NEW YORK, NY / ACCESSWIRE / July 20, 2019 / Last month Overstock.com launched the world's largest omni-channel 3D and augmented reality (AR) experience in e-commerce, expanding its 3D models from its award-winning mobile apps to the mobile web and its desktop site.
Having been deep into AR since early 2016, Overstock partnered with Seek, an AR-industry leader specialized in web-based AR for e-commerce, to build this innovation. Whether you're using the mobile app or browsing online, Overstock shoppers can seamlessly view true-to-life size 3D renderings of thousands of products from top-selling categories like furniture, home goods, and decor on all platforms, viewing these products in their own homes with AR.
Pokemon Go was the first-time augmented reality was in the spotlight and it's the reason Overstock and Seek are here today with this announcement.
Last month, Pokemon Go developer, Niantic, released its hybrid follow-up to the game-Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. Using the phone as a "wand," users can cast spells, capture artifacts, and dispel lingering magical effects. Niantic quickly followed up with its acquisition of London-based AR studio, Sensible Objects, which is also behind the AR-tabletop game, Beasts of Balance and Amazon-Alexa's When In Rome.
In our conversation with the two companies, millennial internet attorney and cybersecurity thought-leader, Andrew Rossow, joined in, shedding his experience and immersion with AR technology since Sony first released the PlayStation Eye and Xbox Kinect. Rossow's major question to Overstock's Sumit Goyal was why the industry has taken so long to implement this technology.
"That's a very fair question," Goyal replied. "Technology has only, especially on mobile phones, begun to get sophisticated very recently. That is the reason why you don't see many websites doing the same thing, having the same kind of engagement and experiences on mobile. I think we were the industry leaders when we launched it on mobile apps. You see the same experience on mobile apps, but not on websites. With Seek's partnership, I take pride in saying we are among the first large dealer to have this experience on a mobile browser."
Jon Cheney, Seek's CEO, weighed in, pointing out that web AR is the solution e-commerce has been waiting for, but was too expensive to implement at scale until now."
For Rossow and other millennials, shopping for college, graduate school, or even your first-time apartment becomes much more interactive, and less-overwhelming.
"You will eventually be able to shop in AR for every single product on any website," Cheney told Grit Daily News. "That's what people are going to expect. For those who don't expect it, maybe some of those digital immigrants or later adopters, this application of augmented reality is so easy to see the value. It's so fast. I know what that looks like in my house now."
Rossow, who also teaches cybersecurity law at the University of Dayton School of Law in Ohio, emphasized the difference between "digital natives" and "digital immigrants."
Many "digital immigrants," according to the young attorney, do not understand the value mobile apps like Pokemon Go or Snapchat filters bring to the consumer market.
Both Goyal and Cheney agreed with that statement, believing the technology to provide a more complete and immersive experience for the average mobile device user. AR instills more trust in the transaction because consumers know what they are getting before it shows up at their front door.
While Overstock's partnership with Seek is primarily targeted at furniture shopping, other applications of AR will continue to be released over the next few years.
"Being able to try on pants, a shirt, or clothing altogether will be a huge frontier that is going to come," Cheney added. "People are going to be able to try things on and be as confident in purchasing that clothing as they would be in the store. That will change e-commerce and obviously continue to hurt your traditional physical retail in the process. AR can help instore traffic as well in different ways, and those that adapt will survive and thrive, while those that don't may be looking for new jobs."
Since Overstock's utilization of AR since 2017, the company has seen less returns, literally, with respect to purchases. "The data we have collected has shown us that those individuals who have experienced AR and are using that technology, are returning fewer items on average," Goyal emphasized.
Towards the end of our conversation, Rossow was curious on how GDPR and newly implemented data privacy laws come into play. For privacy enthusiasts, you can shop with ease, as Overstock and Seek have opted to stay clear from any potential liability.
"From both Overstock's and Seek's standpoint, when somebody is using the augmented reality features, there is no capture that takes place except on the person's device," Cheney stated. "That doesn't get streamed back. We don't see any imagery. We know nothing about that customer except what type of device they're on. We're looking at if they're on iOS, Android, or a desktop. What versions do you have? What browsers do you have installed? But we're not collecting any of that GDPR sensitive data, nor do we want to. What we're doing here is purely enabling that technology, so it works in the best way on that device."
SOURCE: MentionWorth Media
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