Hardly a day passes without an email or a Facebook message asking me: “what’s the best Smartphone for REALTORS®?” In turn, I normally ask them the same questions: “do you use Supra? If so, how important is opening the lockbox? What type of contact management system do you have? And, are you willing to take some time and learn a new phone?”
One out of five of the agents I work with decide they don’t want a ‘fob’ for the lockbox and their contact management system prevents them from getting the smartest Smartphone. No problems -- go to eBay and buy a Treo 680 for my AT&T and T-Mobile friends or a Treo 755 for the other carriers and live happily ever after or the next 2 to 3 years whichever comes first.
Now for the other four out of five inquiries, I have a standard answer: based on your carrier, I would look at the Droid and the iPhone. Now some of these people will not let it go at that and respond with “why”. This throws me back to fatherhood and my boys asking why and me telling them because I said so and if you ask again you’re in trouble, but I know that won’t work here.
Well let’s start with the web access. If you haven’t seen what the web looks like on a Droid or iPhone, get somebody to show you. That alone should motivate you to look more at what we call the “Super Phones” which according to experts includes the iPhone, Droid, Nexus One and Pre. Please don’t blame me if your phone isn’t on the list. That’s what the experts say.
The next consideration in my book is apps. What are apps? In the old days, we called them programs and today you can find an app for about anything in life. I love it in a classroom when somebody asks me a question -- my new standard response is “we have an app for that.” You name it, there is an app from shopping to banking, from getting in shape, to finding a bar we have an app for that. Does your choice in a Super Phone have plenty of apps? Apple has about 285,000, and the Droid somewhere between 85,000 and 100,000 depending on who you believe -- and finally the poor Pre, about 4,000 but just wait until HP gets to cranking!
Consumers are discovering what these Super Phones can do in mass numbers. Check out second quarter retail sales;
Before you take this pie chart as gospel, let me explain a few things. Notice the “Sold at Retail,” which means this does not include corporate or enterprise purchases. Some companies will buy a bunch of phones to be given out to employees which would slightly change the chart. Another factor with this chart is that the iPhone 4G was only on the market 7 days of the second quarter and they ran out of phones, so next quarter should look a little different.
The pie chart does show what consumers just like you and I are doing when it comes to buying Smartphones. I do follow market trends and market share all the time. It helps me understand what I should be focusing on when preparing presentations. Rather than putting up last quarter’s pie chart, let me break it down for you;
Operating System 1st Quarter 2nd Quarter Market Share + (-)
Blackberry 35% 28% - 7%
Apple 28% 22% - 7%
Droid 9% 33% + 24%
WebOS (Palm) 4% 4% No Change
Again please consider we are only looking at sales for the second quarter and total market share from first quarter. My point is to look at what are consumers doing today and how it will eventually affect market share.
So what’s the hottest Smartphone out there? The one you will use, the one you will take the time to learn, the one that helps your career and finally the one that will improve your life!
National Real Estate Speaker