Virtual reality viewings

Virtual reality viewings

Feb 22, 2016
Virtual reality: how the Oculus Rift will change property hunting
Editor Editor

Imagine exploring tens of properties from the comfort of a sofa. Imagine all the time and money you would save if you didn’t have to book appointments, get stuck in traffic or walk through countless dusty building sites.

This is not a far-fetched dream. It’s property viewing in 2017. Or in our case, 2016.

Virtual realty will disrupt the property industry in a way nobody has even begun to appreciate.

That’s why we have dedicated a room in one of our offices solely to playing around with the developers’ version of the Oculus Rift.

The Oculus Rift is the technology that started as a Kickstarter project and soon caught the eyes, and investment, of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

The head-mounted Oculus Rift creates a virtual reality experience around the subject, immersing them into complex 3D spaces that can be explored from a stationary position.

After months of being available to developers, the consumer version of the Oculus Rift is expected to hit the market next month.

Once it does, Zanzi Homes will be offering people the chance to view tens of properties over a beer or a coffee from the comfort of an office. No need to drive around or wait for property owners or agents to align their timetables to yours.

A process that usually takes weeks, months or even years can be reduced to one sitting. Once you create a shortlist of the properties you really like, you could then visit those in the real world.

Malta is already experiencing a property boom, with everyone wanting to invest money safely into good properties. Imagine what impact this will have if suddenly even the busiest of people could find their dream investment within minutes instead of weeks.

The Quicklets team has made technology work. Its sister company, Zanzi Homes, is built on the same vision.

Why should the property industry remain a dinosaur when all other industries are adapting to disruptive technology?

Co-founder Sami Baddar, a tech specialist, contributed lots of cutting-edge ideas that nobody else was attempting in the property industry. Together, we rethought the property market, using technology as our starting point.

We invested in an innovative and custom-built back-office system that doubles our agents’ efficiency. We invested in drones to give better views of our listings.

We also applied affiliate marketing concepts to property, allowing virtual agents to list property leads and earn commission when sales are made, thanks to real-time tracking.

Virtual reality was a natural next step and we cannot wait to roll out the service and start seeing what other opportunities it creates.

The new technology will offer people the experience of actually walking through a completely different property and exploring the views and other characteristics.

We are still experimenting with video stitching, which has proven to be the hardest part of this revolutionary phase. Optimising the three-dimensional video so it doesn’t judder has been the biggest challenge.

Virtual reality is going to play a huge part of our lives in the upcoming generations. So it’s an amazing thrill to be able to start using it within an industry that has got so comfortable in the good times that it has stopped innovating.

By applying tech startup thinking to the property business, we’ve created a proptech giant that cannot stop growing.



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