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Shopify makes augmented reality available to merchants

By Dan Wilson September 20, 2018 - 3:38 pm

Ecommerce platform provider Shopify has revealed a new augmented reality (AR) feature that uses new technology from Apple to enhance how you display your products. A small group of Shopify merchants have already modeled their products through Shopify AR in anticipation of the Apple AR Quick Look launch.

At Shopify, we’re committed to making the incredible business potential unlocked by augmented reality more accessible for small businesses. That’s why we’ve built a services marketplace to help our merchants create 3D models of their products.

With Apple’s recent announcement of AR Quick Look, we can now enable these 3D models to be viewable in AR directly through the Safari browser on iOS 12 devices—without the need for a separate mobile app or a clunky headset.
– Shopify

As it stands, the AR content will only be usable on devices that are powered by iOS 12 but that includes most iPhones past the iPhone 5, the newer iPads and recent Macbooks too.

You can get a real taste of the product and how it can change how your present your items to shoppers in this video. It’s rather neat.

We know that tip-top imagery is vital to ecommerce and online retail. And there is also scope for video too, as we discussed in a recent article. But augmented reality offers a potentially transformational possibility to revolutionise selling online.

What is augmented reality?

One dictionary definition say it is “a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world, thus providing a composite view.” In ecommerce terms it is a technology that offers merchants the chance to create 3D imagery that shoppers can use to observe and view the products for sale from all sides.

A quick view of the video above gives a very easy justification of how it could be used successfully by merchants. The question is whether gathering the imagery and generating the AR content really is as staggeringly easy as the video suggests. If so, this could be a game changer for Shopify merchants.

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