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Comment: I'm bringing my home to your shop

Over the last 15 years we have seen the pace of innovation increase, extending the boundaries of the retail experience beyond a trip to the shops. Ecommerce revolutionised home shopping, and the arrival of the smartphone, tablets and faster networks started to extend the opportunity to shop.

Comparison shopping on the move has already got to the point where US consumers scan barcodes and see where they can get a cheaper deal, while showrooming as its known is now a major consumer behavioural change that some analysts say impacts nearly half of US retail.

Shopping at home has also gone through a dramatic change with the arrival of click & collect and a range of other services that blend together the different channels of shopping from the physical world and the digital one. And of course that’s before you add augmented reality that allows you to be at home and look at the furniture from a catalogue and see it in your room.

At this year's RBTE, which takes place at London's Olympia between 10-11 March, TheFutureStore.Today will take that one stage further. A new augmented experience product called DigitalBridge is going to show visitors how to bring their home into a retail store. Augmented reality apps can only take you so far, but DigitalBridge allows you to see all kinds of changes to your space from changing the paint or wallpaper on the walls to choosing where a picture might go and a whole lot more.

I spoke to Digital Bridge founder and CEO David Levine, who said: "This technology is about two things: firstly it's about bridging the imagination gap. If you are anything like me then it's really hard to imagine what the tiny swatch of wallpaper or sample paint pot will look like when it actually goes into your room.

"Secondly it's about making it as easy as possible for anybody to make better choices about home decoration. Home decoration is one of the few things that you can't just take back to the shop if you are not happy with the result."

At Olympia you are going to be able to play with this technology and we are going to also have some interior designers on hand so you can bring a picture of your room into TheFutureStore.Today and see what impact different colours, textures and furniture have on the look of your space.

This is an insight into how the retail for home furnishings and decoration and interior design will change over the next few years. This is just one of the innovations we are demonstrating. 

Look out for more news next week about what else will be at the TheFutureStore.Today, and how you can bring your living room, bedroom or kitchen to London's Olympia, on stand 873.

To find out more about this programme keep your eye on the Essential Retail & RBTE websites over the next six weeks. You can see the video and get involved with the project here.