HSN, Inc’s Great Augmented Reality ​L​eap Forward

In a surprising high-tech move from a firm that most of us would likely associate with a more dated form of retail, the HSNi has gone big on augmented reality for its new mobile app.

While many other big-name retailers — particularly web darlings like Wayfair — have been flirting with AR extensions of their mobile products with fairly limited applications, HSN has apparently decided to go bigger and broader.

The new AR design app is now live across two of HSN’s home and lifestyle brands — Frontgate and Ballard Designs. Cimagine is behind the tech, which is designed to allow users to virtually place objects they are considering inside their own homes (using photographs); it has over 1,000 or so furnishing and home decor items in its collection.

To tap in, customers use their phone’s camera to scan the room, which is then overlaid with the considered product in 3D. The app also allows users to mix and match to get an idea of how certain products will look together.

“We remain committed to delivering excellent customer experiences, including offering great product presented in a compelling way,” said Judy Schmeling, president of Cornerstone Brands. “By leveraging the power of technology, we are able to offer a differentiated and immersive shopping experience allowing consumers to engage virtually with our brands.”