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Interactive Annual 18:

Converse: The Sampler

Launch Live Site

“A great branded mobile app that doesn’t try too hard. You get to see which shoes look good on your feet, without lacing up twenty pair.”
—Keith Butters

“A fun app that executes a simple concept very well with inspired use of in-phone cameras.” —David Wright

Overview: Product sampling, mobile shopping and photo sharing in a single, simple app. Shoppers can virtually try on the most popular Converse (updated and managed seasonally) using their iPhones. Users select a shoe and point the iPhone camera at their foot and the app superimposes an image of the shoe over their foot. If people like what they see, they can take a pic and save it, share it or buy the shoes in Converse’s mobile web store; if they don’t, it’s easy enough to try another pair.

  • • The project took ten people nine months to produce and was one of the first projects to include the custom camera-overlay newly-introduced in iOS 3.1.
  • • The app launched with twenty shoes and each shoe had five images for five different angles (front, back, left, right, top).
  • • As of December 15, approximately 551,000 products have been viewed and 41,500 photos have been taken within the app.

Comments by Trevor Eld

What was the thinking behind the concept? “All in all it was a relatively easy project for everyone; just as most good ideas seem to, The Sampler came from a very simple question, ’What if people could try shoes on with their phones?’ It was at least compelling enough to mock up so we got started right away. Two weeks later, we showed up to a client meeting with a working prototype to pitch the idea. That was a good meeting. We then spent the next several months designing, branding and building the app.”

What was the thinking behind the navigation structure? “The design team strived to keep the nav as pure as possible. Simple, flat and standard (swipe to change shoes and pinch to zoom), it gets people to sampling as quickly as possible.”


Jonny Leicht, writer
Kajal Gala, interactive designer
Jen Leartanasan/Yzabelle Munson, design team
Trevor Eld/Tara Greer, creative directors
Ian Spalter, executive creative director
Joseph Lin, engineer
Erik Laurenceau, technology director
Robert Spychala, mobile technology director
Ameer Youssef, producer
Will Creedle, quality assurance
R/GA (New York, NY), project design and development
Tacit Knowledge, development partner
Converse, client

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