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The augmented consumer : Making humans better with Augmented Reality

by | Apr 10, 2021 | News

Drupa, with their recurring Essentials of Print series, delivers a series of articles, from designers, brand owners, printers, converters, journalists and influencers, providing them with a platform to share their opinions on the latest developments of the print industry.

We are honored that they have decided to pick our Co-founder Christophe Bossut to give an inside on the “global trend” of augmented reality for the print community.

A global trend exists today towards enhancing the human senses, evidenced for example in GPS, driving assistance, decision-assistance, automated translation etc. The packaging will not escape from this digital surge, as it becomes “intelligent” and an active communication tool for use by humans whatever their profile: customer, seller, manufacturer, prospect, curious onlooker, controller or regulator. The rapid advance of technologies is such that the scope of possibilities is ever-widening.


[…] Keeping the printing industry in mind – to revolutionise a service, a product or an object requires the total understanding of previous technological developments (their evolution) in order to make it possible to open up new fields of possibility and, in direct commercial terms, to answer the new demands set by the marketing community as ‘brand owners’. Packaging cannot avoid this kind of transformation – nor can commercial print in general. Image recognition and computer vision are two technologies that point to a major revolution in the interaction between humans and packaging.


[…] Augmented reality with print therefore becomes the key point, and later we will talk specifically about the augmented document. If today, it is becoming more and more natural to take out your smartphone to “scan” a barcode, a QR code or even an image in order to obtain information, then you as professionals of the graphics industry have the same opportunity to offer your customers such interactive content benefits.


[…] So, what can I say to you as a graphics industry professionals ahead of virtual.drupa 2021? Be ready, do not doubt or hesitate and really grab the opportunity that this drupa platform represents. The barrier of downloading applications has fallen away, either because the applications become more social or they offer easier access to them. Various information is accessible either because the WebAR no longer requires a simple browser to trigger the camera of your smartphone or because live augmented experiences can be experienced through a website.


virtual.drupa 2021 is the perfect time for you to assess the challenges ahead and the impact of any emerging technologies. virtual.drupa and the touchpoint packaging will offer insights into augmented reality technologies printed onto documents and products. Various conferences will also deal directly with customisation and personalisation for connected consumers and e-commerce.


It’s a safe bet to say that after virtual.drupa, many builders, flow managers and printers will seek the integration of these new editorial flows. Starting with the workshop itself which will take on the augmented document, as key entry point to the connection of different ERP trades.


What’s more natural than connecting a PDF to its stream by increasing HTML5 layers related to manufacturing, commercial, technical and other elements and all this in a blockchain?


What’s more natural than the printed endpiece having the same digital information embedded and directly available by “scanning” the document thanks to image recognition?


What is more natural than letting the different actors access different information depending on their profile?


What could be more natural than transforming the document or the package into a real communication piece with the final recipient, and this way transforming it into a marketing engagement tool?


All these changes open up new markets and will lead to new behaviours by packaging printers, converters and brand-owners. The consolidation of different technologies is leading to the emergence of new channels and usages for the printing and for the packaging industry.

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