IKEA announced Tuesday the launch of IKEA Place, an augmented reality (AR) application that will let people confidently experience, experiment and share how good design transforms any space, such as a home, office, school or studio.
From sofas and armchairs to coffee tables, all of the products in IKEA Place are 3D models and true to scale so that every choice is just the right size, design and function. The app will be available in the Apple store starting in late-September; users will need iOS 11 to enjoy this app.
"IKEA Place makes it easier to make buying decisions in your own place, to get inspired and try many different products, styles and colors in real-life settings with a swipe of your finger. Augmented reality and virtual reality will be a total game changer for retail in the same way as the internet. Only this time, much faster," said Michael Valdsgaard, Leader Digital Transformation at Inter IKEA Systems.
Built on Apple's new ARKit technology, IKEA Place marks an important milestone in the IKEA digital transformation journey. IKEA is one of the first home furnishing brands in the world to bring this technology to people, shifting the way we purchase furniture in the future. The app automatically scales products - based on room dimensions - with 98% accuracy. The AR technology is so precise that you will be able to see the texture of the fabric, as well as how light and shadows are rendered on your furnishings.
"ARKit gives us the opportunity to help shape the development of AR as an accessible tool for real-life decision making," Valdsgaard said.
In addition to digitally placing IKEA products in a room, the app allows people to capture the setting in the app and share as an image or video with friends. They can then purchase the products directly through their local IKEA website.
More than 2,000 IKEA products will be available in the app at launch, and in the future, the app will play a key role in the launch of new product lines. The products in the first release will focus on larger furniture products for the living room: all sofas, all armchairs, all footstools, all coffee tables and top-selling storage solutions that can be placed on the floor. Some of the most recognized IKEA products are available on IKEA Place, including the VIMLE sofa, the STRANDMON winged chair and the LISABO side table.
"Now, technology has caught up with our ambition. AR lets us redefine the experience for furniture retail once more, in our restless quest to create a better everyday life for everyone, everywhere," Valdsgaard said.
How to use IKEA Place:
- Make sure you have upgraded your device to iOS 11.
- Download the IKEA Place app for free from the Apple App Store.
- Scan the floor in your place. Browse the list of products available in the app.
- Select a product that you want to place.
- Move and place the product into the space and decide if you want to buy it.
Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered home furnishings of good design and function at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 392 IKEA stores in 48 countries, including 44 in the U.S. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information see IKEA-USA.com, @IKEAUSANews, @IKEAUSA or IKEAUSA on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest.