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Due to issues with the recording, there is unfortunately no video for The Next Evolution of Retail & Ecommerce.

06/07/2023 – About the Topic

One of the more common consumer uses of immersive technology are augmented reality product placement and virtual try-on capabilities used in ecommerce. Join us June 7th to learn about what we should expect in the near future and from those defining the best practices in The Next Evolution of Retail & Ecommerce.

Let’s face it, we buy things every day. How we buy, what we buy, where we buy, and who we buy from is what drives the retail and ecommerce industries. Like most industries, immersive technologies – virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) – have a lot to offer the retail industry. VR can enable consumers to shop from the comfort of their homes, exploring virtual stores, visualizing products in 3D, and viewing hundreds or thousands of products without the need to travel physically from one location to another. AR allows for cell phone, computer, or even smart mirror based virtual try-on of everything from eye glasses to clothes to makeup, or contextually placing furniture or art in the physical space where it will exist following a purchase. Beyond just the sale or purchase, some companies are offering AR & VR based tutorials on how to install, assemble, use, or troubleshoot products following a purchase as well. There’s even XR based brand engagement activities helping to keep consumers connected to the brands they love.

How do you like to shop? Do these innovations reel you in or set you reeling? Join the conversation about VR & AR: The Next Evolution of Retail & Ecommerce – something we are all experts at: how we (want to) consume items in the modern day.

Panel Members

The Next Evolution Hosts

Matt Wren will be moderating the discussion in person while Caroline Dennis will be hosting the virtual portion in Virbela. Matt is the CTO for BUNDLAR and founder of The Next Evolution event series and VRAR Chicago. Caroline is entrepreneur, startup advisor, and advocate from and XRWomen.

What’s the Format

Times in Central Daylight Time (CDT)
5:30-8:30pm at 1871 for the In-Person Program
6:00-8:00pm in Virbela for the Virtual Program
5:30-6:15pm – Networking & Technology Demonstrations
6:15-6:30pm – Introductions & Welcome
6:30-7:10pm – Panelist Presentations
7:10-7:45pm – Panel Discussion with Q&A
7:45-8:30pm – Networking & Technology Demonstrations

We will start with informal networking, then host a panel discussion to answer audience questions, and we end with more networking. We keep it simple and informal – this meetup is about you, our members, and not just a soap box for the host, presenters, or our sponsors. Come and get your questions answered, take your next step in Immersive Technology.

Attending The Next Evolution

Attending in-Person

1871 | 222 W Merchandise Mart Plz | Suite 1212

For our Physical Venue, 1871 can be found in Suite 1212 on the 12th floor of theMART, which is located on the North side of the river between Wells and Orleans. For easy access, enter through the Orleans entrance on the west side of theMART and take those elevators to the 12th floor.

There is no longer a Covid-19 vaccination requirement.

Watching the Live Stream

Primary Live Stream |

People can join by watching the scheduled live stream where we will field questions from!

You will need to register to gain access to AWE.Live.

Attending Virtually

Virbela | Virtual Environment |

We encourage folks to join us in the virtual environment Community Hall by downloading the Virbela open campus client at See more about getting started and navigating Virbela here.

The Virbela virtual environment resembles a physical space, so you will be able to talk with other attendees prior to the start of the presentations. To get to the Community Hall once in Virbela, you click the GO TO menu on the top left of your screen >> Pavilion >> The Next Evolution Hall. We suggest that you arrive no later than 6:00pm and we will get started promptly at 6:15. Please try to get familiar with the technology prior to the day of the meetup, as we will be unable to provide support during the event.

win a prize collecting nfts from attending

Through a partnership with Vennity, we will be creating unique NFT Badges to collect by attending 2023 The Next Evolution programs. Each badge you claim counts towards an end of year drawing for a prize to be given out in December 2023.

thank you to our sponsors

thank you to our supporting partners