Saturday, July 14, 2012

Augmented reality and eCommerce

What is augmented reality, and why does it matter?

Irina Strilets says:

"Augmented reality can enrich the overall content of an e-commerce website, which will increase a customer’s engagement and promote the company’s brand identity". I tend to agree, and from my epistomological perspective, engagement brings to mind gamification. 

So while the experts generally agree augmented reality will be an influence in eCommerce, how this unfolds is anyone's guess. 

ECommerce by definition is virtual, so strictly speaking, I don't see how eCommerce can be influenced by augmented reality... except for the crossover point when you leave the computerized virtual world to go see a therapist in the real world, someone you found on an eCommerce site. Augmented reality might show you some interesting trivia about the area where the therapist has the office, that's about it. 

It seems to me that if augmented reality and gamification are viewed as a spectrum, then the concept that applies to eCommerce the most is skewed towards gamification, not augmented reality.

If anyone can think of a valid eCommerce functionality that augmented reality would have in the real world cross-over space from virtual reality to reality, please enlighten me, I'd love to know. Thanks... 

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