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Flash, Java or QuickTime Plugins Should No Longer Be Used For Real Estate Sites or Tours

Published: 11/04/2012
By: larry

I think it's time stand up and say that for practical business reasons if you want your tours and sites to be seen by real estate agents then forget about Flash, Java or QuickTime on any site or tour that you want real estate agents to see.

The simple reason is that iPads are rapidly taking over the computing niche that the laptop once held and Flash, Java and QuickTime don't work on iPads. iPads are rapidly taking over the mobile computing world. They are the perfect device for a real estate agent and agents are rapidly giving up their laptops for iPads. Many agents I know that didn't even have a laptop now have iPads. This is a fact of life so whether you like it or not get used to it. If you don't believe what I'm saying just look at HP, Dell and other companies who's business is built around the laptop. They are all on life support. An it's because of the iPad. Trust me, any business that doesn't pay attention to the iPad will also be on life support!

So as a business person that services the real estate industry you need to pay attention to all the slide shows, 360 tours and video tours your products use and make sure they can be seen and work well on the iPad otherwise you are going to look pretty foolish to your clients. I thought that the importance and significance of the iPad has been pretty obvious for a while but it's obviously not understood by all because I keep seeing lots of real estate photographers sites and tours that use Flash, Java and even 360s that use the old QuickTime player. Flash, Java and QuickTime was great technology in it's time but it's time is over.

Part of the problem is that if you don't have an iPad you may not realize what technology your 360s or slide shows are using. The other misunderstanding I run into when I point out to people their tour or website can't be seen on iPads is they don't understand what to use to fix the problem. Here are some products that are iPad compatible (this is not exhaustive):

If you are not sure about your website or tours you are using get down to your local Apple store or Best Buy and use their display demo iPads to look at your website or tour. Make sure your site and tours are working smoothly and the navigation works on an iPad and that the site fits on an iPad screen.

17 comments on “Flash, Java or QuickTime Plugins Should No Longer Be Used For Real Estate Sites or Tours”

  1. I agree with Larry about moving out of Flash, Java and any necessary plugins for video and graphic presentations. As a website designer I have witnessed the growth of mobile devices through my constant review of Google Analytics on over 30 websites that I have created and continue to monitor. In the past year I have seen mobile traffic sources double in searches performed by these devices. However, with that said, mobiles devices on any one of these 30 + websites never exceeds 20% of the traffic. I do believe that we will see this segment continue to grow, and at some point in the future, will dominate the computer landscape.
    Best Regards,

  2. @Andy-- I'm referring to the QuickTime player that many 360 photographers used and some still try to (between 2003 & 2006 it was use widely for 360s). The main point is just don't have your sites or tours ANY browser plugins.

    @Craig-- Yes Tourwrist is OK as long as you don't expect viewers to have the Tourwrist App. Again the point is that viewers of you site and tours should have to nothing special (like getting a special App) to see you content.

  3. And wait until you see what's coming under Windows 8 - with that version of IE, plugins are not supported either! The writing is on the wall.......all over the place!

  4. I totally Andrew with you Larry. I currently use SlideShow Pro to generate my virtual tours and have now begun adding video clips with the still photos. The tours play on the iPad but the music cannot be heard and the video clips do not flow automatically. Converting the tour to a video and posting on Vimeo takes additional time and effort. Anyone have a better solution?

    BTW Larry I tried to visit your business site but it required flash to view properly on my iPad.

  5. @Terry- Yes excellent point, you caught me not eating my own dog food! Both the 360 and the slideshow player is Flash. I've been waiting for someone to do that in the last couple of years. I actually have the new version of PTgui that has a HTML5 player for 360s and I need to move the slideshows to SlideShow Pro. In the last couple of years the blog has taken over my life and I've not paid enough attention to Now that I've been caught and exposed I need to do something about it:)

  6. ipad as absolutely NOTHING whatsoever to do with this. it's just 1 product. a very bad one btw.
    There's hundreds of other good tablet models, at a 10th of the price, that fully support flash.
    Anyway flash and similar are being discontinued because it's old technology, html5 is vastly more superior in all things.
    I've been saying this for years, that using flash for presentations etc is not a good idea. it's dead. no one will use it in the future.

  7. I just got a phone call from one of my best clients who is upset with the way Tourbuzz is displayed on her Ipad. I was disappointed to hear that there is no music and the formatting changed significantly. I've been super happy with Tourbuzz but I don't like having conversations with my clients where I have to tell them their Ipad won't play my tours like they want.
    This Realtor who lists pretty high priced property uses the tours in her listing presentations and although she likes my photos and tours more, she's still using her old photographers tours during these appointments because they display better on the Ipad.
    I don't plan on leaving Tourbuzz, as I really like their system, but I just needed to vent. It's hard to believe that in this era of technology we still have problems like this!
    Also, Tourbuzz looks great on my Droid tablet!

  8. This is an older post, but I want to add that I've recently come across Juicebox Pro, an HTML5 slideshow builder from SimpleViewer. It can be used standalone or as a plugin to PS or LR. For self-hosting slideshows, I haven't found a better solution.

  9. @Joshua, Thanks for the link! This looks like an interesting product. I'm going to try this out and perhaps do a post on it.

  10. Mark-

    Alan from TourBuzz here. Sorry to hear that your client isn't happy with the iPad version. We are happy to help you if you let us know which tour and what the problem is.

    We developed a mobile experience specifically for the iPhone/iPad/Android, and we are pretty proud of it. In fact our mobile solution is a selling point for our system for many customers.

    Audio doesn't play on the mobile tours because the mobile vendors don't want it to. They specifically make it impossible to play music without manual intervention. A few companies have hacked around this, but the vendors continually plug the holes that the hackers use. Since there isn't a correct and guaranteed way to make it work, we have not offered it since we don't want to offer something we cannot officially support.

    The only other part of our iPad experience that isn't as ideal as we'd like it is our display of panos. Due to limitations place on mobile browsers, only certain size images are allowed, and the panos are too big the way that they're presently formatted. We are looking into alternative ways to solve the issue but so far they've all been too complicated to do easily.

    Please do contact us directly about the tour that isn't working to your satisfaction and we'd be happy to discuss the situation and assist you further.


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