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5 Augmented Reality Trends for 2014

5 Augmented Reality Trends for 2014

Posted 07 January 2014 in Marketing Knowledge, Product Innovation by James Murray

Augmented reality trends for 2014 including Google Glass, Innovega iOptik, GoldRun apps and other AR predictions in retail

James Murray G+

Augmented Reality Accessories

By far the world's most anticipated augmented reality accessory is, of course, Google Glass - the hands-free AR wearable tipped to change the way we explore, remember and share our day-to-day lives. While the aim is to put Google Glass into the hands (or on to the faces) of a mass consumer audience, early financial predictions have suggested that the tech will be simply too expensive to become an everyday item for everyday people. That being said, more optimistic reports have suggested Google's newest gizmo could actually go on sale this April for an affordable $600.

While we all quietly speculate over Google Glass, wearables start-up Innovega have already taken the concept a step further, curating contact lenses that interact with full HD glasses, which will reportedly read the light from projectors fitted to glasses. While still in early stages of development, we've been told to expect a prototype at CES 2014, so we'll be keeping our eyes peeled.

In-Store Engagement

As customers increasingly demand a more interactive shopping environment, marketers and retailers are beginning to leverage AR technology to help boost in-store sales. HH Global have recently been developing an augmented reality solution for a high-end, world leading cosmetics brand - involving an AR mirror which allows the customer to see their new potential hair colour before purchasing. 

We can expect further in-store experiences based around AR in 2014, as consumers continue to make many offline purchases that add ease and convenience to shopping without completely consigning the future of retail to online commerce.

App Developments

H&M have released an augmented reality app, featuring clothing selections, via an app built on the GoldRun platform. App users simply select items and then capture them, snapping a picture allowing shoppers to instantly virtually try on outfits and receive discounts on clothes. We predict that brands will continue to develop apps based on the GoldRun platform, as it allows users to locate, interact and take photos of GPS-linked virtual objects positioned in the real world.

With its social media capabilities and aim to increase product sales while enhancing brand engagement, it surely won't be long before more and more retailers start to explore the possibilities of AR mobile apps.

Bedroom AR

While 2014 will bring more augmented reality into the high street shops, it will surely also begin to cause more of an impact to the purchase decisions of online shoppers. IKEA have announced that they'll be bringing their catalogue into shoppers' living rooms later this year, for Android and iOS users. By scanning selected pages in the printed catalogue, with the app, or by browsing the digital catalogues, users will be able to place furniture from the IKEA range into their own homes.

Luxury marketing firm and AR laboratory, Holition, are creating personalised interactive digital platforms to showcase products. Users are able to virtually try on good from their own homes such as jewellery. Holition brand director Lynne Murray told Mashable: "We are trying to push AR forward as a tool that realistically encourages the customer to believe in that product — to take ownership in understanding that product."

Live Event Innovation

We can expect further advances in AR technology at the various live events and trade shows taking place across the globe, not least the Augmented World Expo (word's largest AR event) in California. Chief Executives come together to discuss the future of AR and how it will being to effect retail, health, education, media, entertainment, travel and more in 2014.

CES 2014 will be showcasing the previously mentioned Innovega iOptik and we can expect many more forward-thinking designs to be presented, pushing forward AR developments and realities.