7 best real estate and architecture augmented reality apps 2018

Augmented Reality

Authors

Mario Stipetic

A use case for architects, property managers, and property owners

Nina Juretic, Mario Stipetic

My friend, a building design architect, told an interesting story.  He had a meeting where he was supposed to present his project in front of very important, serious and business-like clients. They were reserved from the start. An hour later and the clients were happy and smiling like children.
So, what happened in that hour?

The clients expected an old school presentation. They were expecting a real model of the building but what they got was an augmented reality presentation and they went from serious to ecstatic.

For professionals like designers and architects, it can be easily forgotten that many of the clients are not used to the latest technology advances and giving them a presentation like this can look like magic.

The clients loved the presentation and they got the project. But even besides that, the result of using augmented reality was there:

  • The studio saved hundreds of hours in building a real model of the building
  • the client was able to see the future building layer -by - layer with ease

Three ways augmented reality can help

Augmented reality in the real estate industry can help in three different ways:

  • information overlay of real-life objects
  • digital objects creation
  • enhancements of a real-life object

Current AR platforms

AR kit by Apple

AR kit is a software that allows the iOS developers to include AR into iPhone apps. One of the first apps that included widespread use of this kit is Pokemon Go and Ikea AR app.

ARCore by Google

ARCore is a new kit that can bring similar features as an AR kit but to Android phones. From the very start, ARCore has been widely used for all sorts of apps.

AR platform by Facebook

AR is considered as one of the two main technologies for the upcoming 10 years developed by Facebook as they presented at F8.

The platform is basically intended to support multiple app directions in Games, Art, Fun, Information rendering etc.

In which segments do augmented reality have solutions for the real estate industry?

1. Architecture mockup visualization

A story from the beginning of this article is just one of the examples of architect mockup visualization. The real benefits of showing the mockup in real life situation come even better with one app described here that can show the mockup at the concrete construction site and even walk through real size future house.

2. Construction assistant

The construction industry can use augmented reality to visualize the elements that are usually hidden. For example, the city construction worker can visualize the exact plan of city electricity and sewage pipes plan.

Also, construction workers can visualize electricity plans for the room that they are refurbishing. This way they avoid unnecessary drilling and save time. The biggest challenge here would be to propose some kind of general format for future use.

3. Apartment rent or sell visualization

As renting market is huge, it did not progress much in the past 10 years. Local renting is handled by hundreds of local apps that make your life a living hell when you are trying to rent an apartment or house.

AR can ease this problem by marking the exact spot of the apartment or house while you are near for certain neighborhood. This way the app would show you the exact house while you are walking NYC SOHO for example and offer you a natural solution in the neighborhood that you are usually hanging around.

Here is one concept that our agency produced did to illustrate this exact solution:

7 best Real estate AR apps list


AirMeasure

AirMeasure is an interesting app, just looking at its demo is mesmerizing. It is essentially a digital ruler, but a really fancy one. AirMeasure is used by pointing your device and following the simple guidance you start measuring. The best part of Measure Kit is that it doesn’t just measure straight lines but tricky parts as well, like corners and edges.  

  • fun
  • easy to use
  • provides you clear information

The app is free and is currently in version 1.8. The user feedback is very positive with a 4.5 rating.

http://armeasure.com/

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Magicplan

An amazing app with raving reviews on iTunes. Magic plan is used to create and edit floor plans, complete job estimates, view space in 3D, plan DIY projects, or furnish a home. Their users are can be everyone, from real estate agents, architects, home inspectors, interior designers, small businesses, furniture retailers or do-it-yourselfers.

  • scan the room
  • assemble and furnish floor plan
  • award-winning app

http://www.magic-plan.com/

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Street Peak Realtor App

How do you use this app? When you point your phone towards a real estate it pulls information about it. Simple. You can find out the number of rooms and bathrooms it has, estimated value and other listing information. It is mostly used for quickly finding out the price.

  • snap a picture
  • get the information
  • pending patenting

This app was brought to us by Realtor, a major real estate agency. It is available only for Android.

https://www.realtor.com/homemade/streek-peek-and-sign-snap-use-augmented-reality-and-image-recognition-to-find-your-home/

en_badge_web_generic.png

Astralink

The app is still in the demo phase but showing a lot of potential in the construction industry. It is intended to help construction workers in visualizing exactly how should a finished piece look like. Its usage is very practical, showing everything from how the finished floors will look to where all the different pipes will go.

  • visualize the upcoming construction works
  • reduce errors

http://astralink.io/

RealAR

Created for real estate, RealAR helps buyers/clients visualize the work of architects. It is intended to help you see how your dream home would look in real environments. You can stand on your plot of land and by simply using your smartphone or tablet you can get a very good representation of how your home will look.

