Toys R Us adds augmented reality to holiday catalog

Toys R Us is issuing its annual holiday catalog—The Great Big Toys R Us Book of Awesome—in a new interactive edition that lets kids play a game with the company's most famous character, Geoffrey the giraffe.

The 96-page gift guide is shipping to homes this week and uses augmented reality technology to let kids interact and play with various toys and characters.

Kids can download the game in an app and then take a closer look at their favorite toys by zooming in, spinning or walking around pages of the book for different angles, and can also capture photos within the game. The app encourages players to find Geoffrey, who is hiding in gift boxes along with other characters.

Once a player has found Geoffrey in all eight scenes, parents can enter Geoffrey's Awesome Christmas Sweepstakes for a chance to win prizes.

"The arrival of The Great Big Toys R Us Book of Awesome marks the kickoff of the time-honored tradition of children eagerly studying pages upon pages of the year's hottest toys, curating their must-have lists for Christmas morning," said Richard Lennox, senior VP and chief marketing officer of Toys R Us, U.S. "This catalog is the centerpiece of our holiday marketing efforts."

An abbreviated catalog, which features 48 pages of kid-favorite toys, is now available online at and will be in local newspapers on Saturday, Oct. 31.

Augmented reality is increasingly popular this holiday season. Retailers such as Target are leveraging the new technology to increase the impact of printed materials, and in some case, making static pages easily shoppable.

Toys R Us added visual search through a partnership with Slyce in May. The technology lets users take an image of a product with a smartphone to search for the same or similar item. It's all part of the retailer's TRU Transformation, a five-year plan to increase revenue and profits as outlined in 2014.

For more:
-See this Toys R Us announcement

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