By Sherlenne Tejerero
Over the last two decades, technology has been slowly taking over our lives and is constantly evolving. Set off of new devices sometimes leads to a new technological paradigm. Most of our time is influenced by gadgets.
What is augmented reality (AR)?
Many still don’t realize that AR has been with us for years already before sprouting to what it is today. Augmented reality, a term coined by Tom Claudell in 1990, is the interaction of superimposed digital images or information over what you’re seeing in the real world and, when executed at its best, you’ll be able to interact with all of it in a very realistic way.
According to Huffington Post, AR and VR have exploded for $1.1 billion in investments this year. By 2020, it is expected to generate $120 billion in revenue, as predicted by DigiCapital. AR/VR created too much hype as it continues to increase.
These technologies will revolutionize computer interaction and make it more intuitive and collaborative than it is today. Scientists currently take AR forward keeping in mind the context of commercial use, as they explore its possible application on various industries.
AR in fashion
While AR is commonly used in gaming, the fashion and retail industries were some of the first to use the technology. Though some are skeptical, many believe that AR has the potential to enhance both ends of the industry, that they call it the “new medium of human experience”.
Fashion designer Kailu Guan has seen such potential. She has been using this technology to allow her clothing to tell richly woven stories inspired by a Japanese mountain town. In her thesis collection, she translated her patterns into computer code that her AR app could read and transform into video, sound, and 3D shapes using screen printing.
New Opportunity for Fashion Brands
Experimenting with tech is crucial for fashion brands, as they seeking to fathom their consumers and find ways to fit in this new milieu. Many brands see AR and VR as a powerful new digital growth channel, and they are already partnering with AR studios to create interactive retail experience for their consumers.
Top fashion retail brands such as Topshop partnered with innovative technology agency Inition to create a complete VR world of the Topshop Unique show for London Fashion Week FW14. It allows user to select a garment off the rack without having to try it on physically and seeing the front and back of the piece.
In retail, fashion and trends come and go quickly. Today’s fashion is kicking up a notch and is about more than looking chic. As a new medium, AR has opened an opportunity for fashion brands to enhance customer engagement and focus more on delivering satisfaction through a re-designed customer experience.
In a nutshell
As consumers become more demanding and digital-savvy, modern-day fashion retailers could adapt this emerging platform to extend their digital storefronts beyond just websites and mobile apps. Retailers will continue to seek new ways to keep shoppers engaged and excited with their brand by curating memorable interactions at every touch point.
As AR becomes more powerful, it opens up more ways for consumers to interact with fashion brands. This technology helps retailers to deliver a unique and immersive customer experience.