10 Great Gadgets for Real Estate Professionals
Looking for more technology gadgets to make your business even more mobile? Check out some of the latest product debuts from this year’s Consumer Electronics Show.
2012 Consumer Electronics Show
The annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is a tech lover’s dream, showcasing the latest technology must-haves for the New Year and offering a glimpse at what the future may hold. Real estate professionals are no stranger to technology, relying on smartphones, cameras, laptops, and the latest products to increase efficiency and mobility in their business. Here, we highlight some of the coolest gadgets at CES for the tech-savvy real estate agent.
Laptop or Tablet?
The Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga, due for release in the second half of 2012, is an ultrabook and tablet all rolled into one. The compact, slim laptop features a 360-degree hinge so that it can be folded on itself and transformed into a touchscreen tablet. Swing it back around when you want to use it as a traditional laptop with a keyboard. It features a 13.3-inch screen, 256 GB of SSD storage, and 8 GB of RAM, and it will boast Microsoft’s new Windows 8. Price: Starts around $1,199
Extend Your iPhone’s Battery Life
Drained iPhone battery getting the best of you again? The Boostcase Hybrid, built for the iPhone 4S & 4, allows you to double your phone’s battery life. An inconspicuous, slim-fit case snaps onto the back of your phone and can hold a lightweight, detachable battery to give your phone that extra boost when you need it. Cases are available in multiple colors. Price: $79.95
A Camera That Sends Photos Wirelessly
Forget the plug. You won’t need to hook the Kodak EasyShare M750 — release date: April 2012 — into your computer to upload photos or videos. The camera features built-in Wi-Fi so you can send photos and videos wirelessly to your computer, Facebook, or e-mail. You can even share photos without a Wi-Fi hotspot by just pairing the camera with your Android, Apple, or Blackberry phone. The 16-megapixel camera also features a 5x optical zoom and in-camera editing tools, and it can record video in high definition. Price: $169
The Xerox Mobile Scanner allows you to scan and send documents on the go. Just insert the document into the portable, lightweight scanner, and it’ll turn multipage paper documents and images into PDFs or JPG files that you can then send wirelessly to your computer, smartphone, tablet, or the Web. It’s being hyped as the first battery-powered Wi-Fi scanner that doesn’t require a computer or a USB port. The scanner comes with rechargeable batteries. Price: $249.99
Always On Call
No cell phone coverage? You can still keep in touch with the DeLorme inReach, which allows Android phones to be transformed into satellite devices. You can then use the device for two-way text messaging, remote tracking, and SOS emergencies from anywhere in the world. It also can be used as a standalone device so if you’re ever traveling to a remote area with clients, you’ll always be in touch and can call for help if needed. Price: $249
Take the Picture, Focus Later
Lytro is introducing the first light field camera that allows you to capture pictures in motion and then focus them after the fact. Even after you already take the picture, you’ll be able to bring anything in the picture into focus, even if it appeared at a distance. Unlike other cameras, the Lytro light camera has several tiny lenses that gather images from all different directions in a field instead of focusing on a particular area as a standard camera does. When you share photos, the capabilities will remain, allowing other viewers to adjust the focus and perspective of the scene in different ways. Price: Starts at $399
A Sophisticated Watch
This James Bond-like watch is for much more than just telling time. It’s a smart watch that allows you a discreet way to keep an eye on your e-mail messages, phone calls, and more. The touchscreen watch can display caller ID information from your smartphone and also allows you to check your e-mail messages, dial phone numbers, and sort through your contacts, calendar, and social networking updates. Use the watch as a speakerphone for incoming calls, or add more functionality to it with specially designed apps. The watch can be paired with Android, iPhone 4, and — soon — Blackberry devices. Price: $329
A High-Tech Desk
Give your desk a high-tech facelift by adding a 40-inch touchscreen display to it. The EXODesk, due for release later this year, has a mammoth tablet screen that can lie flat on the surface of a desk, allowing you to connect, view, and operate your Windows or Mac computer on it. You can use the EXODesk to view what’s on your computer monitor or use the virtual keyboard to use it as a standalone device. You can also use apps on the device, such as a gigantic pop-up calendar and planner for staying organized. The EXOPC and ViewSonic showed off a prototype of the EXODesk during CES. See it in action. Price: $1,200 to $1,500
New Approach to Virtual Tours?
Attach the EyeSee 360’s GoPano Micro to your iPhone 4 or 4S to start shooting 360-degree panoramic videos of your listings. The lens attaches over the iPhone’s camera. Just tap the record button to begin recording. It’ll start recording everything around you simultaneously. After you record the video, you can play it back and look in any direction you wish. You can also download the free app for more viewing features and for sharing options. Price: About $80
The “world’s thinnest smartphone,” slated to hit the market in April, is practically paper-thin at 6.68 mm. The Huawei Ascend P1 S earned the title of “thinnest” during its debut at CES. But despite its small size, it still boasts a lot of features, such as an 8-megapixel camera, 1 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of internal memory, and it can shoot high-definition video. The smartphone features a 4.3-inch touchscreen display and runs Android’s new Ice Cream Sandwich operating system upgrade. The back cover of the phone also features a special coating so it doesn’t get too hot. Price: TBD