Amazon In 3D? Is That Useful?

from the gimmick-or-useful? dept

Earlier this year, we talked about getting beyond the “webpage” metaphor when setting up online shopping experiences, and noted how Borders was testing a virtual bookshelf system that seemed more gimmicky than useful. Well, now it appears that Amazon has one-upped Borders by offering WindowShop, a 3D shopping experience… and once again I find myself underwhelmed. While it also has something of a shelf metaphor, it has some advantages in that clicking on any individual “product” can bring up audio, video and text about the product. However, it still feels rather gimmicky rather than useful. For years people have tried to create 3D browsing systems online and they never seem more useful than just straight webpages. In fact, in trying to replicate a 3D environment, it often feels like they’re more limited than what a single webpage could do.

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Companies: amazon

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Comments on “Amazon In 3D? Is That Useful?”

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Overcast says:

Doesn’t sound too useful, really.

It wasn’t as slow as I thought it would be at first, but I’d still prefer the straight-up pages they use now.

Really, when I’m shopping or looking for information, the less frills the better. It’s why I liked Google, but they are even going overboard a bit now. That new layout on iGoogle kinda sucks.

Steve (user link) says:

Missing the Point, I Think

I think you might be missing the point of this service. This is essentially the big display at the front of a record store. It’s not meant to replace the Amazon site, it’s just there to highlight new releases while stimulating the senses, and I think it does a great job of that. Instant previews of movies, games, music and audiobooks and big, beautiful eye-catching graphics are a great way to see what’s new this week in 10 minutes with no clicking, just flying around this very attractive interface. I, for one, like it.

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