The company is working AR technology into its current app for a unique new consumer experience.
Walgreens has now announced that it will be using augmented reality to help customers to be able to better navigate their store shelves in order to be able to more easily find everything that they have on their shopping lists.
The feature is being piloted as a potential addition to its mobile app to allow smartphones to guide customers in-store.
In order to use the augmented reality, the Walgreens loyalty app partner, Aisle411, is now testing the Tango technology from Google. The goal is to be able to add 3D images to the in store maps that it currently already provides. The outcome will be that the mobile app will expand its capabilities from being exclusively a discount and loyalty program to the point where it also offers easy to use and helpful product finders within stores.
This enhanced augmented reality version of the mobile app has been available in four of its stores, internally.
These stores have internally been testing the branded mobile app in New York, Chicago, Seattle, and St. Louis. According to the Aisle411 CEO, Nathan Pettyjohn, the company expects to continue running the trial for another two or three months. Should the AR app eventually become available to shoppers, then the final product will likely be a smartphone or tablet application that can be mounted to a shopping cart.
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A spokesperson for Walgreens explained that “This initiative enables us to further explore how Walgreens can create an even more convenient and relevant customer experience.” This rep added that “The test allows participants to reimagine the retail experience and explore what future enhancements could be made to better meet customer need.”
Aisle411 has chosen to use the Tango technology from Google in order to be able to form an augmented reality 3D map of each of the Walgreens retail locations through the use of a special type of camera that is capable of capturing 2 million data points per second and will also take the orientation of the user into account. It brings this information together with the floor plan of the retailer and with the data that indicates where the specific products can be found on the store shelves.