Google’s ARCore lets anyone take advantage of powerful augmented-reality tools on Android phones, and furniture retailers left and right are taking advantage of it. Both Ikea and Overstock have launched AR features for furniture shoppers in their apps, joining such powerhouses as Amazon, eBay, and Wayfair.
Both apps will allow users to place virtual furniture in their homes to preview what individual pieces will look like in specific rooms so customers can check if they’ll fit and match their decor before buying.
The apps are functionally very similar. The main differentiator is that Ikea’s app will display Ikea furniture (a large selection, to be sure) while Overstock’s app will feature the wide variety of brands that sell through its platform.
Ikea’s update to its Ikea Place app also includes a new “visual search” feature that’s like a furniture-specific Google Lens. If you take a picture of a piece that strikes your fancy, the app will find you similar or matching Ikea products. It’s also created a game where competitors pick and place virtual furniture around their house, and try to guess where their teammates will place what.
In bad news, things aren’t looking great for your local furniture store.