Science

Ikea and Apple are launching 'the biggest AR-platform in the world'

Ikea and Apple are launching 'the biggest AR-platform in the world'

Ikea, the famous flat-pack furniture manufacturer, is working on an app that will digitally overlay true-to-size furniture using Apple's new ARKit technology. What? Did you think Apple and Ikea wanted to make an AR Sims game? The app depends on the AR features that will be coming out in iOS 11. Now, thanks to an interview with Ikea digital transformation manager Michael Valdsgaard at Di Digital, we're getting a little more information on the fruits of that partnership. The app will make it possible for customers to try furniture in their homes to see how it looks before actually buying it. He said Apple had "talked" to IKEA about an app that would inject 3D models of its goods onto an iOS device's screen, which could take most of the guesswork out of the furniture shopping experience.

"Ideally, you could place a sofa in your home using the app, and then click it in the shopping cart on the e-commerce site", said Valdsgaard. We have nearly 400 and we want to complement them in as many ways as possible through mobiles, social media, AR, and third-party e-merchants. The idea is that you'll be able to see an augmented reality layout of your home, to get a better sense of, say, what shade of leather chair looks good beside your enormous stuffed moose. Still, Valdsgaard notes that Ikea is a furniture store first, and expects its retail locations to remain the major source of its sales.




Ikea is planning to add all its new products to the app when they come out, meaning there shouldn't be a single bargain coffee table, bunk-bed or kitchen unit you can't envisage in an AR version of your own pad. Apparently Apple's AR tech is so precise that positioning will be accurate to the milimetre, with accurate sizing and lighting.


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