Developers of a next-generation augmented reality platform says it will revolutionise the way that customers use digital to explore and interact with the products they are considering buying online.
Michael Valdsgaard, who previously led digital transformation at Ikea, has developed the new AR platform through his new London-based company, London Dynamics. The company offers a variety of AR applications for products in categories from wearables to furniture and customisable luxury items. Developers can also use the platform to create AR models for their own scenarios, complete with 3D models featuring different textures and lighting.
Valdsgaard, founder of London Dynamics, says that AR provides a way for retailers to bridge the gap between online and physical retailing, at a time when shops are closing and more sales are being made online. He predicts that the technology will bring higher levels of sales and brand loyalty and lower levels of returns.
“We are bringing online shopping back into the physical world by enabling that long awaited augmented reality revolution,” he said.
He added: “The evidence of massive disruption buffeting retailers in the UK can’t be denied. The Office of National Statistics reported that as much as 21% of retail sales were made online in December 2019, an increase of 6% while over 10,000 in-store retail jobs were cut in the first weeks of 2020 alone.
“Lasting change isn’t coming for retail, it’s already here, and AR has similarly arrived to offer a new and powerful way to respond to changing customer demographics and demands.”
Valdsgaard says he has decided to set up in the UK because of the opportunities the retail market can offer. “The UK has a credible claim as one of the largest and most sophisticated retail markets in the world,” he said. “This presents huge opportunity for retailers, and technologists like us. With access to the right talent, infrastructure and a digitally fluent and urban customer base, London has real potential to become the global launchpad for the most ambitious and exciting retail experiences in the world.”