DOI: 10.1002/mar.21884 ISSN:

The role of emotions in augmented reality

Pei‐Shan Soon, Weng Marc Lim, Sanjaya Singh Gaur
  • Marketing
  • Applied Psychology


Augmented reality (AR) can induce emotions among its users. However, emotional valence is often studied with a singular focus (e.g., enjoyment), which disregards and overlooks the multifaceted nature of emotional valence. Taking a multifaceted perspective of emotional valence, this study aims to broaden understanding of how induced emotions can drive consumers’ inclination to use AR. A multifaceted emotion measurement scale was modified and utilized (nStudy1: 224), followed by two experimental studies (nStudy2: 214; nStudy3: 200). These experiments entailed a design wherein the experimental group explored products using an AR app while the control group navigated the mobile website of the same company devoid of any AR features. Our findings indicate that the use of AR instigates expressive emotions, further eliciting emotion components spanning both affective and physiological dimensions. In instances of positive emotions, at least two out of the three elicited emotion components consistently led to a heightened desire to engage with AR. Negative emotions produce no significant effects. Taken collectively, the principal theoretical contribution of this study lies in its elucidation of the components and elicitation patterns of emotions tied to AR, whereas the practical standpoint of these findings underscores the necessity for both developers and marketers to comprehend the pivotal role that the induction of positive expressive emotions plays in designing effective AR apps. These insights should therefore pave the way for more intuitively engaging and emotionally satisfying AR experiences for consumers.

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