HabFest-30: Virtual Reality Experience Offers Visitors Preview of Homes, Look at Future of Realty

Among the many product demonstrations on offer at the ongoing HabFest-30 exhibition, perhaps the most immersive is a virtual reality experience that provides prospective homebuyers a 360-degree preview of the property on offer.
Since the exhibition by Habitat Technology Group got underway at Poojappura ground on Thursday, the stall for a Technopark-based start-up has drawn curious visitors eager to don the VR headset and take a personali_MSP5151sed tour of several virtual houses.
With a variety of customisation options — from porting across rooms, changing bedspread and tile textures, opening doors and windows and even adjusting light, wind and water effects, the experience seeks to provide a “truthful” representation of the property. Real-time price estimates are available at the click of a hand-held controller.
“This is a useful tool for both architects and customers. Once the blueprints or building models are fed into the software, we can map out fairly accurately how the property will look according to the specifications given,” said V. Gopikrishnan, who runs the start-up – an online procurement platform for brick, mortar, electrical and sanitary fittings and other construction needs.
Gopikrishnan, a gold medallist architect from IIT Kharagpur who feels that architecture had not made much progress in the IT age, “enjoys making things more efficient”. The start-up, incubated by Kerala Startup Mission, only became fully functional in the third quarter of 2016, but are already supplying to more than 250 projects in Kerala.
Their popularity owes much to simplicity. Buying building material online is a three-step process with creating an estimate, getting a quote in which the company finds the best available prices for the consumer and then placing and confirming the order.
“We have product images and detailed specifications. The advantage is that buyers can compare two products easily and we can give customers the guarantee on materials, cost advantage and the convenience of having the material shipped to their specified location,” said Gopikrishnan, whose customer base includes architects, contractors and end-users.

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