New reports give conflicting views on how AR will influence retail

Augmented reality (AR) will be majorly adopted in the retail sector - but not in the way many have predicted, according to a new report from ABI Research.

The analyst firm said that interest in AR will be driven by the retail workforce and online shoppers.

AR experiences can be of extreme use for online customers who are unable to interact with the physical products they plan to buy. For in-store employees, AR promises to deliver operational efficiencies and increase the quality of the service...

By James Bourne, 12 June 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Brands.

Advertising, search and commerce likely to drive AR expansion, says Strategy Analytics

Advertising, search and commerce are the three main segments that will drive the expansion of augmented reality (AR) beyond Snapchat and Pokemon Go, according to new research from Strategy Analytics.

The report was published by the analyst firm's Wireless Media Strategies (WMS) arm and titled 'Advertising, Commerce and Search Move Augmented Reality From Fun to Function'.

As the AR is still in its budding stage, Apple’s ARKit and Google S ARCore SDKs have recently allowed access to the...

By James Bourne, 30 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Brands.

Sotheby's International Realty expands real estate-focused AR app to Apple iOS

Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates has announced that its real estate focussed AR app is now available on Apple iOS devices, iPad and iPhone. 

The Curate by Sotheby's International Realty app was made available for download from the Google Play Store earlier in 2018. The roomy-powered mobile app brings a home’s virtual staging pictures from flat, two-dimensional perspectives into AR allowing home buyers to virtually furnish or decorate their homes prior to fixing a purchase...

By James Bourne, 25 May 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Brands.

VR social network vTime raises $7.6 million in series A funding round, aims to introduce AR version

Virtual reality (VR) social network vTime has secured $7.6 million in a series A funding round that will be invested in the R&D of a new augmented reality (AR) version of the app coming towards the end of 2018.

In addition, the funding will be utilised to speed up the worldwide growth of vTime as well as in product development.

Martin Kenwright, CEO of UK-based vTime, commented: "vTime offers users the most immersive and intuitive way to engage with others in VR from wherever they are. The...

By James Bourne, 17 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Applications, AR, Brands.

Google to use VR to help preserve endangered historical sites

Although they can often appear monolithic and unchanging, many of the world’s priceless historical sites are at risk of irreversible damage. Whether it is the Taj Mahal may be limiting the number of tourists allowed onto the site, or ISIS destroying world heritage sites in Syria, some of our most precious wonders are not as permanent as they may seem.

A partnership between Google’s non-profit...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 17 April 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

54% of VR headset owners block ads

The potential of VR for marketing has sparked a race among companies to find the best way to present users with branded content while they are immersed.

But new data from Global Web Index, who surveyed thousands of headset owning consumers, shows that a significant portion of users are not currently receptive to ads. The min use case for VR marketing would be in putting branded content in front of consumers.

Branded content is an increasing instrumental part of the marketer’s toolkit. The Global Web...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 29 March 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

Zara introducing AR displays to stores

Fashion chain Zara, which is owned by the world’s biggest clothing retailer Inditex, has announced the introduction of AR displays to some of its stores from April.

The technology will be introduced across 120 of the brand’s flagship stores and will allow consumers to view products and purchase them using their phones.

Customers who download the app can access a range of content by pointing their device at the specialised display surfaces. They will be able to see a virtual representation of a...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 14 March 2018, 0 comments. Categories: AR, Brands.

Walmart looking to bring VR to stores

Walmart’s technology incubator, Store No 8, has announced that it has purchased VR startup Spatialand. The acquisition is part of the retail giant’s strategy to bring VR experiences to its stores.

Spatialand is a software platform that helps developers create virtual experiences. The company will now design and build products for Walmart’s stores and website.

In a blog post on its website, Store No 8 said that its principal Katie Finnegan will serve as Spatialand’s interim chief...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 06 February 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Brands.

ABI Research: Hardware differentiation to become increasingly difficult

Differentiation between VR/AR headsets will begin to become more challenging for hardware developers as standards mature, according to ABI Research.

While early VR leaders like Google, Samsung, Oculus and HTC will continue to drive innovation over the coming years, but innovation between untethered or mobile-based headsets will begin to slow down.  

Standards (such as cross-platform support) are already beginning to emerge with organisations like the Khronos group and IEEE lending their support to a more...

By Colm Hebblethwaite, 25 January 2018, 0 comments. Categories: Brands, Ecosystems, Hardware, Platforms.