in Ramat Gan on Monday, to join its Diamond Tech incubator.

Inova’s techology enables users to take pictures of their hand with a smartphone and then visualize how online jewelry would look on them (Artem Soundelzon)

For now, the software works only with hands, said Soundelzon by phone, but will eventually also show how earrings and necklaces and other jewelry look on people, he said.

The incubator was launched earlier this year to provide support and financing to startups that develop advanced technologies for the diamond industry, which suffers from low profitability. The initiative is part of a strategic plan of the diamond bourse to leverage Israeli tech entrepreneurship to boost the local diamond industry which has seen manufacturers move their production activities to countries like India, where salaries are lower.

Diamond Tech aims to work with early stage Israeli startups that are developing ideas for the industry: from ecommerce solutions to jewelry design, robotics and software that will make diamond production more cost efficient.

In February, the Israel Diamond Exchange, one of the three largest exchanges worldwide, launched a cryptocurrency in a bid to increase trade and make transactions more efficient and transparent. The exchange also launched a “get.diamonds” index, that serves as a reference and reflects daily market fluctuations.

The three main diamond exchanges worldwide are located in Mumbai, Antwerp and Ramat Gan, east of Tel Aviv.

Israeli exports of rough and polished diamonds amounted to some $7 billion in 2017.

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