Finally, we now live in a world where you can rent a really expensive device to tell you if your really expensive handbag is real or fake. Entrupy is a new app/camera combo that takes microscopic pictures of your beloved purse, then runs them through a computer that uses proprietary algorithms to determine if your bag was truly handcrafted by Italian artisans or if Coco Chanel is turning in her grave at the abomination lovingly slung on your shoulder.
According to their website, the very important machine was created by a team “with 8 degrees (including 2 Ph.Ds), decades of work experience, 4 patents, and thousands of hours of research and testing.” Those eight degrees don’t come cheap. The device has an initial fee of $299 USD. From there, you can buy monthly packages tailored to your specific needs. Authenticating five bags a month costs $99, $399 will get you 30, while $999 will let you sleep soundly knowing the 100 bags you got off eBay last week are totally legit.
Okay, okay, so the product is meant for businesses who would normally rely on human beings to spot the real from the fake. “For businesses that are growing, that’s not a scalable solution,” Entrupy co-founder Vidyuth Srinivasan tells Bloomberg. 160 businesses — including pawn shops, online retailers and wholesalers — have already signed up. “The technology works pretty well on everything except for diamonds and porcelain, because those are refractive and we use optical analysis,” says Srinivasan. “We’ve already tested it on auto parts, phones, chargers, headphones, jackets, shoes, even crude oil.”
For those of us who just want to know if that great deal on Kijiji is too good to be true, we’ll just have to keep wondering.