The Apple Watch is available from today in nine countries around the world. As iFans clamour to get their wrists on the new device, real estate companies have already launched a wave of apps to help with house-hunting.
The device, which connects with customers iPhones, is designed to make communication more convenient and immediate, with information available at a glance.
After online-only pre-orders began in March, the watch is now available in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the UK and the US. While fans will be rushing to get their wrists on their own smartwatch, though, real estate companies are already ahead of the game, designing their own apps to work with the wearable technology.
ImmobilienScout24 was first out of the gate at Apple’s introductory event in San Francisco, announcing its new app to allow watch-users to hunt for flates from anywhere. Users will receive new offers for saved searches on their wrists, as well as photo and key data on the property. Users can also search for flats in their immediate area.
Australia’s Domaun Group were close behind with their own app, which allows users to search and view property information and photos with “one touch”, as well as receive notifications on relevant properties plus when details or inspection times upate.
The Apple Watch will not be available in Brazil today, but the country’s ZAP has also launched its own app, expanding its iPhone app to allow users to check price trends in the neighbourhood where they are, as well search for properties and contact advertisers through their phone or by message.
Idealista has since launched a new update for its iOS app, which will provide notifications to Apple Watches, displaying a visual – and vibrating – alert as soon as property that meets a user’s criteris is published.
Trulia has also introduced Trulia for Apple Watch, which will deliver the now-standard notifications based on proximity to new homes on the market, as well a browse function to see what homes are available to buy and rent nearby. Users signed into their account can send a message to the agent, or can seamlessly contact the agent through their iPhone.
The wearable device marks a natural extension of the current trend towards mobile house-hunting. Indeed, the release of Apple Watch arrives in the same week as Google has introduced a new algorithm in its search engine rankings that will prioritise websites that are compatible with mobile devices.
“The majority of Trulia’s visitors are using mobile devices, because real estate search is ultimately done on-the-go and we are already providing a great experience for that,” says Jeff McConathy, Vice President of Engineering for Trulia.
“We are focusing on providing lighter, location-based, relevant information that improves the home search experience.”