The <a target="_blank" href="https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/403080" rel="follow noopener">metaverse</a> is already providing us with a wealth of new experiences and has spurred limitless speculation around the many avenues for its future expansion. These possibilities — which are beginning to appear infinite — are enjoyable and sometimes even practical for consumers, meaning they have the potential to be extremely lucrative for the businesses implementing them. Antonio_Diaz | Getty Images While current interactions and excitement around the metaverse fall heavily on realistic fashion shows, concerts and immersive video games, there are various applications that <a target="_blank" href="https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/432705" rel="follow noopener">go beyond pure entertainment</a>.
The deep value of the metaverse lies in the pragmatic applications it can power. In a globalized world where distributed work and communication is on the rise, metaverse applications allow users to engage with one another remotely in a far more collaborative and interactive setting. It removes the need for tedious obligations and offers more practical, efficient alternatives to in-person tasks, which sometimes require long wait times or long-distance travel.
From the perspective of realistic use cases for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technology, the real estate industry in particular stands to benefit immensely from the metaverse. From breaking ground on the construction of a new home to its reselling years later, the metaverse and its immersive architecture can have a major impact. Here’s how:
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Let’s start with the very beginning of a home’s life: its construction. Construction requires site visits and on-premise efforts and coordination. The site needs to be carefully surveyed and measured, and the construction needs to be meticulously planned and carried out. Human error can also lead to inefficiencies and inaccuracies in calculating measurements and determining progress.
In the metaverse, we could feasibly design an application where the sites can be accurately mapped, allowing engineers and contractors to visit a very realistic rendition of the actual site from their homes or offices. Not only would they be able to conduct site surveys, provide more accurate progress reports and better estimate project delays, but they would also save a lot of time typically spent commuting to these various site locations. Additionally, by leveraging the metaverse, users can seek out help from their social network on design ideas, floor plans and much more.
New applications can bridge the gap between the metaverse and home design through the use of AR to sketch out floor plans and designs so that construction and contracting can be done efficiently.
Interior design is next on the roadmap following the completed construction of the home. Accurate virtual modeling of the home is a major advantage to the interior designer who can utilize the tech to gauge the client’s interest in a variety of different options for the living room, bedroom and home office. Currently, interior designers are limited to presenting sketches or 3D models accompanied by images of the furniture and decoration. It can still remain hard for clients to visualize what that room will look like when they walk into it. Now, imagine that they can.
The interior designer could use an application in the metaverse to design different variations of the same room, with different color palettes and furniture styles, and they could even set the light coming through the window to changing weather or times of day. The client can now walk through a 3D virtual rendition of the room and experience the different layout options on a rainy day, a sunny afternoon or a crisp winter evening. The process of selecting an interior designer’s options has just become more enjoyable and less likely to lead to disappointment.
New technology can allow buyers to literally visualize properties or spaces through virtualized staging and rendering before purchasing. Through merging the metaverse and an application that does so, buyers in the near future can interact with interior designers all via the app.
When the day comes for the home to be resold, the home visiting process can be made much easier for both the real estate agent and prospective buyers, thanks to VR applications in the metaverse. Prospective buyers living internationally and across the country would be able to visit a virtual rendition of the home in the metaverse and get a similar experience to people who visit in person, rather than relying on photos and poorly-recorded videos.
Buyers who are moving to a new state or country would no longer need to make expensive and inconvenient trips to choose a new home — they can visit as many as they want within the metaverse and get a very good impression of what it will be like to physically walk around in it. The real estate agent would benefit as well, given the metaverse VR/AR tech significantly expands the pool of potential buyers.
Property showcases through VR are already occurring. There are VR options where potential homebuyers can use VR headsets and compatible smartphones to take virtual reality tours. It won’t be long until large developers also leverage this technology in their sales offices. They will create a mini-metaverse for each project that they are selling and allow prospective buyers to tour their virtual development along with the neighborhood around it as well. This immersive experience enables the customers to fully envision a life around the property being sold.
The technology underlying the metaverse has the potential to change so many aspects of our lives in positive ways. Many of these applications are still years away, but when they’re ready, they will have resounding impacts on so many industries by creating more efficient and practical alternatives to existing systems and procedures.