Elle Gets Real with Augmented Reality 

elle-kristen-stewart-ar-coverElle Magazine used a proprietary app to bring a vivid AR experience to readers for their groundbreaking November issue.

Elle magazine is getting real. Their November issue allows readers to use the ElleNow iPhone app to dive into an augmented reality experience.

“In partnership with Huffington Post’s VR division HuffPost RYOT, you will be able to use the ElleNow app and hover your phone over any of the eight covers to watch as the cover face comes to life with a video interview,” explains Jonathan Nafarrete in VRScout.

The video content itself was produced by Elle, while the technology behind it is powered by RYOT and Verizon’s Envrmnt platform. Hearst expects to present more AR covers in the next year, with Elle being the first to launch. And they are wicked smart about it.

“Rather than using a third-party AR app that would take readers outside of Elle’s owned brand experiences, AR functionality was integrated into the ELLENow app that is available for iOS, with Android coming soon,” Nafarrete writes. “The hope for the November AR covers is to deepen the magazine media experience and increase engagement with readers.”

We love the idea of using augmented reality in this way to deepen the engagement with your readers. And we love the idea of using a proprietary app to allow readers to stay within the Elle brand experience. It’s smart thinking at a time when so many publishers are ceding audience control to third-party platforms.

“ELLE is a first-mover in so many ways – it was the first to use beacon technology to drive to retail, and in fact, it was the first fashion magazine to launch a website years ago,” Michael Clinton, Hearst Magazines president of marketing and publishing director, said to Nafarrete. “RYOT’s ability to power augmented reality through our owned-and-operated app opens up so many possibilities, and we’re looking forward to collaborating with RYOT on more of the brands in our portfolio, and to bring the opportunities to our marketing partners as well.”

The whole thing proves once again that you can be smart and beautiful..and printed. Keep on shining, Elle.