Technology has become a permanent aspect of our lives, with multi-faceted advantages and continuously harnessing new opportunities. At this juncture of time when no feature of our lives remains alien to technology, the concept of ‘disruptive technologies’ or ‘Big-9’ is resonating in the real estate sectors all across the world.
These technological aspects are changing the outlook of the real estate sector across the world and transcending real estate from conventional to modern domains. This transformation in the real estate sector is also evident from ‘PropTech’ evolution which has been evolving since the revolution of the internet, handheld devices, and mobile applications.
Significance of Disruptive Technologies
In a survey conducted, it was observed that 22 per cent of the people regretted their decision of buying a property since they had not ample information. Similarly, another study quoted that 44 per cent of real estate consumers made a wrong decision pertaining to the rent and purchase of the property because they were not aware of the buying procedures, and hidden clauses.
Thus as a remedy, technology can overcome such gaps and strengthen the confidence of people in the real estate sector and prevent malpractices. Furthermore, globally the investment in real estate startups that incorporated technology reached $14 billion in the middle of 2019. The investment is likely to increase in the future with technology becoming a medium of new opportunities in the real estate sector. Similarly, 21 per cent of the commercial real estate investors in 2019 believed that PropTech will have a significant impact on Commercial Real Estate (CRE) whereas 65 per cent of CRE investors believed that the technology will have a moderate impact on CRE.
In the light of given statistics, it can be envisioned that the future of the real estate sector revolves around disruptive technologies; companies looking to gain a competitive advantage against their competitors will be at the forefront of incorporating technology.
Defining ‘Disruptive Technologies’
The term ‘Disruptive Technologies’ is coined by Clayton Christensen according to whom the concept is about replacing the conventional methods of the real estate sector with new technologies to change the outlook of the real estate sector by opening new avenues of innovation and business development.
Moreover, the phenomenon can also be elaborated as: tech-oriented practices which include gadgets, sophisticated software, online platforms and Artificial Intelligence (AI) utilised by the stakeholders of the real estate sector including for the collection and distribution of data for conducting daily real estate business.
The tools which are used for the application of disruptive technologies in the real estate sector are also known as ‘Big9’ which are used for the advancement of the concept of disruptive technologies. Technologies that fall under the umbrella of Big9 are as follows:
- Internet of Things (IoT)
- Software as a Service (SaaS)
- 3D scanning
- Artificial Intelligence and Robotics
- Virtual and Augmented Realities (VR and AR)
- Big Data
- Wearable technologies
Internet of Things (IoT)
One of the foremost aspects of disruptive technologies is the Internet of Things (IoT). The phenomenon is creating ripples in the real estate sector across the world as the real estate business is now being operated on mobiles powered by different mobile applications. Furthermore, the concept of IoT has changed the concept of brokerage, and real estate consumers can easily access different online platforms including the online property portal of Graana.com. Similarly, the phenomenon of IoT is one of the major factors behind the creation of smart cities where every aspect of urban centres is regulated by the internet.
Cloud computing is also changing the facet of the real estate sector since it provides real estate managers and dealers with an opportunity for remote access. Cloud computation is making the real estate sector more responsive to the needs of clients since a real estate agent can access the stored information relating to the buying and selling of property from anywhere through the internet. Cloud computation is also making real estate management convenient particularly for the agents working remotely.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
Falling under the umbrella of Cloud Computing, Software as a Service (Saas) is also changing the landscape of the real estate sector. The software is developed by third parties which are then offered to consumers on a subscription basis. SaaS provides remote access to real estate agents for showing different properties to potential buyers.
3D scanning is another facet of disruptive technology that is transforming the real estate landscape. This technique is gaining significance due to its feature of data collection and creation of as-built designs; moreover, 3D scanning is being utilised for revising the drawings of structures which is a necessary feature for customer satisfaction.
The advantages of 3D scanning are also proving useful for the customers that are sitting at long distances, for the satisfaction, the potential buyers or consumers can virtually inspect the properties without being physically present at the site and simultaneously giving them the advantage of making amendments to the drawing or structural plans.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics
AI is an alternative to the functions performed through human intervention, it is being envisioned that Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robotics will be the new face of the real estate industry. By computing the complex data supported by various algorithms the AI will enable to gauge the requirements of customers keeping in view the contemporary and future scenario of the real estate market. Similarly, sophisticated machines powered by AI are being utilised in the construction industry for the maintenance of buildings along with improving efficiency and minimising human error.
Similarly, AI is also helping to realign the marketing strategies and increasing the client base by using different online platforms.
Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are also among the technologies that are uplifting the methods of the real estate sector. VR and AR are being employed across the globe for the convenience of consumers and to provide them with a real-time experience of apartments and buildings without being present on the spot. Similarly, these technologies are creating room for improvement and changes since they can predict what property or buildings will look like before their development.
As evident from the name, big data is a medium of mass storage from which useful information is extracted and can be processed for market analysis, assessing client needs, and formulating new trends. Big Data can correspond to AI which can boost productivity in the real estate sector and give a holistic picture after assessing various factors and trends of the market.
Wearable equipment in real estate is relatively a new concept and its significance is yet to be gauged. Wearable equipment is being mostly used for data collection like observing workers health and tracking their location.
Drone technology is being widely used in the real estate sector, to market aerial videos and images to provide a comprehensive insight to potential buyers which increases by buying and selling. The insights can be in the form of adjacent localities and neighbourhoods which cannot be gained through conventional images.
Graana.com and RealTech
After recognising the gaps in Pakistan’s real estate sector, and overcoming the needs, Graana.com – Pakistan’s First Online Real Estate Marketplace was introduced. The PropTech pioneers transformed the conventional real estate practices by utilising these technologies in the most optimum capacity.
Incorporating the concept of the Internet of Things, Graana.com, through its smart portal and app provides easy access to people using the internet anywhere in the world to buy, sell, rent or invest in Pakistan’s real estate. The listings on the Graana app include detailed media including photos, videos and drone shots, for the best real estate coverage. helping people to market their homes easily, and those to find the right house.
In addition, Graana.com was the first one in Pakistan to utilise Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality (VR and AR) to market investment projects, by giving clients a complete perspective of the project, its key features, and its ambience without the wait for its actual inception.
When the worldwide economies were hit due to the outbreak of COVID-19, Graana.com through ‘Virtual Tours’ helped people find the right home.