Apple kicked its much anticipated annual World Wide Developer Conference today and the news out of San Francisco dominated the mainstream media and tech blogs. You will find no problem finding extensive coverage of the event on the interwebs, so I will spare you with the recap. I watched the video replay of the keynote presentation on the Apple website, and what I took from the presentation besides the desire for a MacBook Pro, is the shear size and success of the IOS App Ecosystem.
Over the past couple of months I have highlighted several new technology start-ups from the commercial real estate sector as the applification of CRE evolves. In the world of commercial real estate technology, start-ups such as 42 Floors and closer to home for me, The Square Foot have garnered most of the attention. These two start-ups are essentially entering the CRE online search and marketing space joining OfficeSpace.com and ROFO in the fight for eyeballs.
While I applaud innovation and wish them all success in their efforts, candidly the online search sector doesn’t interest me much, as I am perfectly happy with the more established CoStar/LoopNet combination as a tool for research and marketing. Should any of these start-ups reach mainstream adoption either by consumers or the brokerage community, then I will be happy to adopt them in my personal use.
In my opinion, while somewhat time consuming, property search is one of the least complicated components of the service a tenant rep provides. Identifying available properties in one thing, but evaluating them and structuring transactions is where the real value is provided by a broker. The day that I am trying to compete with listing data is the day that I have become lazy and lost. However, I am keenly interested in new tools that bring efficiency to my commercial real estate practice, expand my network or enhance the level of service I can provide my clients.
Here a four start-ups I have highlighted with a link to my review: