Joel Burslem at 1000watt had a great post yesterday about the potential for application developers in using Apple iPad. Multi-touch technology, as Joel says, will bring back simplicity in search. Case in point: Yahoo's new Sketch-a-Search application. A user can draw on the map to "lasso" results and confine their search for places of interest to specific regions.
The adaptation of touchscreen and multi-touch services for real estate search will depend on the flexibility of the content it is attached to.
It's worth mentioning that our Listings Search Engine API is equipped with the capabilities to take advantage of rich search experiences quickly.
Onboard's Listings Web Service API allows you to send in a polygon and retrieve all the listings within that polygon, whether it was drawn in a computer browser or on a touchscreen.
In addition, applications built with widely available services like Yahoo! Sketch-a-Search, Google Maps or Bing Maps can be easily integrated with our web service to deliver a cutting-edge search experience. The developer simply needs to capture the polygon created in that app and send it to our service.
These advances in mapping applications will continue to help reduce development time and effort. Keep in mind, most of these devices also have GPS capabilities so a latitude/longitude point can be quickly determined so the user doesn't have to input anything. Of course, the Onboard Listings Web Service also accepts a point and radius to conduct a search. For more accurate results, the service also approximates drive times and walk times so people can search for listings within a 20 minute walk from where they're standing, for example.
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons