VR has enhanced the immersion of many fields, and some of them are real estate, its agencies, and metaverses. The creativeness this technology ignited in these industries is nothing to be sneezed at. Undoubtedly, Virtual Reality and architecture are the future of real estate and NFTs.
Why VR Benefits Architecture
Sketching a project without Virtual Reality is not an issue, but ignoring the many advantages VR bestows would be foolish. In fact, studies show that, even before the 2000s, researchers had already seen the promising benefits Virtual Reality could provide.
From holistic project planning to compelling rendered presentations: VR boosts many aspects of architecture by a huge mile. The benefits are too good to miss out on.
Immersive Experience for Clients
Regardless of how good a design is, if the project doesn’t appeal to the client, the architecture will be a failure.
Fortunately, VR dramatically enhances the experience customers have while visiting their desired project. Unfortunately, although presentations don’t lack in the visuals department, there’s no way for people to feel the place in an immersive fashion.
Virtual Reality allows anyone to explore buildings as if they were there and gives a proper perception of how a project would feel like. As a result, clients can conclude whether the design is what they’re looking for or not with confidence.
Moreover, changes can be applied while clients observe a project. This bonus saves a lot of time in redesigning and offers a feeling of agency for the customers. Overall, it’s an engaging experience that will captive people.
A Better View for Architects
Naturally, an immersive experience will not only grant a faithful view of the project to the clients, but it’ll also help architects.
Virtual Reality and architecture go hand in hand because evaluating the scale of a project is much easier. In-real time changes and communication will make coordinating a designing team a breeze. After all, being on the same page is vital for a well-built project.
Additionally, architects can interact with buildings as if they were real. Lightning and perspective are crucial factors that can make or break a project. Virtual Reality will let the designing team deliver a more suitable project for clients.
Despite the fact VR is somewhat hefty for entertainment purposes, this tool is very cheap for business purposes. It is so cheap that the first-ever client will pay its worth.
Virtual Reality is a relatively economical system to set up. There isn’t much hardware or software one should get to so as to install a fully functional VR layout. Furthermore, most updated smartphones can reproduce the visuals of a VR headset without any issue at all.
VR is a no-brainer investment.
The Use of AR in Architecture
Virtual Reality is not the only technology that improved architecture; Augmented Reality did so, too.
Regardless of how similar both terms sound, Augmented Reality doesn’t show a digital space. Instead, it overlays our world with 3D models. These models, or buildings, are formed using Building Information Modeling (BIM) data.
Its uses are similar to VR, but they do have their differences.
Safety is a must in every building project. The more tools for construction inspection, the better.
Augmented Reality allows users to apply all the BIM data and assess a thorough inspection instantly. In addition to that, comments and images can be attached to the models inserted in AR. This technology is highly versatile when it comes to designs.
Furthermore, with AR, inspectors will be able to examine construction sites holistically. All of a project’s details will be displayed for everyone to see, making the whole process quicker and safer. Thus, Augmented Reality enhances communication and workflow.
Risk-Free Project Planning
Dictating the scale and pace of a project is no easy task.
There’ll always be hiccups along the way, but how each of them is tackled decides a project’s future. If the project plan of a building does not account for those unexpected situations, delays and many more issues will crop up. AR can account for these troubles.
What’s impressive about Augmented Reality is its ability to facilitate a project’s current state. For example, data is more accessible for estimators, which are not well acquainted with the whole construction process.
Coordinating the whole construction team is then more straightforward. Every person involved can collaborate in the project planning and devise possible solutions for whatever issues that may come up.
Only from accurate inspections can workers keep buildings as intact as possible.
Maintenance supervisors and technicians need construction blueprints in order to preserve buildings’ lifespans. Augmented Reality lets them scan through a project’s original state and determine what needs to be fixed or improved.
Besides that, people’s needs have changed over the years. For that very reason, AR is the ultimate tool to match those demands and renovate a project. The overlay it provides is ideal for panning out the new version of a project and how to maintain it.
What Does the Future for Virtual Reality and Architecture Hold?
The construction industry is infamous for not investing much in technology for one reason or another. However, a future where Virtual Reality and architecture work in tandem is becoming more plausible by the day.
In 2017, a survey reported that 81% of construction firms plan on investing more in the technology department. Such demand will bring about discoveries in the way designers use Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality as tools.
If the construction industry keeps that trend, the versatility these digital assets display in architecture will mature exponentially in the coming years.
