IKEA's augmented reality app puts that SÖDERHAMN in the room

Ikea app
The app works on Android and iOS devices.

Not sure whether to go with the EKTORP or a couple HOVÅS for the corner of the living room? Download the IKEA app and you can see them as they would look in real life — superimposed in 3-D over your phone's view of the room.

The augmented reality approach to testing out IKEA's wackily named furniture is a good idea: You get a sense of the size and color in the room, without having to fiddle with Photoshop or an online tool — or buying the items, of course.

IKEA's approach is simple, or at least as simple as an augmented reality smartphone app can be. After selecting a piece of furniture, you put the catalogue itself on the ground, where it acts as a sort of anchor for the 3-D image of the chair or table. Need to rotate the chairs so they face the window? Rotate the catalogue.

The company's playful video demonstrates a few other things you could do with the app:

You can download the free IKEA app for either Android or iOS, though to unlock the augmented reality feature you'll need a copy of the 2014 catalogue, which IKEA will no doubt be happy to send you.

Devin Coldewey is a contributing writer for NBC News Digital. His personal website is