IKEA's augmented reality app puts that SÖDERHAMN in the room
Not sure whether to go with the EKTORP or a couple HOVÅS for the corner of the living room? Download the IKEA app and you can see them as they would look in real life—superimposed in 3-D over your phone's view of the room.
The augmented reality approach to testing out IKEA's wackily named furniture is a good idea: You get a sense of the size and color in the room, without having to fiddle with Photoshop or an online tool—or buying the items, of course.
IKEA's approach is simple, or at least as simple as an augmented-reality smartphone app can be. After selecting a piece of furniture, you put the catalog itself on the ground, where it acts as a sort of anchor for the 3-D image of the chair or table. Need to rotate the chairs so they face the window? Rotate the catalog.
The company's playful video demonstrates a few other things you could do with the app.
You can download the free IKEA app for either Android or iOS, though to unlock the augmented-reality feature you'll need a copy of the 2014 catalog, which IKEA will no doubt be happy to send you.
—By Devin Coldewey, NBC News