“Try before you buy” takes on a whole new meaning with Snap’s AR shopping Lenses.
During last week’s Snap Partner Summit, Snap Inc. announced a handful of new updates on the way to Snapchat that promise to take the uber-popular social media platform in bold new directions. This includes a handful of new AR (augmented reality) tools that could have a significant impact on the future of shopping.
One of the most exciting announcements from the event was Dress Up, a new destination within the Snapchat app dedicated specifically to AR fashion and shopping. Available now in Lens Explorer (coming soon to the AR Bar), Dress Up allows you to try on 3D models of real clothing and accessories from your home in real-time with no purchase required.
There’s also a new shopping section in the user profile where you can revisit products you’ve favorited, recently viewed, or added to your cart. According to Snap, any Lens uploaded to a company’s Brand Profile will be available in Dress Up.
Then there’s Camera Kit for AR Shopping. Using this neat SDK, retailers and brands can bring Snap’s AR shopping experience to their own platforms, allowing customers to try on different clothing and accessories from any app. Camera Kit for AR Shopping is compatible with both iOS and Android devices as well as conventional websites.
Puma is the first to take advantage of the technology, allowing customers to “slip-on” Puma sneakers before purchasing. Needless to say, the ability to bring Snap’s AR shopping technology to third-party platforms could attract a wide range of prospective clients.
The company doesn’t stop there, however. In addition to the aforementioned tools, Snap also announced a new 3D Asset Manager designed to simplify the AR shopping experience for retailers and brands. This web content management platform allows businesses to easily “request, approve, and optimize 3D models” for their real-world products.
This new platform is further bolstered by Snapt’s AR Image Processing technology, which uses a deep learning module to convert standard 2D images into 3D models viewable in AR. Partners simply upload photos of their product and the system takes care of all the heavy lifting.
Once processed, all they have to do is select from a variety of pre-built templates via a basic web interface. Users can then try on different clothing by simply snapping a selfie, at which point the digital clothing and/or accessories are automatically projected over their body.
Located in the Lens Web Builder, a tool for creating (AR) Lens campaigns in Ads Manager, these AR shopping templates allow businesses to create their own catalog-shopping Lenses for Snapchat with little to no knowledge of the AR development process.
The company is also introducing support for “surface” objects like furniture, handbags, and other items that are placed on the floor or countertops. AR shopping templates are available now in beta for select partners.
According to Snap, over 250 million Snapchatters have interacted with AR shopping lenses over 5 billion since January 2021. With demand for these next-gen shopping experiences at an all-time high, Snap is quickly establishing itself as the go-to platform among tech-savvy shoppers.
Image Credit: Snap, Inc.