Blippar Announces AR Ad Unit & Visual Search For Cars

What Happened
Augmented reality solution provider Blippar announced two big additions to its platform. First up, the company is ready to launch what it claims to be “the first AR digital ad unit” that doesn’t require an app. This new ad product, named Augmented Reality Digital Placement (ARDP), will work with standard rich media banner ad units. Upon clicking, it would open a web-view window that, after users grant permission to access the camera, can superimpose ad creatives over the environment that the camera captures, and is viewable in 360-degree view. The creatives can be 3D models or static cut-outs from a 360-degree video. 

Secondly, Blippar is adding a “Shazam-for-cars” feature to its free mobile app that allows users to identify the make, model, and year of any U.S. car made since 2000 simply by pointing their camera at the car. The app will then surface relevant content such as average customer rating, price, a 360-degree view of the car’s interior. Blippar says it has achieved over 97.7% accuracy in automotive recognition, making it the highest in the industry. With this launch, the company is releasing a Car Recognition API that is available globally for companies to license and integrate into their own apps and products.

What Brands Need To Do
Although the AR experience delivered by ARDP seems to be pretty rough and limited in functions according to Blippar’s demo video, it is nevertheless an exciting development that marks the commence of the AR advertising arm’s race. The fact that this AR experience doesn’t require any specific app to run is obviously a plus for the potential reach of this ad unit. Mobile-based AR is a great way for brands to deliver interactive content and feature to drive active engagement and showcase products, and AR ads would be a great tool for brands looking to enhance their mobile ad experience.

For auto brands, the car-recognition feature and its API should be a great tool to transform any ordinary environment into a virtual showroom. It would be a great tool for event activations, pop-up promotions, and engaging car enthusiasts. According to CEO Rish Mitra, the company is working to expand this visual search feature to cover more sectors, with fashion being its next target.

For more information on how brands may tap into the rapid development in AR to create engaging customer experiences, please check out the Advanced Interfaces section of our Outlook 2017.


Sources: MarTech Today & TechCrunch

Featured image courtesy of Blippar

Blippar Transforms London’s Covent Garden Into An AR-Enhanced Shopping Destination

What Happened
London-based augmented reality startup Blippar has transformed the city’s popular shopping destination Covent Garden into the site for an AR-enhanced physical retail experience. Partnered with over 140 stores and restaurants in Covent Garden, Blippar created an interactive map of Covent Garden that shoppers can use to navigate the shopping district to unlock various discounts and rewards from retailers, see the tags on select items in-store, and receive contextual fashion and beauty tips from Hearst Magazine’s fashion editors.

In addition to an interactive shopping experience, Blippar will be also hosting AR-powered special holiday events to draw in shoppers. Planned events include a digital hunt to find eight hidden reindeer for a daily prize, an AR Christmas tree and Santa experience that unlocks exclusive rewards, and Blippable stickers on restaurant and shop windows that reveal special offers.

What Brands Should Do
This initiative is a great showcase of the immense potential that AR technologies can transform brick-and-mortar retail. In a similar manner, French department store chain Galeries Lafayette is using mobile-powered AR to create a unique in-store narrative to lure in holiday shoppers. With more and more consumers now shopping with their smartphones, brick-and-mortar retailers need to start exploring ways to use augmented reality to create a next-level shopping experience. Beyond retail, AR can be a great way for customers to envision your products in their lives and to launch interactive digital experiences from signage or product packaging.

The Lab has extensive experience working with retail, beauty, and CPG clients to create and implement digitally-enhanced experiences for their stores. Our recent work with NYX Cosmetics incorporated the brand’s social assets into its in-store experience and offered an innovative take on sampling with a digital beauty bar. Please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland ([email protected]) if you’d like to learn more about how to develop a mobile-driven retail strategy that bridges the gap between physical and digital shopping experience.


Source: PSFK

Lead image courtesy of promotional images from Blippar