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eBay launches a mobile social shopping experience as it predicts the busiest online shopping day on Sunday 2 December

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On what is set to be the UK’s busiest online shopping weekend, eBay Social Shopping – the UK’s first interactive, socially powered shopping experience based around mobile – will land in London’s Covent Garden from Friday 30th November to Sunday 2nd December.

Harnessing the influencing power of social media, eBay Social Shopping will bring together product recommendations from social networks including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with eBay’s own unrivalled search data, to provide a live pulse of what the nations really wants this Christmas.

New research from Onepoll commissioned by eBay this month has found that almost half of all UK consumers (47%) now turn to friends for help when making shopping decisions, including via social media channels. And with a quarter of people (23%) planning to do Christmas shopping via smartphones and tablets, the relationship between social media and mobile shopping has never been stronger.

Open on what eBay predicts to be its busiest online shopping day, Sunday 2 December, when 6 million people are expected to log onto, visitors to eBay’s Christmas social shopping experience will be able to discover what the nation really wants this Christmas with a real-time barometer of the UK’s most talked about gifts and products, powered by Twitter (Hopefully its Pig Goes Pop, that’s what I want – Ed). They will also be able to see this year’s must-have toys come to life in the palm of your hand, with augmented reality technology, as well as find the perfect gadget for IT and tech lovers in 3D.

There will also be advice from virtual personal shoppers for gifting quandaries and dilemmas via Facebook – and it will all be driven by SmartPhone.

Ebay Social Shopping combines peer to peer recommendations and third wave mobile technologies with eBay’s unrivalled product selection as the UK’s leading online shopping destination predicts this year to be a socially inspired record-breaking mobile Christmas.

It will also showcase a host of ‘third wave’ technologies set to transform the retail industry over the next few years, offering customers an enhanced shopping experience. Ebay research shows that technologies such as augmented reality , image recognition and 3D technologies will present the UK’s largest retailers with a potential boost of £2.4bn for the industry as a whole by 2014.

Carrie Bienkowski, Head of Buyer Experience, explains: “By pairing views of social communities with eBay’s own vast selection of top Christmas gifts and mobile expertise we hope to give shoppers lots of inspiration and put a little bit of fun into Christmas shopping.

“Mobile technology is a catalyst for retail growth and is changing the way we shop. Consumers now carry a global showroom in their pocket and are increasingly as inclined to seek recommendations online and shop mobile as visit the high street. At eBay we expect 2012 to be our most successful mobile Christmas ever with around 30% of the most popular Christmas products being brought through a smartphone.”

Whether shoppers own a smartphone or not, they can come down to Covent Garden to experience eBay Social Shopping and use one of the tablets provided. Consumers can also enter into a prize draw to become an eBay Nectar Millionaire, celebrating the arrival of nectar points to the site. One lucky visitor will win a million nectar points (equivalent to £5,000) to help reduce the Christmas shopping bill.

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