  • visualize your house
  • fast and simple
  • creating, selling and marketing real estate

There are many competing apps but RealAR definitely has its use in business.

https://www.realar.com/

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Safety Compass

Safety Compass enables workers to receive safety information and visualizes it with AR.  It offers critical site information well before they enter a hazardous area and it is marketed as “Real Time Safety Through Augmented Reality”.

  • live data
  • notifications if hazardous
  • In-Depth Safety Information

http://www.thesafetycompass.com.au/

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ARKi

With a 5-star rating, ARki is making its users very satisfied. ARKi is an augmented reality app that showcases architectural projects in augmented reality. The app is currently for bespoke projects only but user uploads are coming soon.  

  • Clear Design Communication
  • Spatial Exploration
  • Portable Model Distribution

https://www.darfdesign.com/arki-info.html

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Conclusion

The future of augmented reality is bright, already it's the focus of biggest companies such as Apple, Google, and Facebook and it found a real use case for a wide range of audiences. Currently, it is mostly used for fun, in apps like Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook filters but in future, it will be regularly used for various niche markets such as real estate, medicine, tourism etc.  

Stay tuned for our new augmented reality blog posts here or send us an email to get a quote if you want augmented reality design or development help.

What will be the most important 2020 fashion eCommerce trend based on your professional experience?

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6. Video is still on the rise

Video is already pretty popular on eCommerce—but it’s still growing.

There’s no mystery why retailers are gravitating toward more videos—they can increase conversions, click-through rates, and web traffic. In fact, Forbes found that 65 percent of customers are more likely to make a purchase after watching a product video. 

Shoppers are attracted to this advertising method because it feels more authentic and can provide valuable information. Dollar Shave Club experienced first-hand how effective video marketing can be when its unexpectedly funny first video received nearly five million views and generated 12,000 orders within the first two days of its release.

Source: HubSpot.com

This format is so beneficial because it’s very easy to share and elicits an emotional reaction from viewers. The Aberdeen Group found that companies utilizing video in ad campaigns boosted revenue 49 percent more quickly year-after-year than those that do not.

According to Cisco, video will be 82 percent of all internet traffic by 2022. That’s up four-fold over 2017 and demonstrates just how important video will be to eCommerce (and all businesses) in the coming years.

Experiment with one or more of the following video formats and add embedded videos to your product pages or link to videos in your Jilt post-purchase emails to pique customer interest and boost revenue.

Product demos

  • Allow consumers to see product from 360-degree angle
  • Highlight and explain major features
  • Answer common customer questions

How-to videos

  • Delve deeper into a product’s features and demonstrate how to use them
  • Popular video type for social media
  • Get customers excited about everything your product can do

User-generated customer reviews

  • Build trust about your product
  • Add a layer of authenticity to your reviews

Lifestyle

  • Build a narrative around your brand and tell stories about your product
  • Videography feels more like a movie or short film
  • Great for your social media platforms

6. Shoppable ads on social media

Both Google and Instagram introduced shoppable ads in the past couple of months. We will only see more of this trend, making it super easy to shop while you're scrolling on the Instagram. The photo-sharing social media platform is quickly becoming the central hub for branded fashion content and powerful user-generated marketing. In the fashion industry, it can be difficult to build trust. By turning to influencers, fashion brands can gain endorsements from trusted product curators who boast massive followings.

Not only that, but retailers could learn a thing or two from Instagram when it comes to shopping on mobile. The app has made the customer journey to purchase super easy with a native payment integration into the app.

7. Shared economy trend in fashion

Brands like Uber and Airbnb made solved huge problems for us, making it easier and cheaper to book a place or get a ride. Shared economy is slowly entering the fashion world, and we can only expect to see it more in 2020. The sharing economy is making it easier than ever for consumers to get expensive looks affordably, either through renting or swapping outfits.

While the idea has been around for a while, with services such as Rent-the-Runway catering to designer tastes, it’s Chinese consumers that are taking the concept mainstream. In a competitive economy, China’s post-’90s generation rents outfits to keep up with fast-changing trends.

The impact of the shared economy on the fashion e-commerce is dramatic. Brands can offer users great outfits without having to worry about wholesaling or manufacturing. Instead, they can simply focus on providing an easy-to-navigate customer experience. It’s no wonder such accessible and affordable models are taking their place among the top fashion e-commerce trends.


8. Brands are reducing wait time with the help of chatbots

eCommerce customers love chat. According to one study, 51 percent are more likely to make a purchase if they can have a live chat, and 44 percent say having their questions answered in real-time is one of the most important features an eCommerce site can offer.

And that’s cool… except it’s a big ask for a small company, and an impossible ask for someone running an eCommerce business solo.

