Lippert Components uses Augmented Reality tech to sell RV parts

WSBT 22 photo

Remember Pokemon Go? Millions of people use their smartphones to capture fictional creatures. Those creatures appear on their screen as if they were in the same real-world as the player. The game has been credited for bringing Augmented Reality to the masses.

Now businesses around the world are using this same technology to sell products. Manufacturer Lippert Components has been using the technology for almost a year to help sell the stuff you'll find inside and outside RVs.

Lippert's RV product manager, Dominick Bilancio, can walk customers through an RV with Lippert Parts -- with or without stepping foot inside an actual RV.

"You can actually walk through the floor plan," says Bilancio.

That is because he is using augmented reality. It is a technology that puts 3-D objects in the room with you.

It's how Lippert is designing and selling its products to RV companies.

"We can go out to your coach, get to your (3-D model) floor plan up and place it in the coach," says Bilancio, "so you can actually see it in the floor plan, experience, walk around, you can tell me, do you want to get bigger, smaller? Do you want some more aesthetic features? Is this what you were going for? And we can change it right then."

Michael Rupchock handles all the digital tools for Lippert's customers. He says, this is just the beginning of what this technology can do.

"In the next 5 to 10 years we will continue to explore possible uses for augmented reality and use them where they will help us save time, or money or improve efficiency or just make the whole customer experience more delightful for customers," says Rupchock, the director of customer experience technology for Lippert.

Right now, Rupchock says Lippert is the only RV company using Augmented Reality but that could soon be changing.

Other businesses have already adopted the technology.

At IKEA, you can use it to virtually place furniture in your home.

L'Oreal has an app that allows people to virtually try on makeup.

Amazon is already using it to let shoppers visualize how an item will look in their homes.

Snapchat has a ton of applications -- from a dancing hot dog to bunny ears.

Lippert began experimenting with this technology in research and development last summer. It is already being used in other applications like training and marketing.

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