Retailers Using AR and VR to Engage Customers

Published by , June 20, 2016 3:05 am

(TechnologyReview)  Retailers are seeing “virtual commerce” offered by VR and AR platforms as a way to address common shopping annoyances and engage consumers. Lowe’s has installed “Holoroom” kiosks, which apply virtual reality to home design, in 19 stores across the country and is preparing the launch of an augmented-reality app. In April, Ikea released a VR app focused on customizing virtual kitchens. Sephora’s mobile app and website have a feature that lets users apply virtual cosmetics to their faces. Last year, the North Face placed VR headsets loaded with footage of California’s Yosemite National Park and Utah’s Moab desert in some of its stores.
A survey conducted in February by Walker Sands, a digital marketing agency, found that 55 percent of consumers think virtual-reality applications will influence their buying decisions in some way. A third of consumers said they would be likely to shop more with e-commerce retailers that offer VR features.

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