It’s 7:00 a.m. Sunday morning. You wake up, fix coffee, and check your iPhone for emails and messages. BOOM…….
In a flash, you are transported to bright azure skies and the serenade of gently lapping turquoise waves. You find yourself staring at an oceanfront residence onto the most gorgeous ribbon of beach you’ve ever seen and it’s time for a tour.
Welcome the world of Augmented Reality (AR), an increasingly sophisticated technology that allows people to fully immerse and participate in highly visceral experiences like never before.
One moment you are in your den drinking coffee, the next, you are on a lush Caribbean island, figuratively speaking. The reality of the experience is, well…. real.
This is the power of Augmented Reality (AR), which has made tremendous strides in recent years thanks to advances by Apple (ARKit), Google (ARCore), and others. It is also changing the very nature of how brands interact with customers, particularly in the luxury real estate sector. Where developers once relied solely on brochures and websites to convey their vision for a resort community, they now can enable prospective buyers to experience it more powerfully, emotionally, and immediately through AR.
Augmented Reality Vs. Virtual Reality:
Augmented Reality is different From Virtual Reality. Augmented Reality utilizes a person’s phone – to overlay virtual technology against a real setting. Augmented Reality is essentially the next evolution of Virtual Reality.
How Does It Work?
Augmented Reality is essentially the ability to add digitally enhanced images/content to a live camera feed. Advanced AR Technology makes it appear as if the new content is “real,” and a part of the environment to which it has been overlaid. And it’s becoming a big deal for companies and brands involved in mobile computing and business applications.
A recent example of AR in action is the popular game – ‘Pokemon GO’.
You may have seen people playing this game on their phones. In the game, a person uses the phone’s camera focused on a specific background, such as an empty spot in the yard.
The game’s AR technology then takes over and a popular Pokemon character appears within the surroundings of the person’s yard.
Now, imagine the same technology for the real estate industry- but instead of video game characters appearing…. The exterior facade of a new Clubhouse or a potential residence appears on the homesite.
AR technology allows the sales team to guide prospects on a tour of the yet-to-be-built residence or building.
“AR technology has opened a whole new way for luxury real estate communities to engage and influence customers,” says Peter Dayot, Managing Director at Publicus Community. “It is revolutionizing the classic Discovery Tour of getting someone to come visit a property or resort in person. Through AR, people can get very close to that on-site experience without leaving their home, office, or car. They can literally be anywhere and immerse themselves in an AR sensory experience that is as close to real as you can get. Obviously, it opens up a world of possibilities for real estate developers, builders, and hospitality entities.” Let’s take a closer look at a few of the benefits AR Technology brings to real estate developers and communities.
Five Benefits of AR for the Real Estate Industry
- Approximates Reality – AR allows customers to see and experience a property more intimately. They can immerse themselves in the setting and within the actual amenities and residences. They can get a true feel for what the living experience is actually like, inside and out.
- Saves Time – Potential customers are often busy and may live across the country, or across the world. AR gives them the convenience of being able to “visit” your community or property without having to get in a car or jump on a plane. They can experience it immediately without having to set aside time and make plans.
- Ensures Safety – Living in the world of Coronavirus has changed how we do business, real estate included. Not everyone is comfortable with an on-site Discovery Tour that requires travel and being around sales associates. AR is the next best thing to being there—even better many would argue, since it accommodates self-isolating.
- Boosts Sales – Think of AR Technology as being an extra salesperson who can give tours 24/7, without having to sleep, take time off, or call-in sick. It serves as an ever-ready virtual sales person who is always available to conduct a site tour for prospects.
- Increases Sales Efficiency – Because of Covid-19 and budget concerns, many resorts and real estate communities have reduced the number of on-site sales people they employ. Fewer sales people make it harder to properly nurture top-tier customers. AR solves this problem by filtering out the low-quality leads (who aren’t interested in seeing more) and attracting the high-quality prospects (who you want to take a closer look). This is a godsend for your sales team who don’t have the time to give tours to every individual who makes an inquiry.