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01 Jul 2016
360° Photography - The Future of CRE Tech


360° Photography - The Future of CRE Tech

In both, commercial and residential real estate, it is crucial that each listing contains photos that accurately depict the given space. If the photos are insufficient, possible tenants will be un...

In both, commercial and residential real estate, it is crucial that each listing contains photos that accurately depict the given space. If the photos are insufficient, possible tenants will be underwhelmed by the product. And if the pictures are deceiving or misleading, the client will be let down when they eventually walk-through the building. With the latest 360° camera technology, prospective tenants are now able to view listings in the most realistic way possible. The Ricoh Theta S, is a handheld camera, that simultaneously uses two separate lenses to capture a 360° picture. With each lens covering a field of 190°, this allows the final product to be an image without any distortions or missing pieces. In addition to still photographs, the Theta S also permits videos of up to 25 minutes.
 
Once you have taken the picture, you can easily upload the photos/videos to the camera roll on a computer using a standard USB

cord. The photos will appear to look like a long panorama picture, which may first appear to be somewhat disorienting. To view the photograph in the 360° format, you must download the Ricoh Theta S application, on either the App Store or the Android Market. After downloading the platform, you can simply drop the panorama photo, straight into the Theta App. Instantly, your photo comes to life, as it appears you are now standing in the exact location where the shot was originally taken. Similar to Google Earth, you will also be able to scroll left, right, up or down, to get a realistic representation of what it is like to be in the given position.
 

When I first used the application, I was blown away by how accurate the image really is. In commercial real estate, many properties have arrangements that are not easy to represent in a standard picture. The property David and I have been viewing, has a very complex layout that is nearly impossible to capture with a normal photograph. One room in particular - which serves as the common area - has five walls in a quite irregular shape. Once we looked at the 360° picture on the Theta app, we were shocked by how accurately the room had transferred to the application. With the help of this new technology, brokers become more efficient in finding tenants that have serious interest in the property.
With the increasing popularity in 360° photography, there are still some limitations in terms of a platform where you can store projects. Although the Theta app is accurate and convenient, it is not a great place to store your 360° images. After doing some research on websites with 360° models, I came across Holobuilder. Holobuilder allows its users to store groups of spherical panoramas into different projects that other users can view as a slideshow. With Holobuilder, the user can also add 3D text or simple objects into the photo, which is not a standard feature on the Theta app.
In the field of Commercial Real Estate, technology has not been utilized to its greatest potential. With the rise of virtual reality headsets, 360° photos will continue to become a prominent tool that everyone can benefit from.
If you are interested in learning more about Ricoh Theta S Camera you can search here.
Please check out our latest Holobuilder project here.

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