Bangalore, August 11, 2023 – Leading real estate developer Prestige Group has unveiled plans to venture into the virtual realm of the metaverse in a strategic partnership with PropVR, the 3D visualization arm of Square Yards. This innovative move aims to revolutionize the real estate industry by introducing luxury projects within the immersive landscapes of the metaverse.
During the Digital Transformation in Real Estate event organized by Square Yards in Bengaluru on August 9, Sunder Jagannathan, Co-founder of PropVR, affirmed the developments to Moneycontrol, noting that the initiative is in its early stages.
Vishesh Kaul, Chief Information and Digital Officer of Prestige Group, shared his insights during the event, stating, “Over the next one to three months, we are set to launch and visualize a number of projects, particularly within the luxury segment, within the virtual reality ecosystem. Our intention is to engage customers from a social perspective and position ourselves at the forefront of India’s real estate sector.” Kaul highlighted that the pandemic has led to a shift in customer behavior, with a growing number of homebuyers expressing interest in purchasing real estate online. “This has prompted our investment in this technology, as we gradually transition from traditional offline sales to online channels. We anticipate a substantial portion of our sales will migrate to this platform.”
Kaul specified that initially, this technology will be tailored to premium projects; however, the company envisions its eventual integration into more affordable ventures as the technology becomes more cost-effective. He further shared the company’s curiosity about the extension of this technology to other segments, such as providing a purchasing experience for customers in their malls within the metaverse.
During the event, Jagannathan noted that virtual reality has already proven beneficial for non-resident Indian (NRI) homebuyers, resulting in a notable 30-40 percent increase in sales after its incorporation. He contemplated the prospect of traditional classified platforms and online listings gradually evolving into metaverse-based virtual reality experiences, emphasizing that real estate is inherently spatial and that technologies like blockchain-based metaverses and virtual reality possess the potential to reshape the online real estate landscape.
However, Kaul acknowledged that significant challenges still exist, particularly concerning the cost and gradual adoption of the technology. Tanuj Shori, CEO of Square Yards, echoed this sentiment, pointing out that although the pandemic accelerated the integration of technology into real estate, some developers remain cautious about embracing these novel approaches.
Dhruba Ghosh, Executive Vice President of Provident Group, shared that a primary challenge stems from the readiness of homebuyers to embrace contemporary technologies. “While younger generations readily adopt new tech, a considerable portion of Indian homebuyers still prefer physical property walkthroughs. Nevertheless, Provident Housing is committed to gradually embracing these emerging technologies.”
Kaul concurred, recognizing that implementing advanced technologies like virtual reality and artificial intelligence remains challenging for properties valued at Rs 1 crore and below. However, he stressed that the real estate landscape is evolving, with a growing presence of millennial and Gen Z homebuyers who are already familiar with the metaverse. “We are observing early indications of this shift, and as it matures, we can expect the costs associated with these technologies to decrease,” he added.