Argos using augmented reality to help customers buy TVs

Argos has launched a new augmented reality (AR) feature within its iOS app, which allows customers to view an animated version of different TV models in their own homes via their smartphones. 

Users of the technology feature can virtually place full-scale, 3D models of TVs from brands such as Samsung, Hisense, Sony, Hitachi and LG in order to check what the products will look like in situ prior to making a purchase. The technology enables them to see what it will look like on a wall or unit.

Argos customers can also watch a video on the virtual TV screen using the AR tech, helping them further visualise how the product will function once in their home.

Argos said sales of giant-screen televisions have soared in recent months with sales of 65-inch TVs or more nearly doubling in the last 12 months. The World Cup starting in Russia last week, might have something to do with the sales pattern as electricals retailers often note that major sporting tournaments have an impact on TV sales.

Department store chain John Lewis said that in the week to 9 June, sales jumped 4.2% year-on-year, with the standout performance from its electricals arm which leapt up by 12.1%. It said the build-up to the World Cup helped drive up sales of TVs and TV stands.

Commenting on the new Argos AR feature, Matt Grabham, digital product manager at Argos, said: “As a digitally led retailer, it’s our goal to give customers the best possible shopping experience, whether in-store or online.

“We are really excited to launch this new version of the app, which will completely change how our customers buy TVs.”

In May Argos became the first UK retailer to launch AR-enabled Lego models through its mobile app, giving customers the chance to view more than 100 full scale, animated 3D versions of bestselling Lego toys. 

Other retailers and brands dabbling in AR technology include flatpack furniture specialist Ikea, Asda and L’Oreal.