IKEA’s New App Uses Virtual Reality to Place Furniture in Your Room (No Lifting Required!)

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Finding the exact right spot to place a piece of furniture can be a painstaking, tedious process that can put a strain on a relationship — to say nothing of your aching back.

The geniuses at IKEA have been feeling our pain, and thanks to the technological advances in virtual reality there’s no longer the need to movie that sofa all over the place until determining the best place for it — because there’s an app for that.

Using a platform pioneered by top VR developer ARKit, IKEA Place is described as “an augmented reality (AR) application that will let people confidently experience, experiment and share how good design transforms any space, such as a home, office, school or studio. From sofas and armchairs to coffee tables, all of the products in IKEA Place are 3D and true to scale so that every choice is just the right size, design and function.”

See a piece of IKEA furniture you think will be a great addition to your living room? To be certain, the app allows you to virtually “place” any IKEA product in whatever space you had in mind, featuring three-dimensional, true-to-scale models of everything from sofas to coffee tables to whatever, allowing for an accurate depiction of the furnishing’s size, design and functionality within your space.

“IKEA Place makes it easier to make buying decisions in your own place, to get inspired and try many different products, styles and colours in real-life settings with a swipe of your finger,” explains Michael Valdsgaard, Leader Digital Transformation at Inter IKEA Systems. “Augmented reality and virtual reality will be a total game changer for retail in the same way as the internet. Only this time, much faster.”

Launched in September 2017, more than 2,000 IKEA products are currently available, with more to come, and IKEA plans for the app to play “a key role” in launching new product lines.

Not only does IKEA Place allow you to virtually “place” IKEA products in a room, the app also lets you digitally capture the resulting image so you can share it — either as a photo or a video — with friends to get their opinions on your potential new furnishings.

“ARKit gives us the opportunity to help shape the development of AR as an accessible tool for real-life decision making,” adds Valdsgaard. “Now, technology has caught up with our ambition. AR lets us redefine the experience for furniture retail once more, in our restless quest to create a better everyday life for everyone, everywhere.”