Virtual Tour Software Enhances the Virtual Reality Experience

virtual tour software market

Virtual Tour Software

Virtual Tour Software is a tool that is used by various companies or tour operators to create virtual visualizations in the form of a panoramic 360-degree view of a specific location, allowing users and customers to visualize and experience the location without being physically present in the location.

These types of software are commonly used as marketing tools by businesses in different industries such as travel agencies, real estate agencies, hotel marketing teams, school and academic environments, and many others. Real estate agencies use this tool for conducting the sale of a house without the necessity of being in the location.

The virtual tour software will contain a pre-recorded video/image of the house, which customers will be able to access through the virtual tour software, with the agency guiding the customer in the virtual tour software. Similarly, virtual tour software is well known to be used by travel agencies to sell travel packages to customers who wish to travel to specific locations in the world, allowing the travel agency to create a 360-degree visualization in the form of images or videos of different destinations for prospective tourists. School and Academic environments are also known to make use of virtual tour software in the current period. It is commonly used for virtual visits to museums and other historic locations or integrated into the learning curriculum for an immersive and exciting learning experience.

The increasing growth of GPS software propels the virtual tour market.

A global positioning system (GPS) can be defined as a space-based system of satellites that provide information about the location and time around the world. Google Maps is one of the largest GPS software applications that is available on various mobile phone devices. Google Maps allows users to use the free mapping platform which provides information about the geographical regions and sites around the world.

Google Maps consists of information and details about an estimated 99% of the geography, which includes latitudes, longitudes, weather conditions, names of locations, names of streets, and many others. Google has stated that Google Maps users contribute more than 20 million pieces of information daily to the map application, which accounts for 200 contributions per second.

One of the many features in Google Maps is Street View, which is a virtual tour integration that allows the user to move on a virtual space in the Google Maps application. Street view allows the users to visualize the location without being present physically and allows the user to move from one location to another virtually with the use of arrows. The increasing usage of Google Maps will be a driving force for the growth of virtual tour software worldwide. Google Maps is known to be commonly used in mobile phone devices, with an estimated 54% of the global smartphone users accessing it. it has been also found that Google Maps accounts for an estimated 1 billion users monthly. Google Maps accounted for an estimated download count of 9.12 million in 2022 in the United States. Among the many users worldwide, 4.41 million people in Germany have used Google Street View, increasing the popularity of Google Maps.

The increasing growth in real estate applications propels the virtual tour market.

The real estate sector has displayed an increase in the adoption of virtual reality software and hardware for increasing real estate sales. Virtual tour software allows customers to experience an immersive field of view of a preferred house in a virtual space, which is further guided by the real estate agent in charge of the virtual tour. Virtual tour software allows real estate brokers to target suitable buyers by offering a 360 virtual tour and uncover leads by integrating virtual reality, enhancing the customer experience and satisfaction.

Square Yards is one of the largest real estate marketplaces that has integrated 3D and virtual reality technology in India. They are known to offer real estate information and recommendations through virtual tours of the properties on their real estate website. Square Yards has stated an increase of 70% in their revenues during FY23. The increase in revenue accounted during 2021-22 to FY23 was Rs. 395.6 crore in 2021-22 to Rs. 670.5 crore in 2023. 77% of the business revenue was accounted from India, while the remaining 10% and 13% came from the Gulf and the rest of the world respectively.

Figure 1:  Increase in Revenue, Square Yards, 2021-2023

increase in revenue

(in crores of Rupees)
Source: Square Yards Media

Figure 2: Regional Contribution of Revenue, Square Yards

regional contribution of revenue

(in percentage of revenue)
Source: Square Yards Media

The growing tourism industry propels the virtual tour software market.

The tourism industry is one of the major users of virtual tour software worldwide. Virtual tour software allows travel agencies and tour operators to create a virtual visualization of tourist destinations for customers to visualize without physically being present in the location. Tourism companies have been known to leverage virtual reality and visualizations to display accurate representations of tourist destinations to customers who travel. It is also used by sales and marketing teams for the promotion of tourism or by web content managers who integrate virtual tours into websites or online portals.

The growth of the tourism industry, coupled with the increase in development and advancements of virtual reality, and augmented reality, will drive the growth of the virtual tour software market. For instance, India has one of the largest tourism sectors worldwide and has been ranked 10th among the 185 countries in terms of travel & tourism contribution to the GDP in 2019. As per the India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF), the India travel and tourism sector to India’s economy accounted for an estimated valuation of Rs. 15.9 trillion in 2022, which is an estimated US$191.25 billion. It was also stated that the travel & tourism industry’s contribution to the GDP accounted for US$178 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach an estimated value of US$512 billion by 2028. This increase in the industry is also expected to provide 53 million jobs by 2029 in India. Therefore, the increase in the growth of the industry will provide growth opportunities in the virtual tour market for travel agencies during the upcoming years.

Figure 3: Projected Travel & Tourism Industry’s Contribution to the GDP, India, 2021-2028

projected travel & tourism industry contribution

(in billions of US Dollars)
Source: India Brand Equity Foundation