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Ikea launches first big-box virtual reality store

VRstore-mediaphotoIkea Australia has launched a virtual reality store, the first among large format retailers in Australia.

The technology, designed to enhance customers’ online shopping experience, allows customers to ‘walk’ through an Ikea store and browse products. Customers in certain parts of the country can also make purchases through the virtual store on their desktop device or computer.

Malcolm Haylett, Ikea Australia multichannel specialist, said the Ikea virtual reality store was about bringing online shopping to life in a new, interactive way.

“The Ikea virtual reality store has been developed to support our online shopping service,” Haylett said. “We know that it’s important for customers to see and experience our home furnishings range. Ikea has recently made a move towards online retailing, but we want to offer the full Ikea store experience to our online shoppers.”

Haylett said the Ikea virtual reality store is just another way for customers to look online for inspiration before making a purchase, using a different and more immersive tool.

The technology allows a customer to stand in a room-set and visualise it as if he or she were there in person, and can for example, see the retailer’s full range of sofas or beds at a glance.

“In the Ikea virtual reality store, you self-navigate the experience as if you walking an Ikea store,” Haylett said.

“Our unique virtual reality experience will support our current online shopping offering through our Canberra store and 10 collection points around the country,” he added.

The store will be officially launched in Townsville last weekend.

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