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High Tech Wardrobe: 5 Wearables for Real Estate Agents

September 11 2015

zillow wearables truliaIf you've paid any attention to tech news, or even fashion reports, in the last six months, you've probably heard about the Apple Watch. But with all the media buzz, it's likely you didn't know that there's a world of other smart wearables available to you, from Android watches to jewelry to eye glasses.

If your smartphone and tablet are enough for your real estate needs, these new accessories may seem like nothing more than high-tech hype. However, wearables are more than apps on a tiny screen. Today, we're going to take a look at how this new wave of gadgets can be used in your real estate endeavors.

Smart Watches

Let's start with obvious players in the wearables scene--smart watches. While Apple Watch is the best known contender here, Android's offering, Android Wear, debuted a full year before the Apple Watch. Like Android phones, Android Wear is available from a variety of manufacturers, giving users a wider array of styles, wristbands, and watchfaces to choose from. Bonus: just days ago, Google announced that Android Wear now works with iPhonesAndroid Wear now works with iPhones!

While there are differences between Android and Apple watches, they have plenty of functionality in common. Here are a few of our favorites:

1. Stay on top of listings and leads - While there aren't a lot of real estate specific apps available for smart watches just yet, there are a few, including ones from Zillow (Android, Apple) and Trulia (Android, Apple). The apps will send push notifications right to your wrist to alert you of new leads. They offer a tactful way to stay on top of incoming portal activity without having to interrupt showings or other important moments with clients.

2. Remotely trigger your phone's camera - Sometimes you need to include yourself in a photograph and, let's face it, selfies don't exactly scream "professional." Smart watches to the rescue! The Apple Watch comes with a built-in Camera Remote app that lets you use your watch as a viewscreen for your phone's camera to frame the perfect shot. Just tap your watch to snap a photo instantly or after a 3-second delay. Once the photo's taken, it will appear on your watch. If you don't like it, take another!

While stock Android watches don't come with a remote trigger app, there are plenty available for download. Google Camera is the most basic; it lets you trigger a photo from your watch, but offers no viewfinder capabilities. For that, try Wear Camera Remote. Both apps are free. ForP finer control of your photos, consider PixtoCam. This app lets you control flash, zoom, and resolution from your watch. Even better? You can use it to take videos (which the Apple Watch can't do yet)--a great option when you're shooting property or neighborhood videos alone and want to include yourself in the footage.

3. Keep an eye on sunrise/sunset times - Speaking of real estate photos, the best time of day to capture images is during the "golden hour"--the 60 minutes preceding sunset or after sunrise. Sunlight Watch Face and Widget for Android Wear lets you keep an eye on where the sun is in the sky. This is also handy for agents who want to avoid scheduling showings after dark for safety reasons. On Apple Watches, sunrise/sunset times are built-in and available on several of their watch faces.

4. Act as a remote control for your music - Do you hook your iPhone or Android to speakers to play music at open houses or other events? Both the Apple Watch and Android Wear let you adjust volume or skip songs right from your wrist--useful if you're speaking with a prospect and don't want to excuse yourself to change the music. Remote playback control is built-in on Apple Watch. For Android Wear, music apps like Spotify and Wear Music Controller will do the trick.

Other Wearables

Like we said, though watches get all the attention, they aren't the only wearables game in town. If watches don't fit in with your aesthetic, consider smart jewelry. These pieces are designed to be stylish accessories that complement your wardrobe. Here are a couple suggestions:

  • Bellabeat - This leaf-shaped piece can be worn as a bracelet, necklace, or clip. It keeps track of your stress levels, sleep patterns, and more so that you can stay on top of your health.
  • Cuff - Perhaps the most important application of smart jewelry is its ability to keep you safe, discreetly. While Cuff can track your activity, it also lets you call for help in emergency situations. All it takes is a touch--there's no need to pull out your phone and risk tipping off attackers that you're calling for help.

For tech enthusiasts who care less about stylishness, GlassupGlassup offers smart glasses that put driving directions, emails, notifications, and more right in front of your eyes (literally). Designed in Italy, these spectacles are more subtle and attractive than Google Glass ever was.

Now that you know how wearables can be used for real estate, are you ready to give them a try? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.