How are Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) Redefining Digital Signage?

  Time to read 8 min
No AI was used to create this original content. This article was researched and written without the help of any AI tools.

Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are technologies that are changing how we perceive and interact with our surroundings. 

AR blends digital elements with our physical environment, enhancing our understanding of the world around us. VR transports us to completely virtual environments, enabling us to explore and experience things beyond our physical limits.

These technologies are redefining many industries, including digital signage.

Know that the goal of digital signage is to deliver information effectively, thereby helping businesses connect better with their target audiences. 

AR and VR enhance information delivery, so these technologies can help digital signage revolutionise advertising, communication, and customer engagement.

This article will explore AR and VR, highlighting their fundamental concepts and how these technologies can redefine digital signage. 

Overview of augmented reality 

Augmented Reality (AR) is a technology that overlays digital content onto real-world environments in real time to enhance users’ perception and understanding of their physical environment

AR technology superimposes computer-generated information, images, or videos onto the user’s view of their physical environment. It does this through the use of AR glasses or smartphone lenses. 

AR is able to provide contextual information and an immersive experience, thereby enriching users’ interaction with their surroundings. It achieves this by blending virtual elements with the physical environment. 

Think of looking at a product while wearing AR glasses and having relevant information (like its dimension, weight, material used, and more) displayed in your field of view. 

With such relevant digital information, you’ll have a more engaging experience.

Overview of virtual reality

Virtual Reality (VR) is a technology that transports users to a computer-generated virtual environment. The technology simulates a virtual world and immerses individuals in it, isolating them from the physical world.

VR stimulates their senses to provide a sense of presence and realism. That is, VR technology makes users feel they are physically present in the digital world.

VR systems use various sensory inputs to allow users to interact with computer-generated virtual worlds. 

These include haptic feedback devices that track hand movements and allow users to manipulate digital objects and navigate within the virtual realms.

How augmented reality and virtual reality can redefine digital signage

AR and VR technologies are reshaping digital signage, allowing digital signs to offer never-before-seen levels of immersive and interactive experiences.

Here’s how AR and VR can redefine your digital signage campaign:

Interactive product demonstration 

AR and VR technologies transform static product displays into interactive experiences using immersive 3D visualisation.

Unlike traditional signage that showcases products in 2D images or videos, VR technology allows customers to interact with products virtually in 3D, visualise features, and explore functionalities before making a purchase decision.

Realistic 3D product displays give customers a more comprehensive understanding of products’ design and functionality than static images or dynamic video presentations. 

With 3D projections, customers can visualise the products from different angles, as well as rotate the display and zoom in to explore details.

AR and VR technology increases customer engagement, increasing the likelihood of making purchases by incorporating immersive 3D visualisations into digital signage. 

Virtual try-ons

While digital signage allows you to showcase a product in all its glory, AR-powered digital signage and VR simulations can allow you to show customers how a product will look on them.

This is more appropriately called virtual try-ons. And it enables customers to virtually try on clothing, accessories, eyewear, and more before purchasing them. 

This enhances the shopping experience, reducing the likelihood of dissatisfaction with purchases and returns.

VR technology allows virtual try-ons by using interactive screens that capture the users’ form and render an image of the product on it, ensuring a realistic representation of how the product/ time will fit and appear on the user.

Augmented Reality (AR) technology allows virtual try-ons by overlaying digital representations of the product onto the user’s reflection on an AR-powered digital display.

An example is Bloomingdale’s AR-powered digital display, which allows eyeglass shoppers to try on eyeglasses virtually by projecting a life-like image of the eyewear onto the customer’s face on the screen.

Immersive storytelling

Digital signage is a powerful tool for storytelling that can help you connect emotionally with your target audience. 

Incorporating AR and VR technologies supercharges digital signage’s storytelling capabilities, allowing for a more interactive and immersive experience.

That is, AR and VR technologies help brands tell more immersive stories and create memorable experiences for customers, driving brand loyalty.

For example, since VR transports users into a virtual space, it creates a sense of presence in the narrative. Rather than merely being told about events, users feel like they are physically present as the events unfold. This apparent realism enhances their engagement and emotional connection.

AR and VR also allow for interactive storytelling, where users/viewers can actively participate in shaping the narrative. 

You can include branching storylines and interactive elements to encourage users to engage with the digital content as they wish to direct how the story unfolds.

Delivery of contextual information 

These emerging technologies, particularly augmented reality, allow businesses to provide contextual information about the products they are showcasing, enhancing the relevance and usefulness of the displays.

Remember that AR overlays digital information onto physical objects or environments. Thus, businesses can use it to provide contextual information about content displayed on their digital signage screens. 

For example, retail stores showcasing their products on digital screens can use augmented reality technology to overlay relevant information about the product (such as pricing, product details, reviews, or promotional offers) on the screen. 

Customers can then use their mobile devices to scan QR codes or markers on the signage to trigger the AR overlay and view the digital information.

Museums and historical sites can also use AR technology to enrich exhibits displayed on digital signage by overlaying additional layers of information onto them. 

Visitors only need to point their smartphones to an AR overlay marker and scan it. They can access multimedia content, audio guides, 3D reconstruction, and more, enhancing their understanding of exhibits, artifacts, and other points of interest. 

Also Read: Enriching Art Exhibitions: How Digital Signage Enhances Visitor Engagement in Museums.

Showcasing educational content 

One application of digital signage is displaying educational content. AR and VR technologies take this to the next level, enriching static educational displays by providing interactive and immersive learning experiences for viewers.

These technologies allow brands to deliver more effective learning by using AR overlays, 3D models, and VR simulations.

For example, retail stores can use 3D product demonstrations to educate their customers about product features. 

Museums can overlay additional information onto exhibits that users can access to enhance their understanding and appreciation of the exhibits. 

