Rightmove testing virtual reality
Friday 10 June 2016
Virtual reality (VR) tours of properties look set to revolutionise the way prospective buyers view homes.
Rightmove’s VR viewing platform allows anyone to log on and move through properties without leaving the comfort of their own home.
Dubbed ‘3D property porn’ by the Daily Mirror, tours are now available of a £2.5million mansion in Oakleigh Park South and a new development in Finchley Central on the Rightmove website.
And while the tours are unlikely to be sufficient on their own to clinch a sale, buyers and sellers alike will benefit from the removal of unnecessary viewings.
Panoramic views of each room are edited together from six connected cameras to create a fully immersive viewing experience.
You can try the tour using a Google Cardboard headset on Rightmove’s Youtube Channel by installing the latest Youtube app or the Littlstar app.
More time efficient for buyers, agents and vendors
Hannes Buhrmann, Rightmove’s head of innovation, believes it will make “the whole process more time efficient for buyers, agents and vendors.”
Nottingham-based estate agents Walton & Allen are leading the field: virtual reality viewings of all of their properties are now available to watch on YouTube.
Virtual tours have been available online for years, but the technology to view properties through VR headsets is a recent development.
Although experts recommend using VR headsets to get the full effect, viewers can also watch at home using YouTube by swinging their smartphones in the direction they want to see.
And while estate agents may be uneasy at the prospect of losing work arranging viewings, the new technology is expected to give them a competitive edge attracting vendors and free up more time for them to offer a quality service.
Technology experts predict VR will be an everyday part of our lives before long – and while there may be initial reservations, a transformation of the sometimes tedious process of viewings, is to be welcomed.
Further down the line, Computer Generated Imagery (VGI) VR - created from architects' design files - will allow prospective buyers the chance to virtually change decor and furnishings at the click of a mouse and instantly visualise their plans.
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