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Ravi Bhushan

Ravi Bhushan, Group Chief Product and Technology Officer of PropTiger.com, Housing.com and Makaan.com, is an industry expert with close to 12 years of experience in technology and digital domains. He came onboard PropTiger.com as a Vice President with key focus on enhancing product and technology functions. In his current role, Ravi spearheads new-age technology innovations to strengthen the ground product, design and engineering aspects.

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Technology Trends for 2018 Residential Real Estate Industry

Bitcoin took 2017 by storm with about 12,000 transactions per hour on average. In 2018, the blockchain, the underlying technology behind bitcoin, is expected to attract all eyeballs.

What we once knew as traditional, real estate sector, has now transformed itself significantly throughout the last decade to accommodate technology.

According to CB Insights, the total investment in Real Estate tech start-ups in the US was expected to cross $3.4 billion in 2017, exceeding the numbers for 2016 by a smashing 25%. Millennials poured a lot of money into the home rental market. And, data analytics and forecasting tools stood under the spotlight.

Many industry experts have predicted increased exposure to transparency and data democratisation in residential real estate industry in 2018. Likewise, most speculations for this year revolve around data, analytics, and technology incorporations. I will talk about the three which demand most attention at this point.

1. Blockchain Implementation

Bitcoin took 2017 by storm with about 12,000 transactions per hour on average. In 2018, the blockchain, the underlying technology behind bitcoin, is expected to attract all eyeballs.

The blockchain is real-time. It offers secure peer-to-peer transactions, keeps track of every change, and is entirely transparent. The blockchain technology is undoubtedly an incorruptible and centralised database. It’s ideal to manage cases where assets’ status changes hands or value. The tech is transformative, much like the internet, and can be used for multiple implementations.

In real estate, blockchain can help overcome fraudulent behaviour, eliminate intermediaries, support data integrity, and make transferring, buying, and selling of real estate more convenient.

2. Chatbots and Voice Assistance

The virtual digital assistant market is expected to cross $15.8 billion with a pool of 1.8 billion users worldwide by 2021, according to a Tractica report. Another Oracle survey discovered that 80% businesses plan to use chatbots in one form or the other by 2020.

Both chatbots and voice assistants rely on Artificial Intelligence, which relies on data. The automation is meant to create a conversational transaction using AI.

We can see consumers' preference moving towards conversation via texts and personalised response. AI backed texting and voice services can facilitate convenient communication, just as the consumers expect.

Makaan.com launched a Facebook Messenger chatbot that can interact with Facebook users to service their needs. The bot allows users to have a natural conversation and saves precious time otherwise spent in going back-and-forth between an app and website.

3. Augmented and Virtual Reality

In 2017, Augment Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) saw growth in fund inflow. Many start-ups invested into the tech. And rightly so, considering how it’s expected to generate over $162 billion in revenue by 2020.

AR and VR allow homebuyers to get a better perspective on living in a house, right from the view out of the window to the furniture placement. Developers are increasingly using these technologies to project what their under-construction property will finally look like once completed. These tools are also a great way to reach out to customers living far from the project site, especially non-residents. In India, we are seeing NRIs using this technology when considering a home purchase as it helps take out the ambiguity of how the home will finally look.

In future, Mixed Reality, which includes AR, VR, and IOT, can break the barrier between digital and real life. Mixed Reality and immersive experiences would be a massive help in visualising designs, marketing, reducing time, and cutting cost.

4. Data & Dark Analytics

An IBM Marketing Cloud Report of 2016 revealed that 90% of the world’s data available back then had been created in the past two years only. A French journalist found out that 800 pages of data could be generated from her Tinder profile alone!!

With Dark Analytics, the unstructured data, like text messages, still images, emails, videos, audios, etc., can be studied to infer insights that were hidden so far. It can revolutionise predictive analysis. And once it gains traction, data will gain high ground as competitive currency.

Smarter homes, connective realities, better privacy & personalisation are a few examples of uncharted waters where we may see the real estate industry heading in 2018. With so much to gain from technological integration, this year could very well kickstart a property tech revolution.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house


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Technology Trends Residential Real Estate Industry

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