Taking video out of the box

December 11, 2006 by Dave Haynes

I forget how I came across this video, but wanted to share it – as it is very cool.

This is from a Puma store in Germany, and features a very large cat loafing about above the sales racks, and not confined by a screen.

The method is called FreeFormat and comes from a Danish company, though the integrator here is the UK firm MediaZest, which judging by the website is doing a lot of unconventional stuff.

As to how this is done, I don’t know for sure and the explanations I have read are quite vague, having to do with projectots and patented film. I strongly suspect green-screens, though. 

ViZoo, the company that came up with the Free Format technology, says it “…blends two universes (virtual and real space) achieving a completely different third effect…we’re borrowing the veracity of the physical world by setting our video pixels up in an actual space.” 

Oh … OK … got it. Right. 

  1. Fastman says:

    I don’t get how this persuades the consumer into making a purchase.
    Should I buy some new Puma shoes because theres a 3D cat crawling around the store?
    Sure its cool and may generate some traffic and can’t hurt the brand but ..

  2. screenmedia says:

    I have met with retail design people who talk alot about the overall customer experience in a store, and I would consider this sort of thing part of that. The theory, very roughly, is if a piece of technology makes a store seem particularly cool, at least some shoppers more prone to buying because that cool factor is transferred.

    Things like carpeting and expensive fixtures also don’t expressly help move SKUs, but they enhance the overall shopper experience.

  3. Adrian Cotterill says:

    Cool but I agree 100% with Fastman, how does it help the consumer or the retailer in any way at all ?

  4. Thanks for the interest in our Company. We have a wide range of holographic, 3D and conventional technologies all aimed at attracting and communicating with customers. The sales data proves the model and in many cases the retailers use our systems to build awareness, create footfall as well as learning how to roll out digital media.
    More details can be found on our website including a video of our stand at the In-store Marketing Show…. http://www.mediazest.com

  5. Bryan Crotaz says:

    This system was installed originally in Puma in Kingly Court in central London by DDC (Barry Skinner went from there to Media Zest when it folded). The original installation (according to my conversation with Mr Skinner some years ago now) cost £150k and involved setting up a studio set that matched the store exactly, then walking a puma around it with a camera in the same position as the eventual projector. Match the lenses, motorise the projector (think scanspot here) and Bob’s your proverbial… It looked ok, if a little less than bright in sunlight.

    To my mind, a cool quarter of a million sold very effectively to the store, but I’d be surprised if it sold many shoes! Let’s see the numbers, guys?

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