The retail industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by desire for convenience and the growing importance of technologies such as artificial Intelligence, digitisation, and augmented reality. In the last three years alone, there have been over 133,000 patents filed and granted in the retail industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Virtual Reality in Retail: Virtual try-on platforms. Buy the report here.

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According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 128,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the retail industry, there are 70+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Virtual try-on platforms are a key innovation area in virtual reality

Virtual try-on platforms enable consumers to try products such as clothing, jewellery, and makeup virtually, using their phones or tablets, through augmented reality (AR).

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established retail companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of virtual try-on platforms.

Key players in virtual try-on platforms – a disruptive innovation in the retail industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to virtual try-on platforms

Company Total patents (2010 - 2022) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
eBay 66 Unlock Company Profile
Metail 63 Unlock Company Profile
Levi Strauss & Co 60 Unlock Company Profile
Magic Leap 45 Unlock Company Profile
Toshiba 34 Unlock Company Profile 28 Unlock Company Profile
Carl Zeiss Stiftung 25 Unlock Company Profile
EcoSense Lighting 25 Unlock Company Profile
adidas 21 Unlock Company Profile
Samsung Group 19 Unlock Company Profile
Houzz 17 Unlock Company Profile
Zazzle.Com 14 Unlock Company Profile
Rakuten Group 14 Unlock Company Profile
SoftBank Group 12 Unlock Company Profile
MISUMI Group 10 Unlock Company Profile
Crisalix 10 Unlock Company Profile
Microsoft 9 Unlock Company Profile 8 Unlock Company Profile
Specsavers Optical Group 8 Unlock Company Profile
Zeekit Online Shopping 8 Unlock Company Profile
Signify 8 Unlock Company Profile
Jins Holdings 8 Unlock Company Profile
Baidu 7 Unlock Company Profile
Capital One Financial 7 Unlock Company Profile
Marxent Labs 7 Unlock Company Profile
Seiren 7 Unlock Company Profile
Huawei Investment & Holding 6 Unlock Company Profile
MicroD 6 Unlock Company Profile
Wormhole Labs 5 Unlock Company Profile 5 Unlock Company Profile
Meta Platforms 5 Unlock Company Profile
swatchbook 5 Unlock Company Profile
Sony Group 5 Unlock Company Profile
International Business Machines 5 Unlock Company Profile
Holition 5 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

The leading patent filers in the virtual try-on platforms space are eBay Inc, Metail, Levi Strauss, Magic Leap, Toshiba and Amazon. In June 2022, Amazon announced Virtual Try-On for shoes, which will allow shoppers to see how the shoes will look on them from multiple angles by using their mobile phone’s camera, before they buy the product.

Magic Leap, Levi Strauss, Sony Group, EcoSense Lighting, Meta Platforms and Rakuten Group are the leading companies, in terms of application diversity.

In terms of geographic reach, MISUMI Group, Carl Zeiss Stiftung, Specsavers Optical Group, Crisalix, Zeekit Online Shopping and Signify are the top players.  

Virtual try-on technology helps customers to try on an online product in real-time before buying through AR and AI-enabled technologies. Retailers like IKEA and Wayfair have leveraged augmented reality and visualisation tools allowing shoppers to virtually try the products before buying them.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the retail industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Virtual & Augmented Reality in Retail.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.