26 January 2017


Virtual, augmented and mixed realities have exploded into everyday life over the course of the last year. Following last year’s success of Pokemon Go, the use of AR (Augmented Reality), VR (Virtual Reality) and MR (Mixed Reality) has become mainstream within gaming. New industries and brands are now exploring the opportunities with these technologies.

2016 also saw the explosion of true rapid prototyping of packaging through 3D printing. This cost-reducing technique has allowed a new way for companies to significantly boost their speed to market.


Reality uses in manufacturing

As quality and trust in AR & VR improves, 2017 is likely to open a new frontier in prototyping and trialling which will again allow reduced costs and accelerate development processes.

AR – the ability for brands and retailers to view product on shelf before production – reducing prototype costs and time

VR – the ability for brands and retailers to mimic shopper behaviour to better understand impacts of concept ideas

Reality uses in marketing

Reality platforms will also give brands the opportunity to experiment with engaging consumers in the digital world. Scannable, interactive packaging will become a new testing ground for delivering content to consumers and gaining brand loyalty, but brands must be careful to make material relevant and desired while avoiding gimmicks.


Source: Trendhunter

Source: Trendhunter

The UK’s fourth largest retailer Shop Direct have launched a new AR platform (developed by Cimagine) which allows customers to place full scale, 3D virtual models of Shop Direct products in real life settings.

Using an app and a smartphone, customers can see exactly how the furniture would look in their living rooms or bedrooms without having to enter a showroom.

Source: Adweek.com

Source: Adweek.com

Outdoor recreation brand North Face have used VR to bring the outdoor experiences to the customer within their stores.

Videos such as rock climbing and trekking across the desert are being used to inspire customers and connect with tech-savvy millennials.


The above prediction represents the thoughts of Charta Packaging on what we believe the packaging industry will see in 2017 and onwards.

Not all five forecasts will impact each category, Charta Packaging have further Insights into the more category-relevant trends that we expect to see in 2017. If you would like to discuss trends specific to your category or these over arching macro predictions above, feel free to reach out to us.