Snapchat’s AR offensive: AR mirrors, festival maps, and more
Snap’s augmented reality mirrors are designed to improve the retail shopping experience. Maps, Bitmojis, and Chats also received AR updates.
Snap unveiled an update on its AR Enterprise Services (ARES). The initiative provides AR tools and expertise to companies looking to use Snap’s technology in their own products. AR mirrors are the newest addition to the ARES portfolio.
These are screens that reflect the physical environment enriched with virtual elements. According to Snap, Men’s Wearhouse and Nike have already tested the technology. Coca-Cola is using it to develop an AR-enabled vending machine controlled by hand gestures.
Snap’s idea is not new. Just recently, AR try-on company Zero10 placed augmented reality mirrors in select Tommy Hilfiger stores.
Live Garment Transfer and Shopping Suite
Along with the AR Mirrors, Snap unveiled its Live Garment Transfer tool. It allows retailers to upload 3D assets to Lens Studio, making it easier for retailers to create AR assets.
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Also new is the Shopping Suite. Companies can access it through a front-end dashboard and back-end infrastructure. Here they create and manage AR assets, build AR experiences, organize 3D asset catalogs, and implement the Shopping Suite SDK.
Retailers see success through AR
The Shopping Suite also includes features including AR Try-On and 3D product visualization. Snap designed these features to help retailers increase sales by improving the shopping experience.
According to Snap, customers of sunglasses retailer Goodr were 81 percent more likely to add products to their carts after using AR Try-On. Clothing manufacturer Gobi Cashmere reported four times more conversions with the shopping suite features
Exclusive Snapchat features at festivals and concerts
In addition to the launch of AR Mirrors and Shopping Suite, Snap announced other innovations and partnerships. The social media company has partnered with Live Nation to bring AR features to 16 major festivals around the world. Attendees will have to access an AR compass and special Snapchat lenses, for example.
Snap is also partnering with Disguise, the market leader in live event visualization. This partnership is expected to result in AR content that will be used at various concerts.
Snap is also revamping its customizable Snapchat avatars. Currently, the Bitmojis look like cartoon characters but in the future they are expected to more closely resemble their real-life counterparts with realistic proportions, shading, and lighting.
New Bitmojis My AI features
Snap also plans to introduce more digital apparel for Bitmoji from popular brands. Following the release of a Converse collection last year, apparel inspired by famous Marvel characters has now been announced.
My AI is Snapchat’s ChatGPT-based chatbot. Snap is also giving it some new features. Snapchat users can add the chatbot to group chats and ask it for recommendations on Snapchat effects and filters or locations on Snap Map.
It is not yet known which, if any, of the new features will also be integrated into Snap Spectacles. The focus of the presentation was clearly on the Snapchat smartphone app. However, many innovations would also fit well with Snap Spectacles, such as the AR effects at concerts or the AR compass at festivals.
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