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New Realtor.com iPhone app makes search more intuitive

Since launching in January 2010, the Realtor.com iPhone app has been downloaded over 1.5 million times and according to Clareity Consulting, visits, e-mail leads and phone calls from the Realtor.com real estate search iPhone app rose over 60% in the second quarter of 2010 as compared to the first quarter. Recently, a new version of the iPhone app has been released to the public with a variety of updates.

As one of the most downloaded real estate apps, it is well used by consumers and agents alike. The new version has quite a few additional features that are mostly consumer focused but are helpful for agents as well (and good that agents know how it works for when their clients call, having used it).

Click here to download the app or click here to watch a video about some of the features (although the video hasn’t been updated to see the new features, but it will give you an idea of the existing features).

New app features:

  1. Area highlighter– with your finger, you can draw a shape on the map and limit your search to that area. This is definitely a trend you’ll be seeing going forward with other real estate apps.
  2. Location browser– allows consumers to browse cities and neighborhoods via a location directory. This is helpful for your relocation clients so they can expand their knowledge of the area in browse mode.
  3. Recent locations– it remembers the last five locations searched. Oh snap!
  4. Listings shared by SMS (text)– cool feature for people to share listings with spouses or even you as the agent directly. Appeals to those who are using an app that need some non-iPhone action in their lives too.

They’ve also expanded the search filters and it’s iOS 4.0 compliant (whereas many others are still barely testing on iOS 3.0). The new app has calendar integration to remind users of open houses they opt into which is cool but I don’t think this feature will be used much (although it appeases the open house fanboys).

16 minutes per session

Realtor.com President Errol Samuelson said, “we’re very pleased consumers that have the Realtor.com Real Estate Search app are using it approximately 16 minutes per session, and we attribute their engagement to the quality of the app and the important role it plays in their search efforts. We look forward to introducing additional mobile search products later this year that will support the needs of both consumers and real estate professionals as they navigate real estate.”

We’ve been playing with the app for a few weeks now and it’s pretty cool. It’s smooth, easy to use and intuitive. We hope that in the future there will be more features that facilitate the consumer/agent relationship and it would be nice to see some eventual augmented reality innovation. Agents having the ability to customize the app to provide to their clients would be a great feature as well. Although there are a fair share of Realtor.com haters out there, consumers don’t care or know about industry politics and they’re downloading the heck out of it.

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Miami Realtor, Ines Hegedus-Garcia said, “Many will criticize this as a tool of disintermediation, but if we are smart, we will not only know how to use this information in our favor, but we will welcome it with open arms.”

Lani is the COO and News Director at The American Genius, has co-authored a book, co-founded BASHH, Austin Digital Jobs, Remote Digital Jobs, and is a seasoned business writer and editorialist with a penchant for the irreverent.

21 Comments

21 Comments

  1. Sheila Rasak

    September 8, 2010 at 8:02 am

    My title rep came by my office yesterday to help me download their latest app. I’m so excited! If I’m out searching for homes (aren’t I always?) and I see one that I like, I simply type the property address into their app and BAM, I’ve got all the details from the MLS.

    Now if I could just find an app to have dinner ready for the family when I got home…

  2. Bruce Lemieux

    September 8, 2010 at 9:57 am

    Thanks Lani. I downloaded it and checked it out. It really is a fantastic app.

  3. white bear lake mn homes for sale

    September 9, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    The area highlighter will be a great addition to this already very handy app!

  4. Rob McCance

    September 10, 2010 at 10:02 am

    Yeah, this app is slick and well designed by the developers. If you ever need a app done, you should figure out who Realtor.com used to develop it and hire them.

    That said, what is the purpose of Realtor.com?

    And, has it ever actually benefited an Agent – those who pay for it with their $400/year dues? And by “benefit” I don’t mean making it easier to use your iPhone to find homes, I mean something real, like landing clients.

    Maybe I just operate in a black hole here but in 5+ years, I don’t see how it has ever benefited ME, a dues paying member.

    I’m sure this has all been gone over before in great detail on other dedicated posts, so sorry about the Qs.

    RM

  5. Nick Nymark

    September 10, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    Very cool can’t wait to check it out

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