With virtual reality and augmented reality slowly breaking into the mainstream and making strides in technological advancement, many e-commerce experts are predicting that these technologies will have a profound impact on the way people shop online. In fact, AR is set to change our world completely, as it’s only a matter of time before a product similar to Google Glasses comes along and has the whole world seeing things from a new perspective. In the meantime, here are four ways augmented reality will be changing e-commerce as we know it within the next decade.
1. Product “Holograms”
It won’t be long before you’ll be able to view 3D holograms of products in your living room before making a purchase online. Amazon’s augmented reality feature “AR View” is already a thing, allowing customers to view three-dimensional images of select products using the Amazon App. These images aren’t technically true holograms – they’re actually just accurately sized projections of the product image portrayed through the user’s smartphone camera. For example, you can point your smartphone’s camera at the kitchen and see how a new chair and table set is going to look. The app even lets you rotate the item and adjust its placement within AR view.
2. In-Home Storefronts
While Amazon’s AR view is certainly one of the first implementation of AR in e-commerce, in the near future we will probably have the ability to browse virtual storefronts and even entire shopping malls from the comfort of home. Imagine, your wall turned into an endless shelf that you can swipe left and right. You’ll even be able to grab specific items off the shelf and move them around in your living room to get a better view from every angle.
3. Virtual Customer Service
One of the biggest differences that still exist between e-commerce and in-store shopping is the ability to speak to a customer service representative face-to-face. That could change very soon when companies let you chat with a virtual representation of an agent via AR. This will add a more personalized and humanized touch to customer service systems that have traditionally consisted of nothing more than typing and phone conversations.
4. The Upcoming Wave Of AR Products
Finally, another way AR is set to revolutionize e-commerce is through the number of AR products and upsells that will be flooding the market. From games to virtual interior decor, there’s really no limit to the kinds of products and inventions that might be facilitated with futuristic AR technology. This represents not only another area for consumers to explore but also an entirely new niche for entrepreneurs to capitalize on.
AR Will Be Bigger Than VR
Virtual reality might seem more exciting than augmented reality in that it will be more immersive, but because of the fact that VR completely segments the user’s perception from reality, it will have fewer use cases in everyday life. While VR will be huge for gaming and virtual travel, AR is going to be everywhere you turn whether at home or in public.
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