Here’s Some Cool Augmented Reality Tech Designed to Stop Merch Counterfeiting
Though they occupy the cellar of the Western Conference, the NHL's Los Angeles Kings still compete as a major market squad, thus making their merchandise a hot commodity on the West Coast. That popularity has spawned an increased desire for fans to own game-used equipment, and has prompted the organization to pioneer an application that proves goods’ authenticity. It might seem odd that a hockey franchise is the first to employ augmented reality anti-counterfeiting tech for merchandise, but here we are, and it's pretty cool.
A big shout out to our friends at @ICETOWN_ for hosting our pro stock jersey and equipment sale over the weekend! And thank you to all that came out to pick up their @lakings pro stock gear! Look out for another sale coming soon! pic.twitter.com/WoCYDH2FeH
— LA Kings Game-Used (@LAKingsGameUsed) February 19, 2019
The website for the game-used items reveals a nice variety of products for hockey fans to inspect and purchase, with the selections dating back to the 2016-17 season. That slate and the others since the Kings captured the franchise’s second Stanley Cup title in 2014 have been a mix of highs and lows, with two first-round playoff losses and a pair of failures to qualify for the postseason marking their ledger. No matter, the team has a loyal fan base that fills the Staples Center to 98.6 percent capacity, and those followers, dating back to the Cup years, have been common prey for folks hawking counterfeit merchandise. Through a discussion with Fox Business, team executive Kelly Cheeseman noted that such manipulation will end, if he has his say, thanks to augmented reality.
The @LAKings are taking the ice tonight in the newly unveiled silver jerseys for the first time! Pre-order yours now and watch your favorite player play in YOUR JERSEY for the remainder of the season. Get them before they’re gone >> https://t.co/KeIERUZbDp pic.twitter.com/JUXokrvFwJ
— LA Kings Game-Used (@LAKingsGameUsed) November 25, 2018
“When you’re talking about high-end merchandise like that at such a high retail price, you need to know it’s real,” he said to the station of the cons that can occur.
We have commonly covered the NFL’s concerns over counterfeit products, so it is interesting to add the NHL to the mix. Cheeseman and others are doing that through an app that relies on a video to prove, or disprove, the item as the real thing. Since it's easy to duplicate holograms and certificates of authenticity, he is hoping that the Kings, as they look to return to contender status on the ice, do not disappoint supporters when no contest is occurring.
That’s Selke number ✌🏼for our captain @AnzeKopitar! Now is your chance to own the gear he wore on ice during his 2017-18 Selke campaign. Get yours now before it’s gone >>https://t.co/kqwEdNjyEL pic.twitter.com/uu2j6SJQqz
— LA Kings Game-Used (@LAKingsGameUsed) June 21, 2018
Along with addressing numerous efforts to rid different markets of bogus products, Promo Marketing has addressed the benefits of augmented reality, so through this application, the Kings are uniting the endeavors so as to do their part to sustain integrity in the vendor-buyer world. Since the hockey franchise is continually adding interesting goods to the website, the application figures to be a frequent component of the fan experience, and could come to find itself duplicated by other teams, especially as the playoffs loom.
Perhaps it could even become applicable across other sports since, as Fox Business noted, fans are not only interested in contemporary goods, but also aged products that they could call on as collectors. Maybe, as well, said application could have applications in the broader branded merchandise world, with concert merch and other limited-edition offerings coming to mind.