US company acquires augmented reality system from Kiwi firm Smudge

Smudge
Smudge

Gone are the days of having to imagine what new elements might look like in a retail space. Now, retailers can see it for themselves in a totally immersive and realistic way Reuben Bijl, Smudge co-founder

A Kiwi-made app which uses augmented reality (AR) to help retailers and restaurateurs visualise in-store elements before implementing them has been acquired by US firm InContext Solutions.

Staccar, created by Christchurch-based software developer, Smudge, makes it easy to accurately visualise and customise in-store merchandising elements mdash; such as drinks fridges, display units, signage and more mdash; by virtually placing them in-situ on phone and tablet screens.

Under the terms of the acquisition agreement, InContext Solutions buys the underlying technology for Staccar, as well as related apps and services.

Both parties will continue to support the ongoing success of the system through collaborative development.

Smudge says Staccar dramatically improves the sell-in process for field sales reps, execution managers and visual merchandisers by helping them show and share in-store solutions with customers before they commit.

"Gone are the days of having to imagine what new elements might look like in a retail space. Now, retailers can see it for themselves in a totally immersive and realistic way,” says Reuben Bijl, managing director, Smudge.

“Augmented reality offers tremendous potential to help businesses make better decisions, and Staccar is a perfect example of that,” he adds.

He says that beyond live visualisation, AR can also be used for a range of sectors, including education, entertainment, communication and collaboration.

The Staccar system

It’s like in-the-moment photo-shopping Jenkin Lee, InContext Solutions

“The possibilities are endless and this is the kind of work we love doing mdash; to help businesses around the world solve problems using technology. By building better tools in the virtual world, we can help them make better decisions in the real world.”

“The retail space is grasping for new and innovative business solutions, and we’re excited to be at the forefront of leveraging augmented reality capabilities for brands to better visualise merchandising ideas with their retailers,” says Jenkin Lee, vice president of product management at InContext Solutions. “It’s like in-the-moment photo-shopping.”

“It takes all of 15 seconds for a field sales rep to remove all guesswork and show a retail manager what a new merchandising setup could look like.”

“InContext Solutions is a world-leading provider of 3D retail simulation software, so to have them buy Staccar is a real show-of-faith and testament to the work we’re doing right here in Christchurch,” says Smudge co-founder Toby Vincent.

“We’re proud of what our team has built and incredibly excited to continue working with InContext Solutions to help take this technology to the next level.”

CIO newsletters for regular updates on CIO news, career tips, views and events. Follow CIO New Zealand on Twitter:@cio_nz

Send news tips and comments to divina_paredes@idg.co.nz @divinap




Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

Security vs. innovation: IT's trickiest balancing act