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Sunday PropTech Review; 13th August 2017

POSTED BY   james
August 13, 2017

It seems like yesterday it got to Saturday evening and I started this section but I’m back.

Some of you will have e-mailed me and would have noticed my out of office making wild claims around an ambition to hold a star float for 10 seconds, perfect my dive bomb, complete 10 roly polys in a row and, and this was the big one, to try and complete the rubiks cube………….here is the evidence for you.

  1. Before I crack on with the main review (a look a some of the best updates since I have been away), a sincere thanks to: 1. Mal and his review reflecting Growth in PropTech
  2. Jude and Curran and their input on the impact of tech on lettings
  3. Wouter and his perspectives on AR and VR in the property market 
  4. Tom and his overview of the CREtech space and its impact Other than that, a quick congratulations on the deal between MetaProp and CBRE – a very clever deal and one that I am sure will benefit both them and others as it progresses. The key now being how MetaProp ensures it gives a true global perspective to the PropTech opportunities it shares – something I am sure they have been planning for a while.

1. This week’s most shared article: One in five high-street estate agents risk going bust, study claims.

Well, here it is; the story that has sparked many a debate in the last few weeks. I wrote a somewhat spirited reprise to this piece, which uses stats and research to predict a sharp demise for the high street agent.

My two cents on all of this is, yes, the high street is under increasing amounts of pressure, but to label it as doomed demonstrates a misunderstanding of the property industry, the way it operates and the values it retains. There was plenty of press coverage of this; such as this piece on Countrywide, and this report from the BBC.

2. Proptech firm comes up with real-time facial recognition to help agents with Right to Rent.

PropTech startup, Credas, has developed real-time facial recognition technology with the aim of helping letting agents meet their Right to Rent obligations. By texting or emailing a link to the app, potential tenants can verify themselves from anywhere, and at a time that suits them. This sort of innovation goes easily unnoticed amongst the noise of PropTech, but it’s this kind of technology is helping PropTech go from strength to strength.

3. Article of the week – Trust – the fundamental flaw at the heart of tech-driven business.

Maybe I’m making this the article of the week because I’ve been away for the few weeks and feel the need to let you all know I’m still here, but I also believe this is an essential issue that needs all of our attention. The BBC Watchdog exposé of Purplebricks was the central subject of watercooler talk this week and has thrown the idea of trust under the spotlight. Without it, PropTech is doomed, so any action that forces our industry’s integrity into question needs addressing to help ensure it doesn’t happen again.

4. UK Commercial PropTech: On The Rise, or a Case of Premature Infatuation?

Delivered through the medium of an extended knob gag, Michael Marciano asks a serious question; is 2017 actually going to be the year of meaningful change that we are all expecting it to be? The industry is currently growing, in both size and recognition, at such a rate that it’s easy to get carried away, perhaps overconfident. While I have no doubt that we are heading towards a prosperous future, it’s always important to step back and take stock of what we’ve actually achieved so far, and the means by which we did so.

5. Years Of British Ridiculousness Pave The Way For UK PropTech Boom.

An article written for an American audience, discussing the current state of UK PropTech. An interesting overview of the past 8 months in property innovation and it all ends with an intriguing theory on The Boris Effect. When you look at it all in one go, we really have had an impressive year so far, despite sketchy politics and geographical uncertainty.

6. Featured Article – Propy Press Release: The Property Industry’s Very First ICO Offering.

The Silicon Valley-based global property store, Propy, has announced that it will be introducing the property industry’s first ICO offering.

Propy CEO, Natalia Karayaneva, says: “Blockchain technology is here to revolutionise the economy as we know it, but it remains immature. We are not blockchain romantics. We are not making extravagant claims and offering some massive quick fix that we’ll be unable to deliver. “We’re pragmatic, seasoned businesspeople with a sober, clear-eyed understanding of cryptocurrency’s current limitations and commercial and regulatory obstacles.

7. The jobs being overtaken by robots: in pictures.

A great overview of the impact that robots are already having on our economy. The rate at which AI and robotics are improving is astonishing and new industries are being disrupted by their roll out every day. As this piece tells us, even news agencies are now using AI to source and write news stories; maybe we’ll see an improvement in the Daily Mail’s journalism?

8. These smart cities in Italy put Silicon Valley to shame. This is a brilliantly entertaining read about the best of the best smart technology found in Italian cities. From cities dotted with sensors for real-time taxi locations, to bus stops with free-to-use USB ports and smart air conditioning.The perfect Sunday morning read.

9. What will London look like in 2020?

Thanks to Ashley Perry for sending this one my way; a really great roundup of the recent ULI Tech Conference. Essential reading for anyone interested in or affected by the issues of big data and connectivity. What is a smart city? How do you build one? And what will Smart London look like? 

10. All my recommended PropTech reads of the week.

As always, I like to list all the articles I have been looking at and reading through this week so here is a complete list in case you want more. Hope you enjoy them…..

I’m off to the Harry Potter Castle today so, until next week…..


PS. look out next week for a full programme of Autumn events to attend – it is filling up like you wouldn’t believe…..

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