Canadian Packaging

AR may have a short shelf-life

By Canadian Packaging staff   

General AR AR Packaging Augmented reality GlobalData Yili Weikezi milk drink

Augmented reality packaging works well for short-term promotional campaigns according to GlobalData.

Augmented reality (AR), which blends the real and virtual world together, has emerged as one of the most exciting technologies in the intelligent packaging space for several food and drinks brands.

However, despite the initial novelty of AR packaging, it is unlikely that a lot brands will incorporate it into their products, according to leading data and analytics company GlobalData.

AR packaging is a marketing technique in which an interactive element will be incorporated in packaging to stand out from competitors and drive sales.

Yili Weikezi, a milk drink in China, had recently introduced a unique take to packaging within the milk industry. Partnered with popular singer Han Lu, the packaging incorporates a digital voiceprint which consumers can scan with a smart phone to play audio messages creating a more immersive experience.


The technology allows brands to deliver an immersive experience to consumers through a potentially low investment. The majority of the cost revolves around the initial app development and graphic designs. It does not entail additional materials, avoids any major package or production redesigns and can be incorporated into any existing products.

However, consumers would lose interest in AR packaging relatively quickly, particularly if it was readily available all of the time. It would need to be continually refreshed and even then the novelty would likely wear off.

Similarly, if a lot of brands have AR packaging the benefit of being able to stand out from the competition is reduced.

In addition, the effects of AR are not easily measured and can be quite subjective. According to GlobalData’s 2016 Q3 survey, 41 percent of consumers globally said that they are rarely/never influenced by ‘digitally advanced/smart’ aspects of food products.

GlobalData consumer analyst Ryan Choi says: “If consumers do not want to engage this way, it may not be worth the hassle for brands as the costs could outweigh the benefits.

“AR packaging works well for short term promotional campaigns either for one brand or in partnerships with others. Nevertheless, AR packaging offers brands a marketing tool, allowing for a highly innovative and immersive experience – and this will define the success of AR packaging campaigns during the short term they are used.”

About GlobalData
4,000 of the world’s largest companies, including over 70 percent of FTSE 100 and 60 percent of Fortune 100 companies, make more timely and better business decisions thanks to GlobalData’s unique data, expert analysis and innovative solutions, all in one platform. GlobalData’s mission is to help our clients decode the future to be more successful and innovative across a range of industries, including the healthcare, consumer, retail, financial, technology and professional services sectors. For more information, visit


Stories continue below

Print this page

Related Stories

Category Captains 2024