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Augmented reality is coming to a mall near you
And eBay is bringing it to you.
EBay wants very badly to be a part of your IRL shopping experience, according to a recent Wired article. Starting this holiday season, Rebecca Minkoff stores will employ “magic mirrors” supplied by the e-commerce giant, which will blend your in-store and online shopping habits into a seamlessly integrated consumption experience.
EBay’s collaboration with Rebecca Minkoff marks the latest example of a Web-based brand making its presence felt in the physical world, reversing the now-familiar trope of the brick-and-mortar retailer moving into e-commerce.
“People still want to use their five senses, not just the one sense you use when you’re doing e-commerce,” Steve Yankovich, eBay’s head of innovation and new ventures, told Wired. “So physical retail, a showroom, I think will never go away.”
As we reported earlier this month, the Rebecca Minkoff flagship in New York City will feature a large touchscreen mirror in the main showroom, where users can swipe through “looks,” select items they like, and request a fitting room. When the items the shopper requested are ready, she will receive a text message to proceed to the fitting room. From here, the customer can use another of eBay’s mirrors to select which pieces she would like to buy, confirm her checkout with a sales representative, and receive a digital copy of the receipt.
No word on where the magic mirrors are heading next, but eBay isn’t the only supplier of this technology for retailers. Sephora has worked with ModiFace to use augmented reality mirrors for testing makeup. There’s actually a technology company called Magic Mirror that works with outlets to provide this technology in stores. But eBay’s more fully-featured devices are certainly making an impact with the mainstream, and it probably won’t be very long until the trickle-down happens and these magic mirrors make it from high-end boutiques to mall dressing rooms.
Photo via Rebecca Minkoff/Facebook
Alex La Ferla is a writer, artist, and architect living and working in New York City. His work for the Daily Dot focused on internet culture.