Ashley Furniture Launches Augmented and Virtual Reality Initiative

AR app, in-store VR technology bars will help shoppers design and configure their living spaces
November 30, 2016David Gill

AshleyFurniturelogo3x2TAMPA, Fla.-Ashley Furniture Industries is beginning a company-wide virtual and augmented reality strategy to enable consumers to create interior layouts and experience living spaces in 3-D.

The manufacturer/retailer is partnering with Marxent, a provider of platforms for both AR and VR, and is using the company’s VisualCommerce platform to create and scale the company’s product catalog and publish new 3-D product experiences. The first product from this relationship is the Ashley AR shopping app, which will help shoppers see how home furnishings fit into an existing space. In addition, in-store VR technology bars will combine a guided iPad-based space configuration experience with visualization through VR headsets, which will allow shoppers to design and visualize their bedrooms, dining rooms or living rooms.

Ashley will provide information on which of its stores will feature these offering at the beginning in 2017.

“Augmented and virtual reality are essential to our growth and vision for the future,” said Todd Wanek, Ashley’s president and CEO. “Our data shows that a combination of 3-D visualization, seeing, touching and feeling actual products, combined with the consultation of our knowledgeable salespeople, will lead to a stand-apart customer experience that is location-flexible.”

David GillDavid Gill | Senior Editor

David Gill covers home textiles, small electrics housewares, personal-care products, cleaning products, mattresses, consumer electronics and major appliances. He also reports on retailers and writes about the business and financial side of both vendors and retailers. He has more than 30 years of experience in business journalism, and has worked for other publications and websites that cover consumer products from both the manufacturer and retailer sides. His outside interests include sports (he is a big fan of the New York teams and of British soccer), cooking, movies and theater. He occasionally enjoys a good cigar as well.


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