Traditional electronic commerce (e-commerce) is facing a bottleneck because it cannot provide enough direct information about products to online consumers. The technology presented in this paper shows how Augmented Reality (AR) can be used to overcome the bottleneck and enhance e-commerce systems. The study also considers some key implementation issues. An AR e-commerce assistant system was developed, as an Internet plugin, which can be used on different kinds of computers and handheld devices when using the User-Centered Design method. Finally, a usability experiment was designed and a pilot test was also conducted, to compare the AR e-commerce assistant with traditional e-commerce and Virtual Reality (VR) e-commerce systems, and to verify that the AR e-commerce approach can be used to provide more direct information to online consumers. Results show that an AR e-commerce e-commerce system can provide more direct information about products than traditional or VR e-commerce systems.

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