Wayfair launches 3D University to speed up industry adoption

Wayfair topline furnitureA digitally rendered lifestyle image and 3D model on Wayfair.com (product from Top-Line Furniture)

BOSTON — Home furnishings e-commerce giant Wayfair has launched Wayfair 3D University, offering an industry-tailored curriculum of 3D-modeling in an attempt to speed up suppliers’ cost-effective adoption of standards for the imagery used in AR and VR applications.

The university, residing on the company’s technology blog, is designed to accelerate the industry’s use of 3D imagery in visual merchandising, offering core fundamentals, best-in-class software recommendations and in-depth tutorials for creating photorealistic 3D models of furniture and décor, the Boston-based company said.

According to a Wayfair spokesperson, the e-tailer has tens of thousands of 3D models on its site currently, and the vast majority are produced by Wayfair. In an introduction to the new program online, Wayfair said its team currently creates “thousands of high quality 3D models and images a month at a fraction of the cost of traditional 2D photography.”

“As the leader in home, we are committed to pioneering new technologies and standards that will drive our entire industry forward,” Wayfair Co-founder and Co-chairman Steve Conine said in a release.

“Shopping for home starts with inspiration and discovery, and as shoppers continue to shift online, 3D content will serve as the foundation for visual merchandising as well as innovative applications such as AR and VR.”

The new Wayfair resources can help suppliers to show and sell their product not only on Wayfair.com, but other retail sites or applications, too, he said.

Wayfair said its team of technologists, 3D stylists and artists “are constantly experimenting and refining the best possible approach to creating 3D models quickly, efficiently and at scale.” The offering of core fundamentals, software recommendations and in-depth tutorials, is open to the community. Suppliers also can sign up for feedback and individualized instruction.

Developers can get information about accessing to the application programming interface by emailing Next3dApi@wayfair.com.

Andrea Ware, 3D artist with Top-Line Furniture, one of the first participants in the program, said the University “provides a clear standard for creating high-quality models of furniture and décor.”

She added, “We look forward to accelerating our 3D-modeling efforts, allowing us to bring our products to life in new and compelling ways.”

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