Becoming Reality – from AR and VR to the real world

October 12, 2018

After several years on the outer reaches of our radar, augmented and virtual reality are making a move in from the horizon…

Author | Paul Skuse

After several years on the outer reaches of our radar, augmented and virtual reality are making a move in from the horizon. In the interests of clarity, we should confirm that by virtual reality (VR), we are talking about a fully immersive experience, with augmented reality (AR) still allowing you to see your surroundings. With the likes of Apple and Facebook confirming their investment in this technology, it’s clear to see how it’s moving closer towards the mainstream.

An obvious application of this technology for the property market would be virtual showhome tours, as well as the opportunity to point your smartphone towards a building site and see exactly how the finished property would look.

At this point though, the barriers to entry are high costs, bulky headsets and agents needing to run the technology themselves in showhomes. As the market matures, the costs and size of headsets will reduce exponentially. Before long, the kit will resemble a standard pair of glasses. At that point, there will be exciting opportunities to implement the technology at planning stage, with marketing and within the actual showhomes.

Rather than asking a buyer to come to us, we can send the showhome to the buyer. Those traditional Saturday morning viewings can take place anywhere and at any time, day or night.

There are AR tools already available where pointing your smartphone at a floorplan will show a full CGI image of that floor, complete with all walls, doors and furnishings. This helps your buyer to see, not just imagine.

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We see this as a natural progression for marketing in the property sector, as well as an important tool for planning. Step by step the capability of this technology is growing, whilst the costs and barriers to entry are reducing. The speed of change is now happening more rapidly than ever before.

We are in constant communication with our VR and AR partners to help make the most of this technology. As soon as we are confident that the barriers are moved aside, we will start showcasing the opportunities to all our clients.

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