Google acknowledged that low adoption rates of the experiment has contributed heavily to the decision to scrap the service. Between real estate companies that offer much more evolved (and often exclusive) property searches on their own websites and classifieds listing services like Craigslist and Khusanamongst many others that are very popular, Google’s real estate search was just unable to keep up.
After less than a year, Google’s experiment in helping people find a home is to stop.
One of Google key philosophies is to take risks and to experiment. To that end, in July 2009 they announced the ability tofind property for sale or rentdirectly on Google Maps. This is one of the “search options” next to the search box on Google Maps, and is currently available in the US, Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Japan.
In part due to low usage, the proliferation of excellent property-search tools on real estate websites, and the infrastructure challenge posed by the impending retirement of the Google Base API(used by listing providers to submit listings), Google has decided to discontinue the real estate feature within Google Maps on February 10, 2011.
Google has learned a lot and been excited to see real estate companies use Google Maps in innovative ways to help people find places to live, such as Coldwell Banker’s use of Google Maps and YouTube, or Realtor.com’s Android app that lets you draw a shape on a map to find all properties you’re interested in.
Yet Google recognizes that there might be better, more effective ways to help people find local real estate information than the current feature makes possible. They will continue to explore this area, but in the meantime, Google offers other options to home-seekers: you can still access other information in Maps such as local businesses, directions and transit times, as well as aerial and Street View imagery to explore where you might want to move, and also use Google search results to find helpful real estate information and websites.
Real estate companies can also continue to use tools from Google to help connect with buyers and renters who use the Internet to research properties. For example, companies can use the Google Maps APIto embed customized maps that are useful to potential clients right on their own web pages. The Google for real estate professionalssite contains various methods for generating leads and improving real estate business operations.
This article based on info from Google Lat Long Blogon Wed, January 27, 2011