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Innovation

Online homewares retailers embrace redecorating apps

Stop moving around the new couch to try to figure out where it fits. Forget about trying to judge a paint colour from tiny samples against the wall. New tools such as virtual reality measuring apps and online mood boards are trying to help consumers find easier and quicker ways to decorate homes and apartments.

At a new technology lab in Boston, online home retailer Wayfair.com is digitising its catalogue and testing augmented reality and virtual reality apps as well as 3D models of its products.

The all-in-one site Houzz.com (and sister site Houzz.com.au) not only helps shoppers get inspiration and narrow their choices down from its more than five million products from over 10,000 sellers, it also helps people find local professionals to install the curtains they just bought.

Earlier this year Houzz.com launched an augmented reality app called “View in My Room” that allows shoppers to experiment with home decor options by virtually placing products from its online store into their home before they buy.

It seems to be converting browsers into buyers. Fifty per cent of users who made purchases in the latest version of the Houzz app used “View in My Room” to preview the product in their home, the company says.

AP

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