Also, VR simulations can be displayed on digital signage screens to educate viewers about emergency response.

Provision of interactive maps and wayfinding

AR and VR technology takes digital signage’s wayfinding capabilities to the next level. Incorporating these technologies into digital signage ensures users get directions as they move, helping them navigate complex indoor environments easily.

Consider that you are using regular digital signage. A customer views a navigational map on a digital screen to get directions to the section where they can find a desired item. 

They briefly memorise the directions and use this to find their way to the item. But what if they forget the directions they memorised?

Going back to the digital screen to check the directions will lead to a frustrating shopping experience. This is where AR-powered wayfinding comes in!

Using the user’s smartphone camera and display, augmented reality navigation systems overlay directional arrows and other visual cues onto the user’s view of the environment.  

Like a regular digital wayfinding display, an AR-powered wayfinding digital sign provides users with a floor map of the indoor environment as well as directions to their intended destination. However, it also provides users with directions in real-time as they find their way to their intended destination.

Users only need to use their smartphones to scan a marker on a screen, and turn-by-turn directions to their intended destination will be superimposed on their live camera feed. 

As they move around, directional arrows on their camera view provide real-time navigation assistance.

Enhancement of virtual tours and experiences

While digital signage screens can provide virtual tours, incorporating VR-powered immersive simulations into digital signage takes virtual tours to a whole new world of realism.

VR-powered digital signage can offer immersive virtual tours of destinations, properties, and attractions, allowing users to explore immersive environments and make informed decisions without being physically present.

Businesses across various industries can use VR-powered digital signage to offer immersive tours and experiences to boost signups and sales.

For example, real estate agencies can use VR-powered digital signage to offer virtual property tours. Potential buyers who visit their offices can wear VR headsets or scan elements on digital displays to explore the featured property remotely. 

They can virtually visualize the layout and design and walk through each room as if they were there.

Fitness centres and gyms can use VR-powered digital signage systems to offer customers a glimpse of upcoming experiential events (like yoga retreats, beach boot camps, themed fitness parties, etc.).

Retail stores can also use these systems to give customers an immersive virtual tour of their store and showcase their product offerings. Customers can explore different departments and look up particular products.

Gamification of customer experiences

AR and VR-powered digital signage allow businesses to gamify customer experiences and drive engagement that boosts conversions.

Gaming is one of the most popular applications of augmented reality and virtual reality, as these technologies offer immersive and interactive gameplay experiences. 

The popular Pokemon Go mobile game is an excellent example of AR-powered gaming, as it allows players to hunt and capture virtual creatures in their real-world surroundings.

Businesses can merge AR and VR immersive gaming capabilities with digital signage to drive engagement.

For example, retail stores can use AR-powered digital signage to host scavenger hunts where users search for hidden virtual objects. Participants can use their smartphones to scan AR markers on digital screens, and the digital information will be overlaid in the real-world environment through their smartphone's camera view. 

You may also like: 15 Ways Adopting a Digital Signage Solution Can Revolutionise Your Retail Store Experience.

Real-time data visualisation

AR and VR-powered signage can provide real-time data, allowing users to stay updated on important information. With AR overlays, users can view live data updates integrated into their surroundings. 

For example, in retail stores, users can point their smartphones at an item on a digital screen and scan the AR marker to view real-time information about product availability, pricing, promos, etc. 

In fitness centres, users can use VR systems for workout tracking. With VR headsets, users can view real-time data like heart rate and calorie burn, providing immediate feedback and motivation to achieve fitness goals.

Also Read: 25 Innovative Ways To Use Digital Signage in Fitness Centres.

Provision of data analytics and performance metrics

AR and VR signage systems can collect valuable data on user engagement, providing businesses with actionable insights to refine their marketing strategies and optimise returns.

AR and VR-powered digital signage can track user interactions. For example, these screens can track when users scan AR markers to access overlaid content. 

Also, AR and VR signage can monitor the amount of time users spend interacting with content (dwell time). 

With this information, you can gauge your audience’s interests. Longer dwell time may indicate they find your content relevant and compelling.

You can also use AR and VR signage to track which of your content attracts the most attention. With this, you’ll know popular attractions within your business space and what content to improve.

The ability of AR and VR technologies to collect user engagement data means it is perfect for A/B testing signage content. 

You can experiment with different interactive elements and call-to-actions, measure user engagement, and then use the data to determine the element that will drive engagement the most.

You may also like: Unlock the Power of Visual Marketing: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Digital Signage Strategy.

Takeaway: Supercharge digital signage with AR and VR technologies

AR and VR enhance information delivery to drive engagement. Virtual Reality transports users to computer-generated digital worlds, providing an immersive experience that enhances engagement. 

Unlike virtual reality, augmented reality overlays digital information onto real-world environments, enriching users’ interaction with their surroundings.

Since the reason for implementing digital signage is to deliver information more effectively and drive user engagement, integrating AR and VR technologies with digital signage allows businesses to optimise advertising, communication, and customer engagement.

Implementing AR or VR-powered digital signage starts with choosing reliable digital signage software. This is where Luna Screens comes in!

Luna Screens is a cloud-based digital signage solution that allows users to turn any digital screen into stunning digital signs. Luna Screen’s user-friendly interface means that even users with zero technical skills will have no problem using it to create interactive and immersive digital displays.

What is more, Luna Screens offers unparalleled uptime. Your digital signs will be up and running whenever you need them to, delivering immersive experiences that drive engagement and boost ROI.

Ready to supercharge your digital signage campaigns with AR and VR technologies? Get Started with Luna Screens today!

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Copyright © 2024 Luna Screens. All Rights Reserved. Privacy policy
Copyright © 2024 Luna Screens.
All Rights Reserved. Privacy policy