This article explores the paradigm shift that has taken place in the interior design space from conventional methods to tech enabled methods and what advantages does this shift bring to the end customer.
Historically, interior designing has been an expensive, time-consuming process that involved collaborating with a designer or contractor to plan and execute projects. Often, even with a clear vision of their dream home, the average customer faces great difficulty in articulating his/her thoughts into words. As a result, this creates a communication gap between the customer and the designer due to which customers end up in situations where the final home does not live up to their expectations.
Conventional interior design companies have operated successfully for a while now but declined to deliver meaningful innovation or undergo digital transformation. Taking a cue from these limitations, several platform businesses have lately emerged with solutions for disrupting this unadventurous industry. New technologies are showing a lot of promise for the future of interior design. It’ll certainly involve healthy doses of 3D Printing, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Smart Homes.
In today’s fast-moving world, customers are unable to dedicate adequate time towards designing their dream homes. While they want to be more involved in the process, their busy lifestyles can become a hindrance. Thus, there is now a dire need for incorporating the latest technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Virtual Reality (VR) in the home interior process, in order to make the process more engaging and thereby enhancing the overall customer experience. From both a customer and designer standpoint, VR is proving to be a game changer for the industry in a very short span of time. Its features allow designers to walk their clients through a room they’ve created and experience the different textures, finishes & lights in real time. For customers, there’s nothing more exciting than getting a glimpse of their enhanced personal spaces, in real time. Any feedback/changes can be incorporated seamlessly in the final design which ultimately provides them with a hassle-free experience.
On the other hand, Augmented Reality (AR) has already made its way into the industry. While AR can’t stimulate total immersion into a virtual world created by software, it can fuse together the virtual and real world by placing virtual features over the actual ones. Another interesting facet of home interiors now is smart home technology which has gained immense popularity in recent times. Customers these days place great emphasis on raising their standard of living and simplifying their housing needs. Smart home concept comprises various technologies and features that are interconnected to one another by Internet of Things (IoT). The concept allows all interconnected devices to communicate with each other and thereby save our depleting resources.
In order to stay relevant, players within the industry will have to consistently adopt the latest technologies and practices over a period. Technology, especially, is now single-handedly the most decisive factor across industries. As customers become more aware about the trends being followed across the globe, their expectations from the domestic players increases. Hence in an industry like ours where customer experience holds great significance, AR/VR, Smart Homes, 3D Printing and AI will continue to be crucial components of the business.
The above article has been authored by Ms. Swati Santani, VP – Design R&D, Design Café.