Mountain Hardwear, under parent company Columbia Sportswear Company
(Nasdaq: COLM), announces its development of an augmented reality-based
RICHMOND, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–This month, Mountain Hardwear (MHW) launches an augmented reality
shopping app, featuring its completely redesigned equipment line.
Leading up to this launch, MHW identified several obstacles when
shopping for technical gear that could be alleviated by the use of
Augmented Reality: limited time to visit retail stores, difficulty of
in-store setup, store availability, and guesswork of online assets.
“We believe the ability to superimpose digital products and information
on a user’s actual environment will change retail,” says Snow Burns, VP
of Global Marketing. “We don’t see technology as contrary to getting
outside, we see it as an opportunity to enhance the experience.”
And while many have been quick to jump on the AR bandwagon, these apps
commonly have confusing user interfaces and low-quality imagery. MHW
sought to execute solutions with the highest level of visual fidelity.
With the help of Transparent House, a creative agency based in San
Francisco, California, AR renders of MHW’s products feel as if they’re
right in front of you. “We believe technology is something that should
be thoughtfully applied, not used because it is trendy,” says David
Scott Van Woert, Director of Business Development.
These renderings are not only indistinguishable from photography, they
enable users to easily toggle between environments and features, making
it more lifelike than ever. “We use real-time lighting and shadows only
when necessary and employ rigorous quality control to maintain
consistency across all imagery,” Scott Van Woert adds. “The result is an
app that is as enjoyable to look at as it is intuitive to use.”
This optimization of photorealistic visualization is especially critical
for consumers in the technical products market. “We have a finite amount
of time in our busy days. And as climbers, we’d rather spend those
waking moments enjoying what we love,” Jeff Brandon, Associate Director
of Brand Deployment, explains. “This technology enables a more informed
gear-shopping experience in a fraction of the time.”
Download the fully functional app and start experiencing augmented
reality outfitting by visiting www.mountainhardwear.com/ar.
MHW will continue to roll out additional assets to expand its virtual
gear closet. Users can expect to see the addition of technical apparel
such as their GORE-TEX snow sports collection—a partnership that puts
MHW first to develop a user-friendly AR experience for outerwear—and a
special application in retail environments.
ABOUT MOUNTAIN HARDWEAR:
Mountain Hardwear, Inc., founded in 1993 and based in Richmond, CA, is a
wholly-owned subsidiary of Columbia Sportswear Company that distributes
its products through specialty outdoor retailers in the United States
and 34 countries worldwide. We build essential equipment for climbers,
mountaineers, and outdoor athletes and have supported expeditions on the
world’s highest peaks. This level of technical precision continues to
inspire everything we do. Our designers challenge every stitch and
detail to continuously improve both function and comfort.
ABOUT COLUMBIA SPORTSWEAR COMPANY:
Columbia Sportswear Company has assembled a portfolio of brands for
active lives, making it a leader in the global active lifestyle apparel,
footwear, accessories, and equipment industry. Founded in 1938 in
Portland, Oregon, the company’s brands are today sold in approximately
90 countries. In addition to the Columbia® brand, Columbia Sportswear
Company also owns the Mountain Hardwear®, SOREL® and prAna® brands. To
learn more, please visit the company’s websites at www.columbia.com,