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Digital toll road in real estate online?

Craig Campbell wrote:
  >         I forsee a time in the not to distant future when a large
  > percentage of transactions are done online.  This means that if any company
  > controls the Internet we are all under their thumb.

You can already get 80% of RE listings on line but you must call a REALTOR to get the address.

A survey of real estate educators, published in The Real Estate Professional, predicted that the number of sales on line will jump from 3% to 47% in the next 10 years; while the Multiple Listing Service, MLS, would decline from 79% to 41%.

As for control, there are 25,000 real estate related websites now, but I fear that MS's integrated service delivery system (see slide 4.2 below) could position itself to control the digital toll road (Electronic Data Interchange or EDI) , and collect micropayments, from members of the real estate industry in the future.

Any comments on the slides below?

Bill Wendel
RE Cafe

Excerpts from presentation on Thursday:

SLIDE 4.1 Lucrative opportunity to integrate content

MS plans to integrate its portfolio of consumer web sites into Boardwalk (Matt Kursh, Sidewalk)
News and community
Interactive Media
Services "essentials"
Local information

SLIDE 4.2 Lucrative opportunity to integrate service delivery, showcase
software applications & partnerships

Windows '95 / Window '98
Internet Explorer
Leverage $1 Billion investments in two cable companies
Leverage $1 Billion investments in satellite companies
Leverage $500 Million investment in WebTV
Leverage investment in three leading makers of interactive audio and video
"MS is positioning itself to dominate the emerging TV/Net hybrid market." (The  Nation)
Relocation clients book travel on Expedia
EDI = digital toll road, MS trying to control ?
MS partnered with Datatrak
Uses Active X
(Datatrak site crashes on my Mac using Netscape Communicator)
Money 98
Collect "micropayments" on mortgage payments via Money '98 or Quicken which
also uses IE as embedded browser (SJ Mercury)

4.5 Fine print: collect and resell info on users like Money '98? (SJ Mercury)

Craig Campbell wrote: 
  I've seen the IE4 desktop integration, and it makes a seamless take 
  over of the desktop.  The average user would have a very difficult time 
  switching to any other browser.  This along with the information of the 
  slides shows Microsoft positioning itself as a major factor of control in 
  future Internet development.