Amazon has found another way to keep shoppers busy with the boxes that show up at their door. The company is now rolling out packaging that comes to life with an augmented reality app.

graphical user interface, website: The Amazon Augmented Reality app in action. (App Store Images)

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The Amazon Augmented Reality app in action. (App Store Images)

The free “Amazon Augmented Reality” app is aimed at creating “interactive, sharable AR experiences — delivered wherever you are,” according to the description in the App Store. Tech Crunch reported on the launch of the product on Monday.

Users who download the app (iOS, Android) just need to point a mobile device at the QR code on the side of an Amazon box to start playing in AR. In App Store images and an accompanying video (below), a Halloween pumpkin drawn on the side of the box is shown as a floating, interactive design. (If you haven’t received a box with the new capability yet, Amazon posted a way to test it here.)

It’s another way Amazon is encouraging shoppers to get creative with its cardboard boxes as part of the “Less Packaging, More Smiles” initiative. QR codes this summer directed users to instructions on how to make such creations as a cat fort or robot costume.

Amazon has been using augmented reality as part of safety measures deployed during the ongoing pandemic. A “Distance Assistant” unveiled in June users sensors and a large screen display as well as an AR circle overlaid onto the feet of passing warehouse workers to determine if they are practicing proper social distancing.

Amazon also expanded its AR shopping tools with the release of “Room Decorator,” which lets users place multiple augmented pieces of furniture into a room.

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