The pandemic is changing consumer behavior and pushing brands, especially in fashion, beauty, furniture, and interior design, to embrace virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) reality. Many are currently developing their virtual fittings to help their buyer make the right choice both in the offline store and online – without leaving home.
The use of VR in fashion has grown exponentially over the last 10 years. Due to the fact that luxury brands are increasingly resorting to innovation, they consider it an effective channel for their development. It can be noted that COVID-19 has contributed to a more rapid introduction of modern technologies in fashion brands.
This trend may go further. Beauty or fashion aren’t the only industries where VR is developing strongly. Another example that borders on beauty is VR porno. Perhaps in the future these concepts will overlap with each other. After all, not only external beauty is important, but also the satisfaction of one’s fantasies.
For example, today on the Chanel portal you can “make” a virtual make-up and find your ideal lipstick color, try before buying eyeshadow and eyeliner. Through the Dior mobile app, you can choose the most suitable shape of glasses from the catalog. And then, say, go shopping at Walmart, where you can look at a new vase for the living room and use an AR view to see if it fits into your interior. By the way, experts estimate the capacity of the VR and AR market for retail at $10 billion by 2022-2023.
At the same time, when implementing such solutions, there are many questions about intellectual property. For example, what is a virtual thing – is it a computer program or an image? If an image, is it copyrighted? And most importantly, how to protect your own development?
Remember that everything you create can conditionally be divided into technologies and content:
- a VR helmet;
- a virtual fitting room;
- a smart mirror or sneakers;
- a belt;
Using augmented reality are technology, and it can be patented.
Sometimes you can patent a technical solution. It is closer not to the hardware, but to the software part. For example, an image processing method or a virtual clothing creation system.
If you have invented technology, then do a patent search and see if what you have invented is really new. Then apply for a patent at the patent office.
Fashion brands and retailers offer customers to replenish their wardrobe and furnish their homes using virtual and augmented reality.
Even if you do not intend to enter the American or European market now, but you understand that the technology will be popular, patent and then sell the patent. Or let other companies use it under license. This is one way to commercialize your technology.
Another group of objects that can be protected are objects of copyright. Both the image itself and the computer program are protected by copyright. That is, a certain code that reflects the mask or digital clothes on the smartphone. And when you sell clothes to a user, you give them a license to use those clothes.
It imposes many responsibilities, and gives the user new rights in contrast to the standard rights of the consumer. For example, when your client becomes your user, you receive data about its weight, height, body features, etc. Therefore, when creating a mobile application with VR, you need to think about the protection of personal data.
Virtual clothing is not only entertaining and stimulates sales, but also has an environmental aspect. Models are usually in limited supply, appear faster, and promote informed choice among buyers. Accordingly, having previously tried on a virtual model, you can immediately assemble a ready bow from the necessary things, which means that the damage to the environment is less.
What makes AR so attractive to fashion brands? It is an opportunity for buyers, retailers, suppliers to compensate for the experience they are used to in everyday life (going to stores without any restrictions, communicating with consultants) and create a new world that can connect online and offline.