On the back of Domain recently announcing a partnership with 1Form, today they launched a very nifty iPhone application. I am lucky enough to own an iPhone so I eagerly downloaded the application and took it for a quick test drive.
The initial look and feel of the application is a much needed improvement on the mobile phone website which Domain currently provides property seekers (which is far inferior to that of REA’s). The layout, design, functionality and speed of the application is excellent highlighting some time and thought has been devoted to developing it.
A few features worth noting include:
- Option not to include surrounding areas – Unlike Domain’s website, the user is provided with the option not to include surrounding suburbs in search results.
- Results Ordered by Latest Listings – By default, search results are ordered by latest listings rather than featured properties.
- Show More Results – Similar to how Twitter limits tweets. Search results are limited to 10 and at the bottom of the page the user has the option to select further results, reducing the time it takes for the page to load.
- View Images – Users can view images in a slide show and can zoom in or rotate images, alternatively they can view all images in a thumb grid.
- Add to favourites – Users can save properties they are interested in and quickly switch between favourites and search results.
- Distinct Call to Action Options – The user has a number of options available to contact the agent. These include email, call their mobile and through their land line, making it extremely easy for the user to make that next step.
Any improvements needed? The application could pinpoint the users location through the phone’s GPS so the initial search can more quickly be performed. They could also include the property location on a map, an option to email a property to a friend and some way to email your favourites to yourself or another person.
There are a few teething issues. On a few searches it returned zero results, whereas I searched the same fields on my PC and I received 23 results. From my preliminary investigations this seems to be because of a property type issue as they are grouping types. This needs to be sorted out ASAP.
I really like how Domain have focused on the user’s experience rather than whats best for generating advertising revenue, resulting in an application which is a pleasure for the consumer to use. Lets hope they transfer some of this technology over to their mobile phone website!