If you’ve kept an eye on technology trends over the past few years, you may be familiar with the concept of augmented reality (AR). Simply put, AR layers a computer-generated image in real time onto a user’s real world view. The purpose of AR is to create more meaningful experiences through increased engagement and user interaction.
When the technology first attempted to break into the mainstream a few years back, AR was regarded as a way to help connect print and digital. Using a mobile app, 3D models, video, and links to other relevant content could be integrated into printed materials. While many brands took a shot at integrating the technology, AR never seemed to reach its full potential.
Fast forward to present day and the recent viral popularity of Niantic’s Pokémon Go app, a location based AR mobile game. Considered one of the most popular mobile games in recent history, Pokémon Go has made it clear that AR may find its place in marketplace soon.
Here’s a look back at seven of the coolest examples of how augmented reality has been incorporated into print:
IKEA’s annual catalogue got an upgrade with the IKEA Catalogue app, which allows customers to see how 400+ IKEA product fit into their home. The mobile app allows shoppers to scan pages and see how furniture would look in their own rooms.
Back in 2011, Net-A-Porter created pop up storefronts in Paris, New York, London, Munich and Sydney. With the app, shoppers could scan the storefront signage to reveal videos from the runway, see product information, win prizes and more.
Vodka brand Absolut created a special campaign using an app and printed neckhangers around their bottles – consumers were able to scan the tags to see an interactive tour of the small Swedish Village where the vodka is made.
Starbucks released an AR app during the holiday season in 2011 that allowed customers to view a cute series of animations when scanning their coffee cups. AR took the brand’s iconic red holiday cups to another level, allowing for more interaction with their customers.
The May 2016 issue of The New Yorker featured the work of talented illustrator Christoph Niemann on the front and back covers of the magazine. Using the app, readers could bring the illustrations to life and explore the cityscape created by Niemann.
A combination of traditional pen and paper greeting cards and the modern day e-card, card company iGreet uses an app to bring their cards to life. Recipients can pull out their phone and use the iGreet app to view an animated version of their card.
A creative spin on another trendy item, the Quiver app brings colouring pages to life. Customers can print off colouring pages from the Quiver website, colour in the illustrations, and use the app to see and interact with their creations in 3D.