Playboy Netherlands Magazine Adds Augmented Reality Mobile App

Bob Johnson

AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands — The Netherlands edition of Playboy magazine is now incorporating a new augmented reality (AR) mobile app that lets readers scan pages with their mobile device, bringing the pages to life.

The interactive print technology from mobile augmented reality firm Layar, enhances several pages of the magazine with videos, image carousels, custom links and even newly introduced HTML widgets.

“We have a great amount of content but we are limited to the 114 pages of the magazine. With Layar, we virtually have an unlimited amount of possibilities to publish extra content,” editor-in-chief Patrick Goldsteen said. “The cover would normally be static, but since the cover now consists of a video the readers can see their favorite models move, talk and interact with them.”

Playboy Netherlands has a circulation of more than 40,000. In addition to its deal with Layar, the publication will be working with partner Limebizz to add interactive print content to each of its issues going forward.

In the inaugural issue, readers can vote for their favorite Playmate of the last year to decide who becomes Playmate of the Year for 2012. The magazine’s cover includes three nominees — Beau, Nadine and Lotte — who “come to life to entice voting.” Inside the issue, last year’s winner — Zimra — introduces readers to the interactive magazine in a video with a secret page giving readers a look at exactly what made Zimra last year’s winner.

“We are more than thrilled to be working together with Playboy to provide an engaging digital reader experience in print,” Layar CEO Quintin Schevernels said. “The continued commitments of such internationally iconic magazine brands are marking the arrival of interactive print as a viable solution for print publishers.”

Goldsteen said in a Layar blog that the majority of the Playboy readers are young adults within the 18-30 range who grew up in the digital age and their mobile device can almost be seen as their most precious asset. “So we bring them extra content in a manner they understand on a device the love to use.”

Future plans call for continued experiments with Layar and new creative possibilities. “It’s for sure that this won’t be a one-of-a-kind Playboy edition, this will be our second content layer for the magazine, and we are looking forward to creating these extra experiences for our readers,” Goldsteen said.