Amazon just launched the newest AR feature called AR View to its iSO app weeks prior to the Black Friday shopping fest. App users with iOS 11 installed on their iPhone 6S or later may use this feature to shop for home office products, decor, and electronics and virtually see how they look inside your home before buying. Customers may place, move, rotate, or overlay the selected item in live camera mode to check the 3D virtual effect from different angles.
Prior to Amazon’s AR bid, other retailers had experimented with virtual reality technology to offer customers a fresh shopping experience: Sephora, the makeup retailer, partnered with AR company ModiFace to let customers try on different makeups on its mobile app; Ikea introduced a similar app feature that allowed users to visualize what the selected furniture look like in their home settings.; and Wayfair’s “View in Room 3D” presents identical utilities. The mentioned parties all tooke advantage of Apple’s ARKit, which allows third-party developers to add AR functionalities to their mobile app, while Google’s ARCore is bringing similar features to Android users (It is currently only available on Pixel and Samsung S8 phones but Google is working to expand use to more devices).
The new feature and use of AR are clearly in the infancy since the AR View is reportedly having a few glitches. The virtual products hardly present a coherent nor real effect to their surroundings due to lack of image quality, and commanding them on the screen may not be as smooth as it appears in the promo video. Nevertheless, this pioneering effort has inherited Amazon’s continuing drive for convenient and intelligent life powered by frontier technologies. The voice-co system Alexa is reportedly capable of executing up to 15000 skills by vocal command via Alexa-carrying devices. The skills kit extends from dimming your light to calling you a Lyft ride. And Alexa is perfecting itself with AI technology to offer more personalized and more comprehensive assistance. Amazon first Prime Air delivery was made on Dec 17th, 2016 by unmanned aerial vehicle, one step closer from friction to reality.
While the question of practicality that people love to rave about new technology still holds, Amazon’s getting closer than its other retailer counterparts to revolutionize a shopping experience, given Amazon’s reach and popularity. Your AR View may look jumpy at the moment, the future surely doesn’t.