What has happened?

In May 2019, Google rolled out a curious update to their search offering. Searching for certain animals whilst using an AR enabled phone will display a prompt for an augmented reality feature. Clicking on this feature will open a device’s camera and overlay the image of the subject being searched, whether that be an ominous alligator or a docile panda. The technology was showcased at Google’s I/O keynote where they stated that “the easiest way to wrap your head around new information is to see it”.

The Media Store Take

Google had previously rolled out AR within google maps, so this isn’t their first foray into delivering this technology at scale. It does however represent the first iteration where the technology has been implemented within a client monetised and customer facing product, being Google Search. This gives marketers plenty of things to think about in terms of tying user initiated content with paid search strategies. Homewares businesses will be able to project furniture within a user’s home, clothes will be able to be digitally tried on and you’ll be able to see what that dream car you’ve had in mind would look like in your own driveway.

Andrew Wise