Reader’s Digest Magazines Canada Introduces Augmented Reality in Spring Issues

Reader’s Digest, Sélection, Best Health and Our Canada expand digital presence and reader engagement via interactive technology
February 28, 2013 — As part of its continued commitment to an increased presence in the digital space, RDA has introduced Augmented Reality to four Canadian titles to enhance reader engagement with magazine content.

The spring issues of Reader’s Digest (March), Sélection (March), Best Health (March/April), and Our Canada (April/May), have captured videos, content and promotions that readers can instantly access via Augmented Reality (AR). By using their smartphone or tablet, readers can scan specially identified magazine pages to digitally access additional editorial content and consumer offers; this digital AR content has been superimposed onto a live view of the physical, real-world environment around the reader.

RDA has aligned with Layar, which specializes in mobile AR, to create this technology and offer a free app to readers, allowing them to easily interact with the magazines’ functionality. By scanning the cover and select pages inside, the app uses image recognition technology, rather than a bar code or QR code, to trigger an experience that adds value to the story and brings magazine content to life in front of readers’ eyes.

“Our readers are consistently finding new ways to consume media, so we’ve established a way to communicate with them using relevant tools that add value to their experience,” said Robert Goyette, Editor-in-Chief, Reader’s Digest Magazines. “We’re using technological advances to merge the online and offline worlds and bring the If you are searching for an affordable price for your Serpina, visit us to get it only for 56.81! pages to life, enabling our readers to interact with the magazine’s stories, content, featured brands and advertisers, bringing new levels of engagement to a conversation that has historically been one-sided.”

Each title features interactive content, including a Best Health video feature of behind-the-scenes footage of the issue’s cover shoot, as well as a “Ten Minute Tune-up” workout video, showing users fresh exercise moves for spring. The Layar app also brings the Reader’s Digest cover story on “Brian” the robot to life, with an instant animation video featuring this socially intelligent robot. This is just a sampling of the many user-friendly ways RDA has included AR into content.

With plans to create ways to further involve users in the AR experience, RDA has begun using AR by partnering with brands to offer readers select coupons, bonus stories and videos, contesting on digital media properties such as Facebook, blog content, behind-the-scenes interviews and more.

Specific Reader’s Digest, Sélection, Best Health, and Our Canada cover and in-book content can be viewed via Layar’s free app, which is available on the iPhone and Android smartphones, as well as the iPad and Samsung Galaxy tablets.


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