It’s an exciting time for augmented reality. With new AR platforms starting from the biggest names in technology over the last few months, including Apple’s ARKitand Google’s ARCore, retailers such as Ikea, Wayfair, and Anthropologie have already released ARKit-powered programs, opening the door to consumer acceptance of AR as viable retail technologies.
But across the board, early AR shopping apps still leave much to be wanted. Sure, it’s useful to use AR to almost place a new seat, side table, work of art or sectional into a space. But unless you’re starting with an empty room, physical objects can get in the way of a true sense of presence and gratifying experience.
Input diminished reality — another “reality” — which promises to change that. With DR, users will be able to digitally remove undesirable, inanimate items from their physical environment, to find a much more realistic perspective of how potential purchases will fit within the context of their own lives.
So, just what is DR, and also what exactly does it mean for the future of retail and outside?
While not new, DR is still relatively unknown. In other words, diminished truth is the conceptual opposite of augmented reality. AR permits you to fortify, or include virtual content to the way you perceive physical universe. On the flip side, DR lets you erase physical content from a real-world scene recorded via a tablet or telephone camera.
More probable than not, you have already been subjected to DR. It is, by way of instance, a well-established tactic employed in movie editing, to remove things like wires and harnesses that celebrities wear when filming stunts or action scenes. It contributes to suspension of disbelief by eliminating visual noise and also erasing traces of reality.
Why retailers need diminished reality to get the maximum out of AR
This is where it gets interesting. Pairing DR with AR will open the door for an entirely new degree of real life manipulation, blurring the lines between where bodily fact ends and (augmented) reality starts.
It is sure that early adopters of ARKit for retail for example Wayfair, Ikea, and Anthropologie, are seeing promising results without DR, but when the novelty wears off and the desire for true existence kicks in, consumers won’t undermine. They will want to see house furnishings since they will really look in a room, without the sound of everything that’s already in the area.
As an example, if I wish to find out what a brand new sectional might look like in an present room with any of those recently launched ARKit programs, I have to either physically remove the existing furniture from the area, or layer 3D goods in addition to them. With DR, starting the redesign process in an “empty” area becomes as simple as holding up your tablet or smartphonecomputer, tracing unwanted objects as they appear onscreen, and clicking to eliminate it.
Have a look at this video to obtain an idea about what my company is producing the DR encounter like, specifically in the context of shopping for home furnishings.
But it isn’t about just removing objects. As you can see in the video, instead of leaving a gaping black hole or sterile place in the place where a physical item once was, DR technologies is advancing to the point where it could recognize the qualities of the floor or walls around the object, and fill in the “empty” space so. While the technology isn’t completely foolproof however, a few DR platforms can go so far as to replicate a complex pattern onto a rug, or fill in bricks on a brick wall, once objects in the surrounding space have been eliminated.
DR isn’t away. Within the next 12-18 months, we can expect to see DR at play in AR shopping scenarios, as existing AR apps are updated to incorporate this technology, and much more retailers follow suit.
In Regards to AR, presence matters
The in-context visualization capabilities enabled by ARKit programs are powerful and persuasive, but AR alone doesn’t produce the flawless sense of presence that will power the future of the retail client encounter. DR is simply one of a couple of complementary technologies that will establish a much better sense of presence and usefulness when purchasing in AR.
Sure, it will be awhile until you’re in a position to eliminate your in-laws, former spouse or a puppy out of a scene, unless it’s possibly an extremely idle puppy. Kinetic and living items can not be readily removed. However, when it comes to AR for static objects — furniture, home furnishings and home decor — with no DR, the encounter is like a taco with no shell or chips without queso. Who wants that? Nobody.