Snapchat revealed a number of new efforts centered on utilizing its augmented reality technology to help with online shopping at its recent Partner Summit. Most notably, the company launched a new “Dress Up” in-app feature. It includes AR fashion and virtual try-on experiences, as well as tools that will allow retailers to integrate with Snapchat’s shopping technology within their own websites and apps, among other updates designed to make AR asset creation easier.
Over the last year, the business has made progress with AR-powered e-commerce, giving its vision-based “Scan” function a more prominent position within the Camera part of the app, and enhancing it with commerce features. Snap also added support for real-time pricing and product data to their AR shopping listings earlier in 2022.
According to Snap, these enhancements have resulted in increased consumer engagement with AR commerce. More than 250 million Snapchat users have used AR shopping Lenses more than 5 billion times since January 2021. Snap said that with Camera Kit for AR Shopping, it will put AR technology in the hands of merchants by allowing them to use Snap’s AR try-on technology within their own mobile apps and websites.
This augmented reality SDK (software development kit) will integrate catalog-powered shopping lenses into retailer product pages, allowing shoppers to virtually try on apparel, accessories, shoes, and other items. The feature is now only available on iOS and Android apps, but Snap promises that it will be available on websites “soon.”
Puma will be the company’s first global partner to deploy the technology, allowing customers to digitally try on its footwear via the Camera Kit integration. Users can simply point their phone at their feet to see the sneakers they’re contemplating emerge in an augmented reality image.
Retailers will also get access to a new AR Image Processing technology in Snap’s 3D asset management, which, according to Snap, will make creating augmented reality shopping experiences easier and faster. Brands will be able to select their product SKUs and then turn them into Shopping Lenses via a web interface, allowing them to generate new Lenses in seconds and at no additional cost.
In order to do so, partners will submit current product imagery for the SKUs they offer, which Snap’s technology will then process using a deep-learning module to turn into AR Image assets. This method employs artificial intelligence to separate the garment from the brand’s model photography, effectively converting normal photos into AR assets. These assets can then be utilized to construct new try-on Lenses for shoppers who want to shoot a full-body selfie at home.
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Photo via Snapchat