Saturday
November 1, 2014

Why Your Peers Love Their 2010 Smartphones

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Why Your Peers Love Their 2010 Smartphones

Real estate practitioners from around the country talk about the advantages smartphones have for their business.

“Always Reachable”

“I like being accessible to everybody, whether they prefer to reach me by text, e-mail, or phone,” reports sales associate Jennifer Lyng Watson, e-PRO®, with Lifestyles Real Estate in Santa Cruz, Calif. “I just didn’t realize how addictive my Blackberry Tour would be.” After thoroughly researching her options last year, the Tour’s size, keypad, and always-on e-mail swayed her decision. She’s also used texting to hammer out an offer before making a more formal call. “It’s a lifeline for real estate,” Wynn says of her smartphone. “I only wonder why I didn’t get one sooner.”

“Expert Advice”

Self-proclaimed “gadget geek” Claudio Varo has been using a smartphone almost as long as he’s been in real estate. The sales associate with Onix Realty, Chicago, started with his first of several Windows Mobile phones in back in 2005, before switching to a Blackberry Curve two years ago.

Today he’s proud to carry the Android My Touch 3G from T-Mobile. “The Android has been a real time-saver,” he reports. “With my other smartphones I had to synch my data with my computer. With Android, synching and updates to the operating system are automatic,” he points out.

Varo advises those in the market for a new smartphone to let core needs guide your purchase. “You’ll find a smartphone very handy,” he promises. “You just want to find the one that best fits your needs, and that comes down to personal taste.”

“A Momentous Choice”

Sarah Boggus, e-PRO®, with Century 21 Worldwide in Keller, Texas, found the right smartphone in the Samsung Moment, an Android based phone from Sprint. “I use it more than anything else,” she says of her multi-function handset. “My calendar and contacts are always updated through Google, and I’m getting my e-mail instantly. When I want to find out about property, I can enter an address on the fly and get the information right away — all from my phone.” She has also loaded free Android apps for a mortgage calculator and real estate terms into the phone. “I’m only beginning to learn all I can do with this phone,” she says. “There are still leaps and bounds to go.”

“Comparison Points”

Last year, sales associate Janell McIlwain with Wheeler Realty, Ft. Washington, Md., decided to put the hype surrounding Apple’s iPhone to the test. “I heard so much about the iPhone I just wanted to investigate it for myself,” she says. The decision prompted a move from T-Mobile, and her Blackberry Curve, to AT&T Wireless.

McIlwain considered the Curve a reliable phone with a good keypad, but didn't like its small screen size or limited selection of software apps. She prefers the iPhone’s ease of use, larger screen, and rich catalog of software, especially a business card app that reads cards and automatically enters the info into her contact database. Still, she’s been frustrated with iPhone’s touchscreen keypad, and limited text-messaging display capabilities. “Both are good smartphones for real estate,” she says. “For me, the biggest obstacle with the iPhone is the display size of text messages. If I could just increase that font size, I would say it’s the winner.”