Airbnb wants to offer virtual reality previews of rental spots

Airbnb wants to offer virtual reality previews of rental spots:

Airbnb is developing virtual and augmented reality features to help guests find and navigate rental listings, the company announced on its blog today. Three-dimensional scans and 360-degree photos would allow users to get a better sense of a listing, and augmented reality overlays could help guests better understand the homes on a smaller scale once they’re in it. The company has been looking into VR to build trust between guests and hosts since last year, and this announcement confirming experiments and prototypes could mean a feature is coming soon.

It makes sense to take a look around a listing in VR before booking, but Airbnb also lists a few instances where augmented reality might be helpful during your trip. If you’re staying overseas and everything’s in a foreign language, it could be difficult to unlock the door, or figure out the thermostat or the hot water in the shower. It also lists a fun example of AR usefulness like “pulling up a mobile device to get directions to the coffee mugs … first thing in the morning.” This is a problem that could easily be solved by just opening up a few cupboards and figuring it out, but I get what they’re saying.


Airbnb

Virtual tours have been around in the real estate industry for a while, and Airbnb hosts have been asking for a feature to integrate them into their own listings. While the VR technologies could be implemented by providing Airbnb hosts with 360-degree cameras, it might be harder to integrate the AR concept for individual listings. Since ARKit was released on iOS 11, we’ve seen some concepts of what an AR overlay for Airbnb listings might look like. It seems like a useful and worthwhile idea, but it might be a more difficult challenge for Airbnb to take on.

But until this is a reality, I’ll still be satisfied with charming hand-written binders with tips on the local sights and illustrations on how to figure out the thermostat.

(Via The Verge – All Posts)

Until holodecks arrive, AR not VR will be where the action is

Comment: Until holodecks arrive, AR not VR will be where the action is:

While I’m generally more of a hard-SF fan, I’m not above a little lighthearted fun where sci-fi is concerned – so I can enjoy a good Star Trek episode as much as the next person. And there are a couple of Star Trek toys I think most of us would like to see: replicators and holodecks.

Replicators as the kind of ultimate Amazon Prime, putting anything you might want into your hands instantly. Holodecks as a way to experience any sights and activities you could ever wish, without even having to leave the building.

But while VR might be the first stepping stone toward holodecks, I think it’s augmented reality rather than virtual reality that will be where the action – and the money – is …

more…

(Via 9to5Mac)