The owner of Snapchat, Snap Inc., has acquired Israeli augmented reality (AR) start-up Cimagine Media for a reported $30 to $40 million, according to CNBC. Retailers should be intrigued by this acquisition because Cimagine Media makes software that allows businesses or consumers to visualize what an item might look like in their environment. Snapchat already uses similar AR technology to allow users to put filters on their faces to become, for example, a dog or a deer.
Total Retail’s Take: This could be huge for retailers. Already, Shop Direct and Wayfair use AR technology to let customers “try on” furniture in their homes, however, Snapchat is used on a wider scale. It will be exciting to see what Snapchat does with Cimagine Media and how retailers can take advantage of it.