At Marraum, we’re proud to use virtual reality (VR) technology as standard. It’s an instrumental part of the design review process, allowing us to visualise exactly what a client’s new space will look like. For the client, a virtual reality walkthrough enables them to see the space in its fullness before a single brick has been laid.
This begs the question: if VR is so transformative for the architecture industry, why aren’t more firms using it?
Even though virtual reality walkthroughs are the next logical step in the evolution of the architectural design process, there are a couple of reasons why the uptake hasn’t taken off just yet.
Why VR isn’t standard practice in architecture (yet)
Although VR is more necessary than ever for architects, its use in the architecture industry is still in the early stages of adoption. Below are 5 barriers to entry as far as the technology is concerned.
The biggest barrier to entry right now is the initial cost of the equipment. VR technology isn’t cheap to set up; headsets are still expensive and you need a powerful PC to run the software at a desirable performance. That initial budgetary requirement can be a bit of a deterrent.
However, the great thing about VR tech is that once you’ve bought it, you’ve got it, and there aren’t any routine payments you need to make after that. It more than pays for itself in the long run by drastically minimising the number of design redrafts. For many firms, though, that initial cost will be enough to put them off for now.
Lack of awareness
Because the technology hasn’t been widely adopted in the industry, there’s also the issue of professionals just not being aware of its potential benefits. However, as more firms like Marraum start to adopt it, this will change in due time.
The use of VR technology requires a certain level of technical knowledge, and not all architects may have the necessary skills to use it effectively. In fact, many firms that do offer 3D design are outsourcing it to other design agencies because of that knowledge gap. However, as awareness increases, so too will availability and ease of training.
Put simply, VR is shaking up the architecture industry and forcing the renewal of a classic practice. The transition from 2D to 3D design alone is tough for many legacy firms. VR is a further evolution that many architects may simply not have the capacity to incorporate into their day-to-day processes.
Resistance to change
As mentioned, architecture is a traditional industry. With such a revolutionary change, there will be those who simply don’t trust the technology, or believe it can’t do a better job than the tried-and-tested formulas of old. Like most of the other points on this list, though, it is likely that its use in the architecture industry will become more widespread with time.
Find out more about VR in architecture
VR’s ability to provide clients with immersive and interactive experiences, as well as its potential to reduce costs and improve the design process, make it a valuable tool for architects.
Marraum was one of the earliest adopters of VR technology, not only in Cornwall but throughout the UK and globally. We’ve been delivering clients beautiful and harmonious spaces for years, and VR has played a major role in meeting their briefs and producing designs that align with their visions.