How Lowe’s is Using Augmented Reality to Blow Shoppers’ Minds
Lowe’s recently announced plans to release Lowe’s Vision, an app for Tango (Google’s 3D smartphone platform) that allows customers to visualize how furnishings and home accessories will look in their households. Users of the app will be able to accurately take measurements as well as browse a filtered selection of Lowe’s home-improvement products accordingly, all through the magic of augmented reality.
This is directly in line with the trend of major retailers utilizing augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) in order to create a better shopping experience for consumers who are used to having all of the world’s options (literally) at their fingertips. While seemingly interchangeable, there are differences between AR and VR: augmented reality enhances the shopper’s reality by digitally adding information and data, whereas virtual reality is a purely immersive, experiential technology.
Lowe’s also previously launched Holoroom in select stores, which allowed customers to use VR headsets to experience holographic virtual remodels of bathrooms and kitchens. This is evidently becoming a popular initiative in the home and housewares domain, as we recently got to experience virtual kitchens at IKEA’s King St. West pop-up shop as well.
Indeed, Lowe’s isn’t the first retailer to implement AR/VR in its stores, as several brands and retailers have tested the virtual waters over the past few years. Fashion conglomerates Ralph Lauren and Rebecca Minkoff recently revamped the dreaded fitting room experience through the use of AR. “Connected” Rebecca Minkoff boutiques experienced a 50% increase in sales after implementing “Magic Mirrors.” Ralph Lauren quickly followed suite and teamed up with innovative tech start-up, Oak Labs to integrate the all-seeing, all-knowing mirrors into their fitting rooms as well. Essentially, the mirrors gave shoppers an abundance of options from choosing what pieces to try on (brought in by an associate equipped with an iPad) to different light settings to mitigate buyer’s remorse. Any items left unpurchased were saved straight to the user’s phone in an effort to make it easier to browse later online.
Perhaps the simplest and easiest-to-implement versions of AR are the various options for customers to try on products through their screens, from the comfort of their own homes. From beauty retailer Sephora’s, “Virtual Artist” to spectacle supplier Clearly’s, “Try On View” and even our own Hubba user, Virtual Hairstyler. Users need only to upload an image of themselves and just like that, the possibilities are endless.
As outlandish as AR/VR may seem, these are arguably some of the most impressive ways to strengthen your consumer’s in-store shopping experience, currently trending in the retail sphere.
Check out other Hubba examples of brands implementing AR/VR by clicking below!