Six Hundred Four is a new sneaker brand that creates shoes based off commissioned art pieces and recently they launched the world’s first virtual reality (VR) sneaker store. This store is a harmoniously merge of VR and e-commerce that can be explored without the need for a head-mounted display (HMD).
The experience allows virtual visitors to explore the store at their own pace, viewing the original art pieces while effortlessly adding shoes to their shopping cart. As it does not require a HMD to be viewed, users can explore the Six Hundred Four’s flagship store in their web browser or on a mobile device within a standalone headset.
As the Six Hundred Four retail space is both an art gallery and a shoe store, coined as a “Sneaker Gallery”, this produced a minimalist aesthetic that made it ideal for being brought over to VR. There are even little “Easter Eggs” within the virtual store that allow visitors to claim an exclusive discount.
James Lepp, the founder of Six Hundred Four, explains, “Typical VR experiences are limiting because they require a headset. You can’t type with a headset, and frankly, most people don’t even have one. We didn’t want to have those constraints. Instead, our experience can be used anywhere, any time, on any device.”
Leep continuances by state that communicating Six Hundred Four’s business model to in-store visitors is easy while online visitors prove to be a challenge. “You won’t find a brand like ours anywhere else in the world, so the concept is new to all of our visitors. In the store, we can enlighten you as we guide you around. Online, however, it hasn’t been so easy. With this virtual store, online visitors will gain much more insight into what we do. At least that’s the hope.”
To create the virtual store Six Hundred Four partners with Method Visual, a leader in 360 photography and VR. Tim Enos, owner of Method Visual, asserts that, “What’s most exciting is that nearly everybody can experience it right now, with practically no learning curve. It’s intuitive, clean, user-friendly, and this is just the start.” Both Enos and Lepp plan on improving the technology as more people continue to adopt VR in the future. “Our plan is to open up real galleries all over the world,” explains Lepp, “but depending on where VR goes, maybe it will be more virtual galleries instead of physical ones.”