The Fashion Industry & The VR Influx


The fashion industry is almost by definition cutting edge. It’s all about forward thinking, edgy approaches, and what’s new and trendy. Of course, typically this is the case regarding clothing lines and design styles. We don’t consider it with regard to technology, although it may be time to do just that. The influx of VR technology in the fashion business has begun, and just as VR has shown promise in so many other aspects of modern life, it has clear potential to transform the industry in significant ways.

Virtual Runway Demos

Throughout most of fashion history there’s been something of a disconnect between official runway shows and the shopping experience. While true fashion lovers will typically be aware of what’s been shown on the runway, or what’s made it into a catalogue, even they won’t always recognize or seek out the same products on store hangers and shelves. This may change as a result of a particular VR innovation that actually surfaced a few years ago. Back then, in 2015, Tommy Hilfiger started using virtual reality in stores around the world, in part to allow customers to view past runway shows in 360-degree virtual space. This effectively eliminates the aforementioned disconnect, and allows customers to go straight from an interactive runway show to the shelves.

Virtual Shopping From Home

One of the things we don’t talk about enough with virtual reality is its ability to take existing online experiences and make them more immersive. Gaming provides the best examples, and particularly casino gaming at this stage. Even before VR took off, “live dealer games” on desktops were all the rage, using improving video streaming tech to make gamers see actual dealers and casinos as they played. VR has the ability to simply be the next step forward, such that they can feel they’re actually in real casinos. Basically, the same exact thing can happen in fashion shopping. The best store websites are already fairly immersive in that they allow you to see updated inventory, look through clothing selections, and sometimes even see images of the store in question. VR can help you dive into the screen, so to speak, to turn home shopping into a truly realistic virtual store experience.

The Augmented Reality Factor

Augmented reality technically isn’t virtual reality, but it’s effectively a branch of the same technology, and one that might end up being particularly useful in fashion. At least, this is likely to be the case where accessories are concerned. Through augmented reality, people can use phones and tablets to look at virtual objects as if they’re in physical space – which, as you might imagine, could apply to things like shoes, bracelets, rings, or even potentially painted nails or watches. AR shopping will in the near future allow consumers to cycle through selections of these kind of accessories, viewing them as if they’ve already been purchased and put on, all from home.

VR “Mirrors”

VR mirrors don’t exactly present virtual reality in the traditional way we’re starting to get used to in other aspects of life. However, they’re among the main ways VR tech is proving to be useful in fashion retail, and there are some arguing that these mirrors will ultimately change the way we shop. The idea is actually quite simple: a mirror, either in a store window or inside the store somewhere, can recognize you as you walk by and show you an exact mirror image of yourself – wearing an outfit on sale. It’s essentially the same thing as a regular mirror, except that it shows you in clothes you could soon buy (or try on for real), rather than what you’re actually wearing.

What do you guys think about VR in fashion industry?

* Pics taken from website.


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