To coincide with the premiere of The Lion King movie in South Africa, retail giant, Ackermans, has partnered with South African animation studio, Sea Monster, along with Disney to bring the movie's merchandise alive using Augmented Reality (AR). From store window displays, through to prints on a number of different garments, shoppers of all ages will get to see fully-animated 3D scenes of their favourite characters coming to life in the real world using the downloadable app’s Augmented Reality capabilities.

Some of the AR activities range from scanning The Lion King pictures on merchandise and displays, through to printing a special colouring-in sheet which kids can scan to trigger a unique scene.

“In-store experiences become less routine and more novel, which is great for consumers and retailers alike. The built-in opportunities for capturing, posing and sharing unique moments also fit right in with the lifestyle of an increasingly tech-savvy and socially-driven population. Plus, from a marketing standpoint, the message is pushed out on social media by consumer authenticity - a valuable commodity in a world where we're used to dealing with targeted messaging at every turn,” said Rodain Joubert, Experience Designer at Sea Monster.

According to Ackermans, this is the first time that direct merchandise scanning using AR is being used in South Africa. There will also be an Ackermans Live app that will be launched officially on 25 July 2019 and is less than 80MB in size. Once downloaded, the user will not incur any further data costs when scanning The Lion King related items in store.

“We needed to consider that the average South African shopper isn’t necessarily carrying a high-end smartphone. For many the Ackermans Live app will be their first introduction to the exciting world of augmented reality, and we carefully selected images we could animate and bring to life, with this in mind,' said Joubert.

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