Builders submit their concepts for bringing VR into the buying experience.

Should you’re something like me, you take into account standard buying to be a grueling job proper up there with visiting the DMV or jury obligation. Okay, perhaps not as unhealthy because the DMV… but it surely’s nonetheless a secular course of.

So why not revitalize the experience by implementing the immersive and interesting expertise of virtual reality? Nicely that’s precisely what Walmart & Arianna Huffington are trying with Innov8, a model new competitors devoted to exploring and investing in immersive ideas able to altering a buyer’s retail experience.

Spearheaded by Walmart’s expertise innovation center and incubator Store No 8 and Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global, in collaboration with Accenture as a strategic innovation advisor, the first-of-its-kind competitors prolonged a nationwide invitation to early-stage builders to submit distinctive ideas that use VR to make buying extra stress-free, environment friendly and interesting.

Individuals had simply two weeks to submit their concepts and now the chosen finalists will likely be invited to an unique exhibition in Los Angeles on October 18. There, the chosen teams may have the chance to rub shoulders with main manufacturers and influencers in addition to current their ideas in an formal setting. 

Judges embody Huffington, Marc Lore of Walmart Ecommerce U.S., Kristen Inexperienced of Forerunner Ventures, and Tipatat Chennavasin of The Venture Reality Fund.  

“Virtual reality creates a presence, a mindfulness, that nothing else today can,” stated Katie Finnegan, Principal of Retailer No eight, in an announcement. “We are looking to leverage virtual reality to drastically enhance the way people shop. Our first step is to identify the most innovative companies and minds in the space to help us on this mission. Innov8 will further define the future of commerce by inspiring and driving growth in the underlying ecosystem of technologies needed to bring shopping into the era of virtual experiences.”

The ultimate winners will obtain capital to assist fund their thought in addition to recommendation through the incubation interval. Chosen builders may also have the chance to work straight with main names similar to Walmart, Jet.com, Thrive World and different influential retailers.

“Right now, we’re in the middle of a cultural shift away from burnout and based on the connection between well-being and performance,” stated Arianna Huffington, Founder and CEO of Thrive World & The Huffington Put up. “The companies that will win the hearts and minds of consumers are those that shape our daily lives by making everyday experiences, like shopping, easier and less stressful. Innov8 will focus the industry’s brightest minds and talent toward the development of virtual experiences that change the way we live for the better.”


It’s heartening to see giant companies settle for and embrace doubtlessly game-changing expertise versus feverishly resisting it. As one of many world’s largest bodily retailers, Walmart is setting the stage for a brand new period of recent buying with this distinctive, doubtlessly groundbreaking competitors. And with companions similar to Arianna Huffington and Accenture of their nook you possibly can anticipate only huge issues on the horizon.

This isn’t the primary time Walmart has experimented with immersive expertise, having launched VR into worker coaching applications at lots of their Walmart Academies

We’ve seen different giant names strategy virtual and augmented reality in their very own distinctive methods, from Lowe’s VR clinic for DIY dwelling enchancment, to Amazon’s AR furniture stores. Hopefully that is simply the beginning of a brand new wave of technology-based sensible buying. Now if they might simply by some means make searching for denims a much less grueling job… 

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