Argos launches visual search via app

Argos has updated its IoS app with new visual search functionality, letting customers shop for homewares and furniture using images on their smart phone.

Users take a photograph or upload a saved image of their desired item to the app, which instantly searches the entire Argos online catalogue for similar furniture, curtains or homewares. The technology does this by recognising distinctive features such as the shape, colour and style of items in the image.

Visual search works alongside Argos’s existing augmented reality technology, which lets customers digitally place products such as sofas and TVs into their own homes using the app to assess the look, size and fit before buying.

Argos’s aim is to extend the visual search functionality to customers using the paper catalogue in the future, where the app could surface products to complement items customers find on its pages.

Mark Steel, digital director at Argos, said: “Customers are increasingly using social media platforms, such as Instagram and Pinterest, as a source of inspiration, so visual search has the potential to transform how we shop for the home.

“The future potential for visual search is really exciting as it has the ability to break down language barriers and offer those with disabilities an easy way to find what they need online,” he continued, adding: “We’re also exploring how we can use it to help bridge the gap between our physical catalogue and digital channels, offering customers a truly integrated way to shop.”

Last year, Argos launched a voice shop service enabling customers to reserve 20,000 products using voice technology on the Google Assistant.

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