Will AR change how people buy products from eyeglasses to wedding rings?
People keep a pair of eyeglasses for a long time — and hopefully keep their wedding rings for even longer. So, the try-on process for one of these products is the first step toward a long-term investment. In both these spaces, retailers recently announced they are using augmented reality (AR) to make the experience more convenient for customers.
Helzberg Diamonds has launched its Helzberg Virtual Ring Experience, which allows couples looking for the right wedding ring to virtually try on more than 100 varieties of product while visiting a store. The tech enables them to see what the rings would look like on their hands from multiple angles, according to a press release. A video demonstration of the Ring Experience shows a customer with her hand underneath a tablet built into a table that overlays a virtual ring onto an on-screen image of her hand. The customer is being guided through the try-on and selection process by an associate.
The Helzberg AR pilot is on-trend with other moves in the wedding space geared toward streamlining the entire, sometimes arduous and intimidating, process of wedding planning. For instance, e-commerce wedding registry Zola recently opened a New York City pop-up featuring a range of tech-enhanced wedding planning services and solutions such as invitation creation resources and customized 3-D cake topper printing.
In the eyewear space, Warby Parker recently upgraded its iPhone app to let customers superimpose the product onto their face in a live 3-D AR preview. This improves upon the brand’s earlier iteration of the app, which would offer recommendations on glasses to purchase based on facial recognition data.
Warby Parker co-founders and co-CEOs Dave Gilboa Neil Blumenthal told Wired that they have been waiting since they started the company for AR technology to catch up with their needs so they could offer the tool to their customers.
Mr. Blumenthal said they wanted a “true to life” feature before making use of AR. “Until we were able to have a one-to-one reference and have our glasses be true to scale and fit properly on somebody’s face, none of those tools were functional.”
- Helzberg Diamonds Launches New Augmented Reality Technology to Seamlessly Bridge the Online and In-Store Buying Experience – Helzberg Diamonds/PR Newswire
- Try On Your Next Pair of Glasses Using Just Your iPhone – Wired
- Warby Parker’s new app combines AR and face mapping so you can try on virtual glasses – The Verge
- Zola de-stresses the wedding planning experience for Millennials – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you expect AR-based try-on technology to become a bigger part of the consumer purchasing process? In which product categories do you think the technology shows the most promise?