Zillow has launched free 3D home tour technology for its listings across Canada and the U.S.
The company says its Zillow 3D Home is an AI-powered mobile platform for iOS devices that allows anyone to capture 360-degree panoramic photos of a home and create a 3D tour.
“Making 3D home tours available for sellers and agents to capture and add to any listing, for free, in the U.S. and Canada is a huge milestone in our work to make the real estate transaction a more seamless, on-demand experience for consumers,” says Josh Weisberg, Zillow’s senior director of product development, 3D and computer vision. “Previously, 3D tours were only found on high-end or expensive homes, due to the high cost and time-intensive capture process. Now with 3D Home, adding an immersive experience to a home listing is fast, easy and free.”
Zillow piloted the program with Century 21 Heritage Group in Richmond Hill, Ont. and Century 21 Fusion in Saskatoon. Here is an example.
Zillow says it initially began field testing 3D Home in January 2018 in select U.S. markets.
It says that according to Zillow research, 45 per cent of Gen Z and 41 per cent of millennial buyers find 3D tours or recorded video of a home very or extremely important in helping them decide on their home. “This trend only stands to increase given these tech-savvy generations now make up the largest group of first-time home buyers,” the company says.
The company says real estate professionals can capture an entire house in as little as 15 to 20 minutes. During the 3D Home pilot program, agents reported that listings with 3D tours attracted more potential buyers, earning higher listing views and engagement than those without 3D media, it says.
The app, currently available for iOS devices, works by capturing 360-degree panoramic images, using either the iPhone’s camera or a 360-degree Ricoh Theta V or Z1 camera that integrates with the app. When using only an iPhone, photos are shot within the app as on-screen instructions provide guidance for capturing the best possible images. Once the entire house has been shot and photos are uploaded to Zillow, the app uses “several sophisticated technologies in tandem – from computer vision to deep learning – to stitch together seamless 3D tours, enhance photos’ exposure and select thumbnail images that best represent each room,” the company says. Once complete, tours are immediately available in a My 3D Home dashboard to edit, share privately, or add directly to a listing on Zillow.
“We at Century 21 Fusion are very excited to add 3D Home as another tool in our toolbox. Offering immersive tours, for free, is just another reason why Century 21 chose to partner with Zillow,” says Gary Busch, broker/owner, Century 21 Fusion.