That’s where chatbots come in. Rather than answering every question yourself in real time, why not have a robot do it—or, at least, serve as an initial screener?

It’s estimated that by next year, 85 percent of all customer service interactions will be handled by chatbots. (Oh, and the same study estimated that by next year, the average person will have more total conversations with bots than with their spouse. Welcome to our horrible automated future!)

And chatbot technology isn’t just available to companies that can afford AI developers or ones that have been building a secret army of robots in a sub-basement. There are plenty of affordable and simple chatbot apps available right now for both Shopify and WooCommerce.

If you’re on the fence about adding one, keep this one stat in mind: 29 percent of people say they’re more likely to buy something on a website with live chat, even if they don’t use it.

9. Increased number of direct-to-consumer brands

Direct-to-consumer brands, which handle every single aspect of their business from design to manufacturing to sales and distribution, are on the rise. There have been a number of high-profile successes in the space recently, including Casper, Warby Parker, and other brands you hear advertising on literally every podcast—so now, lots of others are following suit

There’s a strong appeal to running a DTC operation.  Without a bunch of middlemen siphoning off any money, you can cut costs and increase quality, like The Black Tux did by manufacturing their own tuxedos for their online rental store. You’re not at the mercy of major retailers, meaning you control your brand experience at every step. You “own” every single one of your customers and it’s easier to gauge the effectiveness of your marketing.

That being said—DTC is still a tough game. Managing every single aspect of a retail business is a significant undertaking that requires capital, organization, and lots of talented, specialized employees. However, as more bespoke DTC brands gain serious traction and siphon off significant market share from the mega-retailers, it’s a space that’s undeniably worth keeping an eye on—or, in the most ambitious cases, joining in on.

10. Omnichanel > Online

Due to Amazon's increasing popularity, a lot of bookstores went out of business. And few years later, Amazon is

There’s something almost poetic about it. Amazon drove countless brick-and-mortar bookstores out of business—and now that they’re gone, Amazon has started opening its own brick-and-mortar bookstores. There are now more than 50 Amazon Books locationsaround the U.S.

But—those stores don’t just sell a curated selection of popular books. They also serve as a place for people to come check out Amazon’s gadgets like the Kindle and Echo, and even to handle package pick-ups and returns. Amazon is using their physical locations for book sales, sure—but through another lens, that almost seems secondary to the other purpose of bridging other key gaps between the online and brick-and-mortar experience. With their stores, Amazon can now get the sales boost of people playing around with their gadgets, like Apple does at its Apple Stores. And by incorporating a staffed shipping department into the stores, Amazon can make the delivery and returns process on complicated orders go much smoother than they could via any online-only instructions or chats.

Amazon is far from the only one looking to establish a physical presence to shore up the vulnerabilities left by a virtual-only business—and secure even more customers by giving them that in-person, three-dimensional, tactile experience. Last year, more online-only retailers, including Rent the Runway, Everlane, Allbirds, and Adore Me, started making the move to add more physical locations, featuring curated collections and the in-person service touch, and that trend is continuing on now. It’s estimated that digital brands will open at least 850 physical stores in the next five years.

And as that trend continues, it will be interesting to see how many of the stores start stocking more inventory, rather than just a small sample, to achieve one of the other key benefits of the brick-and-mortar experience: The instant gratification of walking out with a shopping bag in-hand.

Summary

As technology and customer preferences continue to evolve, the eCommerce world is adjusting with it. That’s reflected in the trends we’ll see in the industry next year.


  1. Online shops are fighting high return rates with - reviews.
  2. AR shopping
  3. Search grows beyond text
  4. Mobile is the new desktop
  5. Video is still on the rise
  6. Shoppable ads on social media
  7. Shared economy trend in fashion
  8. Brands are reducing wait time with the help of chatbots
  9. Increased number of direct-to-consumer brands
  10. Online shops are going offline

What the experts have to say;
In your opinion, which of the trends will have the biggest impact on the world of fashion e-commerce in 2020?

Mostly, Artificial Intelligence looped into the Fashion Industry. As we can both agree how big an impact AI has on the market and has a huge scope as well. On those lines we provide conversational automation to the fashion e-commerce stores as well, therefore, powering fashion e-commerce and AI amalgamated with ML, NLP, NLU, NLG together.

Niharika Ayyagari - Verloop

Virtual reality shopping app

Crevia Soh is a founder of Aiverc, design watch online shop. She wanted to create a luxury watch that was bold and different, and allowed people to express themselves.

Greater personalization without a doubt, combined with ever increasing competition for customer loyalty.
profile image circle

Margarita Goroshkevic - AllRiot

Greater personalization without a doubt, combined with ever increasing competition for customer loyalty.
profile image circle

Margarita Goroshkevic - AllRiot

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