With Amazon Product Preview, Amazon customers can see how products will look in a real world setting using their mobile phone. Product Preview is an augmented reality feature within the Amazon Mobile app, which helps customers visualize products in their environment using the camera on a mobile device.
Amazon Product Preview was a collaboration with designers, researchers, product managers, and engineers to create a cohesive experience for the customer while using computer vision technology: SLAM, 3D object tracking, and illumination estimation.
Amazon customers were ordering large TVs through the Amazon marketplace and the majority of TVs were returned because they were either too large or too small for the intended space. The TVs were often damaged during return shipping and this became costly. We created Amazon Product Preview to improve the customer's confidence in their purchase decision and help solve a business problem. With Product Preview, a customer can see in the camera view of their mobile device, a virtual product properly sized and placed in their surroundings.
We tested several Product Preview prototypes in on-site user testing in people's homes. The testers were all Amazon customers, lived in the San Francisco Bay Area, and were currently looking to purchase a new TV.
Dollar bill as target
Before entering the AR experience, customers had to print out a custom printed fiducial, or target. During usability testing, we discovered that customers were having difficulty with printing the custom paper target. Many customers did not have a printer at home and some just did not understand that the AR experience needed a "target" for the technology to work properly. As an option to printing the custom paper target, we introduced using a common everyday object: a dollar bill. Because of its smaller size, the dollar bill was not as accurate with sizing of the TVs, but 57% more customers used the dollar bill over 43% that used the custom paper target.
We immediately saw an increase in TV purchases (up 50%) and a significant decrease in TV returns (down 95%). In addition, in the first 6 weeks of the launch of th edollar bill as target, the trend of new successful customers per day increased in the average number of new successful customers from 16 to 39 (+144%) per day.
I was also responsible for the brand identity and visual design for Product Preview.