The paper investigates two augmented reality (AR) applications and corresponding consumer responses to their media characteristics. Firstly, it discusses the role of interactivity with AR technology. Secondly, it introduces augmentation as a salient media characteristic of AR applications and tests measurement items of perceived augmentation. Two experimental studies replicate the research design of van Noort et al. (2012), applying it in the context of AR. The results show that perceived augmentation represents a fitting concept for understanding consumer responses to AR features and, furthermore, that flow mediates effects of perceived augmentation on consumers’ affective responses and behavioral intentions. AR features on the other hand do not increase perception of interactivity. Finally, implications of the study and further research directions are discussed.
Keywords: Augmented reality, Augmentation, Interactivity, Flow, Affective responses, Behavioral intentions
Summary statement of contribution
This research represents an early study of augmented reality (AR) in consumer behavior and is the first to show that consumers perceive the AR features to create a convincing simulation of objects in real-time. Two experimental studies confirm that this perceived augmentation affects attitudes towards the application, as well as revisit and repurchase intentions, and that these effects are mediated by flow. However, AR applications at this stage are not perceived to be more interactive than non-AR applications.