Sephora Launches ‘World-First’ 3D Augmented Reality Mirror

Beauty retailer Sephora has launched an augmented reality mirror in its Milan Store that can simulate cosmetics on a user’s face in both real-time and 3D.
Using technology from virtual makeover provider ModiFace, the mirror tracks the location of a user’s facial features and applies eye shadow colours directly via a video feed from a camera.
Through using the mirror, shoppers are able to try out different shades of cosmetics by tapping a palette on the screen and also view eye shadows from different angles as they move their heads from side to side.
“We believe ModiFace’s 3D Augmented Reality Mirror will be a breakthrough technology for our customers as they virtually try out different eye shadow shades quickly and easily,” said Antonio Ferreira de Almeida, general manager, Sephora Italy.
The move follows a number similar initiatives by beauty retailers looking to capitalise on augmented reality technology, including luxury brand Bobbi Brown, who last year used Blippar to bring its campaign to life.
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Via: The Drum

Augmented Reality Maps Lead The Way To Free Wi-Fi

Japanese telco NTT and navigation content service provider NAVITIME Japan have partnered to make finding free Wi-Fi in Japan easier through an app with an augmented reality (AR)  feature.
Through the “Free Wi-Fi Spot Search” feature in the NAVITIME For Japan Travel app, locals and tourists can perform offline search for the nearest free Wi-Fi spot. The app provides users with navigation solutions in English, including directions to popular tourist spots and routes for public transit systems.
The new Wi-Fi search feature lets users find the nearest Wi-Fi location even when offline. The feature comes with an AR mode and users just need to hold up their mobile screens and the app overlays information like the distance and directions to the nearest free Wi-Fi destination.
The app provides information on over 50,000 free Wi-Fi spots provided by NTT FREE Wi-Fi, FREESPOT, and Starbucks. App users will be able to obtain an ID and password for NTT East’s FREE Wi-Fi service for two weeks free of charge. The offer is available initially on a trial basis until September 30th.
The app was created to help visitors find Wi-Fi stations when traveling in Japan. According to NTT’s press release, a survey by the Japan Tourism Agency revealed that access to free public wireless connection is a main concern of tourists visiting Japan.
NAVITIME for Japan Travel can be downloaded from the iTunes store or from Google Play.
Via: psfk

The Next Evolution for Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) has been around in various forms for quite a while now – in fact, one of its first uses surfaced around 2000 in the shape of an AR-enhanced version of the game Quake. Since then, AR has been the subject of much conversation – not least about when it will realize its full potential and move away from the hype and gimmicky uses that we currently see. I’m writing to tell you that AR has evolved and it’s here to stay, as we move away from mere brand led activity and towards a mobile and social platform where users are the content creators.
Recent research shows that mobile augmented reality is expected to accelerate at a rapid pace by 2015, following a recent surge in the market. In fact, mobile augmented reality is estimated to top $1 billion annually by 2015, as consumers and businesses are becoming increasingly more familiar with mobile applications and services that use AR.
Since the dawn of AR, innovative brands were quick to pick up on the trend; Nestle, Unilever and Heinz have all recently used AR in their creative campaigns. Some of the most well known uses of AR in marketing strategies have been by retailers. We saw plenty of headlines pondering how AR changing rooms could change the future of shopping, whilst Airwalk’s AR-based invisible pop up store encouraged sneaker fans to use their smartphone app to hunt out the store (thus finding their exclusive shoes!). Last year, was saw that video games that incorporate AR accounted for 40 per cent of AR downloads and this will no doubt help push the industry in 2014 and 2015.
But AR needs to continue to evolve. Why? Well, while brands enjoyed the hype and rewards from user experiences with their campaigns, and video games see the added benefits of AR features, it has been all too easy for the users of AR to become disengaged – once they’ve tried it and seen the content, there is often very little chance to interact with the content.
Instead, the key to re-engage users is to actually get them involved creating the content themselves and sharing it with their friends and followers too, not just scanning and revealing. We’re really interested to see is how users evolve from mere consumers of AR into content creators as they begin to add photos and videos to the objects and images around them with Taggar, our new social augmented reality app.
What differentiates Taggar from other new AR platform is that it’s own social network, showing users which images and objects have been tagged and making them curious to discover the content that has been added by fellow users and brands. But crucially, whilst the technology is already available on smartphones now, but is also built to work to work on newer technologies like Google Glass. The shift to wearable devices will be crucial to the future of AR, completely changing the way we experience the world around us and proving the potential of AR in our everyday lives.
Via: The Wall

Public buses lure riders with on-board augmented reality entertainment

To attract more people to take the bus, the public transit system in Aberdeen, Scotland placed augmented reality technology on the backs of the bus seats allowing passengers to view interactive videos when they scan the trigger with their smart devices. The on-board entertainment systems were first placed on First Aberdeen buses, which feature free Wi-Fi.
To stream the channel of interactive videos, passengers need to first download the free First Scotland augmented reality app from Google Play or the App Store and then scan the trigger with their smart devices.
The interactive video channel include videos containing interviews with staff, information about the services, movie trailers or schedules. Passengers can also buy movie tickets through the channel or just surf the internet.
Via: psfk

Mr Peabody and Sherman

For the launch of new film Mr. Peabody and Sherman, Posterscope has created an interactive 6-sheet campaign featuring augmented reality.  The Five sites (located nationally) transfer participants back-in-time to a choice of historical periods, ‘dresses’ them in costumes and takes and emails their photo.

Augmented Reality Floors

GM promoted the new Cadillac ATS model using 3D perspective floorart race tracks which consumers could drive a virtual car around by viewing the tracks through a smartphone or tablet.  This augmented reality experience was devised by Carat, Fallon and Posterscope USA and attracted nearly 4,000 plays per location per day!

Augmented reality, Facebook connected bus shelters

Intel used augmented reality face-tracking technology on 12 wrapped bus shelters to promote their new Ultrabook.  Passersby were invited to stand in front of a screen and choose from Medieval, Western and Kung-Fu themes by donning a virtual hat.  They could then take and upload a picture to the Intel Facebook campaign and enter a prize draw via a QR code. The campaign was planned and created by Posterscope, OMD, JCDecaux innovate and Total Immersion.
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Meanwhile in Covent Garden, Intel’s Project Monument drew crowds with its giant vending machine; dispensing free consoles, laptops and toys from yesteryear.  The event also included games and sports from our childhood.
Via: londonist 

Wild animal augmented reality experience

To support the US launch of the Blu-ray/DVD Frozen Planet, BBC Home Entertainment partnered with Appshaker to enable crowds to interact with the animals of the Polar region. Live streaming allowed the experience to be shared around the world.
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Brilliant mobile augmented reality

Volkswagen Canada is using impressive large-scale augmented reality, consisting of several gigantic billboards and posters on bus shelters, to introduce the latest Beetle to Canada
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Via: clickz

AR Window Shopping

Another example of ’high-tech’ window shopping was demonstrated by NET-A-PORTER’s Augmented Reality Shopping Windows in Paris, New York, London, Munich and Sydney. Using the NET-A-PORTER iPhone/iPad app, customers can reveal 360 degree product models, video catwalk shows, product information and pricing, and can also purchase products.
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Via:  Creativity