Zillow.com has been using Virtual Earth for some time now and, in fact, was one of our first customers to integrate and go live with the Virtual Earth platform on their site - just Bird's Eye, though. They were hosting their own repository of imagery, but will now begin enjoying the cost savings of using Virtual Earth with fresh map data, imagery and perhaps a little 3D integration....well, they could if they really wanted to. Read the Zillow blog for more details.
The integration is Flash based accessing the tile server. Perhaps we can convince them to use Silverlight in a future version, but there are Silverlight Evangelists for that! Very similar to what they had previously only now they're using Virtual Earth as their single platform for ortho and oblique imagery. plus our road maps for a cartographic map.
And, we all know Zillow for home valuation with their "Zestimates," but did you know you can actually lookup homes for sale? Not your basic residential real estate site either. Side by side - what it's worth and what it's selling for; neighborhood polygons to highlight and drill down on specific neighborhoods; I even saw a couple houses that were not listed for sale, but we're listed as "Make me an offer." Very cool.
Now, Zillow is no stranger to Virtual Earth so they understand the value of a simple, yet robust platform for developing data intensive, map-based applications. Take for example their Quarterly Home Value Report. The report covers"home value trends and negative equity data for the nation and individual MSAs." San Diego is down 16.9%...ouch.
Needless to say, this was a win-win situation - we get a big name with additional usage, they lower their costs and move to a single platform for developing. All good stuff.
"Zillow.com is an online real estate service dedicated to helping you get an edge in real estate by providing you with valuable tools and information." So, they give you the edge, "They're sitting out there waiting to give you their money. Are you gonna take it? Are you man enough to take it?" After all, coffee is for closers.