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Augmented reality arrives on Amazon shopping app

09 November 2018 - 12:51 by David Aiken

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Amazon is preparing to up its game ahead of Black Friday by offering customers the opportunity to use augmented reality (AR) technology via its official mobile app.

Internet Retailing reports that the app now comes with a new feature known as AR View that makes it possible to view a wide variety of products overlaid virtually on the real world, before buying them via safe shopping online.

The idea is to make it easier to work out whether a particular product will fit in with a customer’s current home setup. This could include checking if a piece of furniture matches or seeing whether a TV or fridge will work well in the intended space that it would occupy if bought.

AR makes use of the built-in cameras found on every modern smartphone, along with the processing power of cutting edge devices. Just how smoothly this will function on different handsets remains to be seen and no doubt it will not be compatible with older gadgets.

Products which are available to view in AR can be rotated, resized and generally adjusted by users so that they get an accurate representation of the real-world look and feel.

With this technology it could be possible for sites like Amazon to make it even less likely that customers will head to bricks and mortar stores to see products in person before making a decision about whether or not to buy them. This is good news for e-commerce but bad news for the high street.

Other outlets with their own apps will no doubt follow suit now that Amazon has paved the way, although it seems unlikely that any of its rivals will be able to offer this type of service in time for Black Friday later this month.