The construction industry is on the brink of a profound shift with the integration of augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) technologies – advancements that promise a radical redefinition of design, planning, and execution in construction projects.

The collaborative potential of these technologies extends to project management, safety training, and customer issue resolution showcasing a transformative trajectory for the industry, says data and analytics organisation, GlobalData.

“The integration of AR/ VR in construction can transform design and planning,” says Saurabh Daga, associate project manager of Disruptive Tech at GlobalData. “Augmented reality enables realtime visualisation and adjustments, reducing errors and revisions. Virtual reality immerses stakeholders in 3D project representations, promoting alignment before construction.

“These technologies can help streamline project management and collaboration by enabling realtime interaction from anywhere. Additionally, they enhance safety training by simulating on-site hazards in virtual environments reducing the risk of accidents.”

AR/VR technologies are reshaping the real estate and construction industries, exemplified by the recent collaboration between the US startup Vizalogix and construction solutions provider Texada. This partnership combines Vizalogix’s AR-enhanced video call solution with Texada’s platform, facilitating improved communication between construction equipment dealers and technicians and thereby enabling the prompt resolution of customer issues.

GlobalData’s Disruptor Intelligence Centre cites significant AR/VR advancements in the construction sector including US-based Trimble’s AR app for construction workers, British construction tech startup XYZ Reality’s AR headset for providing on-site building information modeling (BIM), and US-based construction equipment manufacturer ACECO’s extended reality (XR) and IoT infused equipment health monitoring system.

“As the construction industry continues to embrace AR/VR, the potential for these technologies is immense,” says Daga. “They are anticipated to become game changers in construction processes, driving further advancements in efficiency, safety, and quality. However, the industry faces challenges such as the need for significant initial investment, specialised training for the workforce, and integration with existing technological infrastructures. Addressing these challenges is crucial for fully realising AR/VR’s potential in construction.”