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AR and VR shopping more desired by UK customers due to COVID-19

More than half of UK customers are currently more willing to use AR and VR for shopping as their perception of it has changed due to the pandemic.

New research published by software comparison platform GetApp investigated the use of AR and VR technology by UK customers for both on-line and in-store shopping.

According to the results, only 15% of consumers in the UK have used AR technology to buy something online, however, over half of them are willing to try it. The majority of respondents who would like to try this technology both for online (55%) and in-store shopping (56%) are women.

The current virus has influenced people’s attitude towards AR, 58% of customers stating they are more willing to use AR as their perception of it has changed due to the pandemic, a similar number (54%) said the same about VR.

90% of respondents who would like to try the AR technology, agree that AR would be most useful when buying clothes online, followed by 70% stating accessories (handbags and glasses) and 59% stating furniture. When it comes to VR, the majority (63%) would prefer to use it for buying food and drinks, followed by clothes and accessories (59%).

Sonia Navarrete, content analyst at GetApp UK, comments:
“The pandemic has accelerated the expansion of reality towards digital. The use of technology that allows remote operations has increased.

“Reducing the risk of contagion is the main aspect for which AR and VR use is of interest in stores since contact is avoided. Nowadays it is advisable to maintain social distancing both with objects and with strangers, and augmented reality allows it. This is a key advantage of this technology in this new reality.

“Our study reveals that 1 in 2 British consumers are willing to try AR for shopping. This poses a great opportunity for retailers. Offering AR to consumers can help increase brand loyalty, as well as transform the way a business works.”