How Virtual Reality and Architecture Merged with Metaverses
Real estate is not the only field that puts Virtual Reality and architecture into use. The creation of metaverses and the implementation of non-fungible tokens heavily shifted the function VR and AR had.
People tend to believe the concept of metaverses was introduced when Mark Zuckerberg introduced Facebook’s Horizon Worlds. That can’t be any further from the truth.
There’s a deep story behind how metaverses became the home for architecture designs. Such background is paramount to understanding the current role of Virtual Reality and real estate in the crypto world.
The Concept of ‘Metaverse’
Although metaverses were already introduced in media with books such as Pigmalyon’s Spectacles, its concept was coined in 1992.
The first time the ‘metaverse’ word appeared was in Neal Stephenson’s book Snow Crash. The story follows the life of an almost poor computer hacker that enters into a fictional world by putting on goggles and earphones. In there, the protagonist mans an avatar and interacts with the worlds it’s in.
Needless to say, despite its age, Snow Crash’s concept of metaverses fits the present state of cyberspaces to a tee. Incidentally, the word saw its use many years later.
The Rise of Digital Twins
Michael Grieves introduced the ‘digital twins’ concept in 2002. That concept is a crucial element of metaverses, Virtual Reality and architecture.
A digital twin is a virtual representation of a physical object. The purpose of modeling a tangible object was to study it and recreate different situations. Digital twins were perfect for testing out almost any kind of project.
A twin wasn’t a new idea. Physics relied on physical twins. However, these weren’t accurate enough to represent an object’s properties. Digital twins made such a predicament a thing of the past. Scientists could now analyze physical objects with pinpoint precision.
A few years forward, digital twins became a staple concept of Virtual Reality and architecture. With it, designing and recreating buildings matured immensely over time.
Philip Rosedale used all the previous discoveries in technology to create the first successful metaverse in 2003: the Second Life game.
The game had the goal of creating a cyberspace in which people could interact and behave as if they were living there. Hence, the name Second Life. It became a massive hit, and people played it for years.
Its success was an essential piece of the metaverses’ development. Not only that, but it also pathed the way for architectural NFTs. Everything in Second Life had a price, much like in real life. The game had its own currency, Linden Dollars, obtainable with in-game activities or a cash shop.
Since people could buy said currency with real money, all assets acquired in Second Life had real value. Consequently, investors could buy, invest in and sell properties and collectibles within the game. That is precisely how crypto metaverses function today.
During the boom of NFTs and cryptocurrencies in the 2010s, Argentinian developers forged the iconic metaverse Decentraland.
The combination of previous games alongside the digital twins’ and metaverse’s concepts gave birth to Decentraland. This game, just like Second Life, holds digital assets which can be acquired by MANA, its in-game currency.
Nonetheless, Decentraland is not a mirror to Second Life. The metaverse is more focused on immersive communities and investments rather than living a digital life. The formula for this game was later seen as the way of designing metaverses.
For example, OVR, a metaverse focused on Augmented Reality and architecture NFTs, is based on Decentraland’s principles. Nonetheless, it is worth mentioning that OVR is different from Decentraland: users can create or outsource building designs as non-fungible tokens.
OVR’s approach to 3D NFTs is slowly but surely rising in popularity.
Architecture-Based 3D NFTs
Every development in non-fungible tokens and metaverses led artists into a new use for designs: NFT architecture.
In this scenario, architectural 3D NFTs are no different from any work of art: they are artistic expressions sold at the price people see fit. However, thanks to recent technological developments in the crypto environment, artists fearlessly ventured into the unknown territory of real estate NFT.
Even though metaverses, architecture and NFTs have been around for quite some years, only in 2020 have artists made the connection between the three. The most notable artists are Krista Kim, developer of the Mars House, and Andrés Reisinger, creator of The Shipping’s furniture.
The success these authors and others found with their designs encouraged many to follow suit. As a result, 3D NFT designs related to real estate and houses turned into a new trend. Architects learned how to use Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality for their crypto projects.
What’s Next for Architecture in NFTs?
The metaverse market is a very competitive one. Nonetheless, each platform ups its game in order to keep up with the others.
Every metaverse platform is trying to get ahold of the number one place. With that purpose in mind, developers conceive more complex digital spaces and attractive virtual designs.
Naturally, architecture and VR will see more use as these metaverses in the making ultimately launch and put forward new technologies.
This is just the beginning of the merge between Virtual Reality and architecture. The use of VR and AR has proven that real estate, be it for metaverses or construction sites, can still be refined further.