AR Enters Online Shopping In New Zealand

Category: 
AR Enters Online Shopping In New Zealand
November 26, 2018
© TOM LEE/STUFF
Now you test out fridges and TVs in your home while you shop online with the augmented reality app. Heathcote Appliances digital media specialist Adam Evans-McLeod tries it out.

 

Traipsing through stores trying to imagine how a new telly would look in your lounge could become a distant memory. 

 

Now, a few taps of your smartphone can conjure a fancy fridge into your kitchen or a telly in the lounge. 

 

Heathcote Appliances is the first to bring an augmented reality app - called Point and Place - into New Zealand shopping. 

 

But it may marks the start of virtual reality creeping into Kiwi shopping forever. 

© PAULA BRONSTEIN
It's like Pokemon Go but with TVs and dishwashers.

 

Explaining the concept of augmented reality (AR) draws plenty of baffled faces, Heathcote Appliances digital media specialist Adam Evans-McLeod said. 

 

Until he likens it to Pokemon Go.

 

The shopping app is similar to the phone game - but with TVs and coffee machines instead of cartoon pocket monsters. 

 

So far there's 40 Heathcote Appliances products available through the platform, but products will be added week by week. 

 

And it won't stop there. 

© TOM LEE/STUFF

 

The days of imagining how a coffee machine looks in your kitchen might be over.

 

The next step is wearables, so people can try on smart watches and headphones, Evans-McLeod said. 

 

When other retailers get on-board, it could allow people to check out lounge suites and cars - perhaps even try on clothes - through smartphones. 

 

"I would say people will be getting on board with this kind of stuff or they'll be left behind," Adam Evans-McLeod said. 

 

"The next five years, virtual reality is going to be in our shopping, probably your dining." 

 

It will help make online shopping a more personalised experience, Heathcote Appliances sales and marketing manager John Heathcote said. 

 

It might even quash the cliche let's-get-a-massive-telly argument. 

 

"This is stereotypical, but the guy wants the biggest TV he can get and his partner says no that's too big," Heathcote said. 

 

"[Now] they can go well this is what it would actually look like."

 

To begin with, the shopping platform might seem like a bit of window-shopping fun, Adam Evans-McLeod said. 

 

But it might not be long before shoppers can't imagine a world without. 

 

"In the coming years, from what i see, where the industry and stuff is going ... people will be able to put on a virtual headset and just walk around your store.

 

"What seemed like sci-fi 10 years ago - that's slowly starting to become reality." 

Related articles

VRrOOm Wechat