January 19, 2021

Volume XI, Number 19


January 18, 2021

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Augmented Reality: Coming to a Store Near You?

Recent moves from PayPal and Target have brought fresh attention to the use of augmented reality (AR) in commercial settings. The technology remains in its infant stage but the revival of PayPal’s patent for payment-enabled AR glasses has some analysts wondering how close the technology is to becoming the mainstream.

The software described in the patent would give consumers with the glasses access to product and purchasing data simply by looking at an item on a store shelf. Consumers could store their payment information within the PayPal system and buy items from vendors. While there is no indication that PayPal is planning on releasing the glasses just yet, it reveals some of the ways in which AR could become a day-to-day technology in the retail sector.

Other uses for AR include Target’s virtual make-up app, which allows customers in select stores to “try on” different make up products via a digital screen. Rebel Athletic is currently developing an AR fitting experience that will enable customers to get an accurate clothing fit by scanning their bodies for measurements. The company anticipates the mobile app will be available in its stores within months and plans to develop the tech to a point that customers can download and use the app on their personal devices, removing the uncertainty many feel when shopping online.

Augmented reality still has a way to go before it becomes a daily part of consumer life. The interest of large players in the payments and retail industries cannot however be ignored.  The degree of enriched data that will be generated through the use of such technology also makes the prize worth pursuing in many contexts.

Copyright 2020 K & L GatesNational Law Review, Volume VIII, Number 149



About this Author

Cameron Abbott, Technology, Attorney, Australia, corporate, KL Gates Law Firm

Mr. Abbott is a corporate lawyer who focuses on technology, telecommunications and broadcasting transactions. He assists corporations and vendors in managing their technology requirements and contracts, particularly large outsourcing and technology procurements issues including licensing terms for SAP and Oracle and major system integration transactions.

Mr. Abbott partners with his clients to ensure market leading solutions are implemented in to their businesses. He concentrates on managing and negotiating complex technology solutions, which...

Warwick Andersen Technology Lawyer KL Gates

Mr. Andersen is a senior corporate lawyer with a focus on commercial, technology and sourcing projects. He has advised on large scale outsourcing projects, technology agreements for both vendors and customers, corporate support, privacy and telecommunications regulatory work. He has acted for government departments, large listed companies, telecommunications companies and technology suppliers.