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8 Accessories that Give Your Smartphone Superpowers (Part 2)

February 28 2018

Want to make your smartphone an even more powerful tool? Rather than turning to apps, let's take a look at what accessories can do for your mobile phone.

Yesterday, we kicked things off by highlighting four types of mobile accessories that enhance your phone's multimedia capabilities. Today, we're going to look at four more kinds of accessories—two that are purely practical, and two that are high tech..

Let's check 'em out:

5. Keyboards

phone accessories keyboardWhile a laptop may not always be practical to lug around, your phone's tiny virtual keyboard is not really suited to extensive typing. What to do? Consider getting a separate keyboard that you can connect your phone to. That way, you can turn your phone into a mini computer screen and execute important tasks on the go without needing a laptop.

The best keyboards are as portable as your mobile phone is, so look for keyboards that fold up or otherwise compact themselves for easy transport. This keyboard by 1byone is a good start. If you don't need your keyboard to fold, try this one by Arteck—the keys are backlit so that you can easily type in low light conditions.

And if you want to feel like a sci-fi superhero, look up 'mobile laser keyboards' like this one by Atongm. These keyboards are not physical; instead, they're made of laser light projected on to a flat surface. The projector itself is cell phone-sized and can detect which "keys" your finger is touching, which it then relays to your phone.

6. Portable chargers

phone accessories chargerThis seems like such a simple suggestion—and it is, to an extent. But beyond the obvious use of charging your phone on the go, portable chargers can also help you connect to clients and prospects.

Here are a few suggestions for using portable phone chargers:

  • Helping clients in need - Here's a customer service move: consider keeping a few portable chargers in your car or bag at all times. At some point, you're sure to have a client with a low phone battery that needs a charge—especially on those day-long buyer's tours. Come to their rescue with a charger--and bonus points it you let them keep it after (double points if the charger is printed with your name and contact info).
  • Set up docking ports at open houses - The law of averages ensures that somebody at your open house will be in need of a quick phone charge. Offer a charging dock like this one that will charge multiple devices at once. And when someone new plugs in, don't hesitate to chat them up!
  • Offer phone charging stations at community events - A few local brokerages always have a booth set up at our local farmer's market, and I can't help but wonder if they'd attract more people if they offered something more useful to passersby than a few printed flyers. Something practical like a phone charging station is a simple way to attract attention at community events like farmer's markets, street fairs, home and garden shows, etc. It not only brings people over, but it gives you a captive audience to engage with.

Tip: Be sure you have a variety of charging cords—Lightning cords for use with iPhones, USB-C for newer Android phones, and micro-USB cords for older Androids.

7. Beacons

Beacons use Bluetooth technology to detect nearby people, and help you interact with them via your mobile phones. For example, a beacon placed in your yard sign can detect passersby and notify them of property info on their phone. Within the home, beacons can push info about a specific room--like the Viking stove in the kitchen--right as buyers enter it.

We're still learning about beacons ourselves, but you can get a better idea of how to use them for real estate here.

8. VR headsets

Virtual reality is at our fingertips today, and all it requires is clipping your smartphone into a virtual reality headset, like the under-$15 Google Cardboard. With the growing availability of virtual reality property tours, you can use the headset to show buyers homes at your office, impress sellers at listing presentations, and even create a multi-home virtual buyer's tour.

What are your favorite smartphone accessories? Share what's in your mobile arsenal on our Facebook page!