Matterport was recently one of the central keynote speakers at the 2016 Future: Property Tech conference in London. Following my recent post on the 3D walk-through kit that Matterport has been developing in collaboration with Boston-based real estate company, Signal, I was very keen to tackle Matterport ahead of the conference. So I was really pleased to catch up with Matterport CEO, Bill Brown, and pick his brains on the future of real estate, VR and immersive imagery.
Who are Matterport and why should the real estate sector know all about you guys?
Matterport is the leader in immersive media, and real estate currently represents our largest customer category. We help realtors create 3D and virtual reality models of their properties. To date, more than 100,00 models have been created in real estate alone. These models create a more immersive experience for buyers. In many cases, site users spend 3x more time engaging with a property through a Matterport model.
What is it about the immersive imagery you produce that you feel is special for the consumer (and the realtor/agent, for that matter)?
Real estate is all about seeing the property, but open houses are time-consuming and inefficient. Anything a realtor can do to demonstrate a property on a Web site or mobile device goes a long way toward pre-qualifying a potential buyer. The introduction of Web photos was a big step at the time, but that time is quickly passing. To truly stand out – while providing the buyer with the best possible representation of a property – realtors are quickly moving to immersive media. Someday people might think about 2D digital photography the way we think about fax machines today.
Given Goldman Sachs recently predicted the value of the AR/VR industry to be over $80 billion by 2025, do you believe this hype and where do you see Matterport expanding to over the next decade?
I can’t speak to specific predictions, but we are very bullish on the growth of the AR/VR industry. The ongoing introductions and improvements in hardware, the proliferation of mobile devices, and the amount of talented and innovative individuals in this industry makes me feel very optimistic. In addition, we see a great deal of organic growth of our Spaces as we expand into other industries such as CRE, travel and hospitality, vacation rentals, business listings, and news and entertainment publishing while also growing internationally.
You recently launched on Gear VR – has this been a successful launch and how are you measuring it?
Yes, we think it’s been very successful. We’ve already had hundreds of customers convert their Matterport models to VR for sharing via our app.
Have you got any fantastic case studies you can share with us – including any quantifiable or qualitative feedback?
Apartments.com, for example, has created over 30,000 Matterport Spaces as of last summer to embed on their property listings, helping turn online browsers into real life renters by ensuring that when renters show up to a property for an in-person walkthrough, they already know it’s a good fit. Since they’ve started using Matterport on listings, they’ve had millions of tour views, and site users spend 3x more time engaging with property listings that offer a Matterport 3D tour.
In addition, our partner Vacasa recently announced that they are moving all of their vacation rental properties to Matterport’s immersive media platform.
If you’d like to learn more about Matterport, you can visit their website here.