Remember when kids would use scissors, glue, and crayons to convert boxes into robots, cars, and doll houses? That’s so 20th century. Now you just use a mobile device for instant results, perfect for the imagination challenged.
Amazon just launched a free app called Amazon Augmented Reality that allows users to just point their phone cameras “at the QR Code on an Amazon box, and immerse yourself in augmented reality.”
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This shows the box as a car or whatever someone at Amazon imagined it should be turned into, doing the visualizing on your behalf. In the words of Amazon, the app “accesses your camera to digitally render content to create the illusion of digital assets in the physical environment.”
Amazon doesn’t specify what the AR effects are, though you can infer from the illustrative shots that one option is turning your box into a car you can pretend to drive. Another is getting an AR dog to appear in 3D outside its box, and some others offer Halloween themed pumpkin and/or bat effects.
There was a time when people did this kind of thing for themselves in real 3D. But now we’re used to viewing our world through our devices, so AR trumps actual reality.
Getting a free app that encourages you to keep your Amazon boxes around is likely to keep the mega-seller on its customers’ minds even after the hype over Prime Day dies down. So, it is clearly a smart marketing move.
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