UK department store chain John Lewis & Partners has announced it will trial a virtual reality retail experience, Visualise Your Space, to help customers envision new products in their homes before they buy.

Visualise Your Space will work in three steps. Customers can input data such as the dimensions of their chosen room and the location of doors and windows into an iPad via an app, and then visit John Lewis to view products and compare. Customers will also be able to change the colour of the walls and floors to complete their chosen interior look.

Every redesigned room will be able to be viewed as a 3D room set in augmented reality, either via an iPad or via a virtual reality headset, which customers can wear and ‘walk around’ the room with. Every customer will be emailed a copy of their redesigned room, with links to purchase included.

The virtual reality retail experience will be trialled at three John Lewis & Partners’ stores – Kingston on 26 June, Cambridge on 28 June and Horsham on 2 July.

John Lewis partner and head of buying for furniture and flooring Caitlin Price said: “Designing a new look for a room can be a lot of fun and a chance to express our personalities.  However, customers tell us that uncertainty about what new products will look like in their home can make the decision making hard, and in many cases people revert to the safer tones of grey or beige furnishings.

“This new technology will enable customers to be braver in their choices, and test technology that architects and interior designers have been using to visualise their designs.”

Marxent CEO and co-founder Beck Besecker said: “The technology has been developed by the US based, design and 3D visualisation company Marxent. John Lewis understands how important inspiration is to modern furniture shoppers and has an impressive history of innovation. We’re proud to be partnering with them to test this technology in the UK.”