From there you can place furniture, shelving systems, decorations and change wall colors, then export your design in both 3D and 2D and send it to others for approval or ridicule. The models can also include ceilings so you can add in virtual suspended light fittings. Other new features include being able to interact with items, such as turn AR lamps on and off, and place items on top of each other, say a lamp on a sideboard for example.
AR fans can sign up for the beta here, and those eligible will get an email from TestFlight as slots become available.
Tommy Campbell, digital design lead at SPACE10, says this is all prep for the arrival of Apple Glass. “While we have developed what is right now a mobile application, we’ve also been interested in what devices like glasses might be able to do for this technology,” he says. “So we’ve made very deliberate decisions to paint the vision of Studio as one that can exist on both the smartphone or in a glasses-like setting. We’ve also used a new renderer reality kit from Apple that lets us achieve a level of detail on these models that hasn’t been seen before in IKEA’s AR portfolio.”
Frustratingly, however, the app is once again not connected to the IKEA website or retail app. So if you are buying a rug, say, in the IKEA app, and want to check how it will look in your room, you can’t do this easily. You have to open up Studio and start from scratch.
Similarly, if you are looking at a sofa, IKEA knows the measurements of that sofa, but if you open up the measuring tool within Studio you have to manually input those same measurements to see if it will fit in your space.
This functionality could be added during the beta phase, of course. “It’s definitely a part of the roadmap,” says Fredrik Axén, digital manager core business franchise at Inter IKEA Systems. “Is it is a continuation of what you see now that will be transactional, or is it components of it? That could be the case, for instance, for the room planner.”
SPACE10 and IKEA are also considering integrating the 3D measuring tool into the IKEA website and taking other AR elements online. “Chrome and Safari and Mozilla are all playing around with web AR experiences,” says Campbell. “Could that be the next platform? Instead of developing an iOS or Android app, can we have a web experience for Studio that would work for everyone?”