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CSA Q&A: Macy’s enables virtual AR try-on at in-store Disney shop

Macy's Disney AR mirror
Macy's offers an AR mirror at its Disney shop-in-store in Herald Square.

Macy’s is deploying augmented reality to enhance the shopping experience of a Disney in-store shop at its Herald Square flagship in New York City.

In a recent conversation with Chain Store Age, Iman El Khatib, VP of merchandising strategy at Macy’s, explained the rationale behind an activation of Zero10 virtual try-on technology at the Disney Princess Shop in the flagship.

An AR-enabled mirror installed in the Disney Princess Shop showcases digital Disney dresses, providing customers with an immersive virtual try-on experience. The Zero10 AR Mirror solution runs on a supercomputer that leverages complex computer vision models in real time and renders clothing in 4k resolution. 

When a user interacts with AR Mirror, Zero10 computer vision algorithms estimate the user's body shape and position in space, producing an accurate 3D model of the user in three-dimensional space. AR-based cloth simulation helps to replicate the behavior of the virtual clothing and render it onto the screen.

Other retailers including JD Sports and Coach have also utilized Zero10 AR-based try-on solutions in campaigns at select stores. 

What made Macy’s decide to pilot in-store AR technology with Disney?

In celebration of Disney’s 100th anniversary, Macy’s created the Disney Princess Shop, bringing to life the Disney Princess experience in our flagship location, Herald Square, just in time for the 2023 holiday season. 

Disney had utilized the AR mirror experience in other Disney Shops in the past. Our decision to pilot in-store AR technology was influenced by the desire to create an immersive and engaging shopping experience for our customers during the holiday season.

Why did Macy’s and Disney select Zero10?

We partnered with Zero10 because of their expertise in engineering augmented reality experiences. Their technology and capabilities were the right fit for the creative direction we hoped to achieve.

How did the pilot proceed?

The project moved quickly to market within less than eight weeks of the initial conversation and Zero10 achieved the results that we were anticipating. Overall, the activation was a huge success and we have been thrilled with the results. We saw incredible engagement results that directionally gave us promise that the customers were reacting favorably to the installation.

Are there any future plans for AR technology at Macy’s?    

Macy's is committed to creating immersive shopping experiences and has a history of embracing innovative technologies to enhance the customer experience.

Macy’s experiments with metaverse

In addition to integrating AR-enabled experiences into the physical store space, Macy’s is also testing out an immersive virtual shopping environment in the metaverse. 

In November 2023, the retailer rolled out mstylelab, a new metaverse environment accessible by consumers via any device or browser. Customers can join the virtual community, create their user name, collect a personalized digital item, and engage with a changing series of activations, based on the metaverse technology platform Journee.

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