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Sunday PropTech Review; 26th November 2017

POSTED BY   james
November 26, 2017

Hoping everyone is well. Before I have the craziness of my son’s 7th birthday party (being a nerf way party I suspect it will end up a little bit like this gathering…..) I wanted to get this over to you. Before I get started, people have often asked how they can send this review to friends or colleagues. I “think” I have figured it out.

If you want me to send this Review to someone , click here Onwards. It seems to be the battle of the research reports this week. I wonder which you will find most interesting but beware, there are over 150 pages to get through between them. Here you go – which one are you going to click first! I will be keeping a close eye on which gets viewed the most and feedback to all!

RICS: The technological revolution and the future of residential property


KPMG: Bridging the gap; How the real estate sector can engage with PropTech


PWC: Emerging Trends in Real Estate – America and Canada admittedly but worth a read

Read PWC

1. This week’s most shared PropTech article: The PropTech Unconference was a great success in Madrid Genuinely a very quiet week in terms of sharing. Last week the most shared article had close to 5,000 shares. This week, barely over 130. Still, I have always said I would share whichever was shared the most.

This week it is all about the “PropTech Unconference” that was held last week – the interesting thing here though is that it was teamed up with InsureTech and FinTech firms – an example this being the first ‘tokenized’ conference. Not sure this works myself so if anyone wants to help explain it, thank you.

2. Microsoft Hololens and Architecture – The Stirling Prize

I wasn’t the biggest fan when I first experienced the Hololens nearly 18 months ago but I have never doubted it is an exciting technology for the future. Where we are today is not a patch on where we will be in the future. As such, it is very apt to watch this 80 second video about the use of Hololens in Architecture and a vision of all those shortlisted for the Stirling Prize – a prize for excellence in British Architecture.


3. Uber puts an order for 24,000 driverless cars

It was only last week I mentioned Uber and their flying cars……now they are talking about driverless ones too. The interesting point however is that this time they are on the market, a deal worth $1.4 billion of the FT is to be believed.

They will own the driverless vehicles and therefore the asset light foundations upon which Uber was built will be no more. They are perhaps looking at the vehicle (pun intended) for their next growth push – when you consider discussions we have had about certain property companies suffering an innovators dilemma this is arguably Uber countering that already and seeing their next development roadmap (pun intended again!) What as this got to do with PropTech? Everything. City design has always been about transportation. Consider also the point raised by Nathan Marsh of Atkins recently stating “There will be a change from I want to buy a car to I want to lease some mobility” – this will all impact transportation and thus the way we interact with our cities.

4. Property Incumbents Must Hedge, and Startups Break Their Silos

A pretty blunt but fair appraisal (I would expect nothing less from Russel Quirk of eMoov) of the current standings with PropTech and the traditional property incumbants.

An interesting “fireside chat” – never really get what this means though I can imagine the Russell I know (not the guy in the picture on this article), with a pipe, slippers and whiskey discussing matters like this aside an open fire about the realities of the market right now. Quotes like:

5. $2million investment from Catapillar into Bricklaying robot

A bricklaying robot that lays 1,000 bricks an hour (and can apply all required mortar and other associated bricklaying material simultaneously by the way) is something that will always get my attention. Therefore what seems like a (hedge?) investment from Catapillar into Fastbrick Robotics is an interesting one. The video is certainly worth watching if nothing else.


6. In the future firms may be more like cylinders

It wasn’t long ago that we heard about the launch of LISA, an legal orientated AI that worked with new lease and lodging capability that allows landlords and tenants alike to cut out the middle man so now it is interesting to get more of a perspective from one of the larger corporates. EY, and their Chief Innovation Officer, Henry Gaskell, discuss how they are implementing AI in their professional services divisions. One example being how they are “taking a 15 hour project for one of our staff down to about three seconds

7. Augmented reality and the property sector

I have held a long belief that Augmented Reality (AR) could be a fantastic technology for the real estate market. Whilst it may not be ready yet we are in an exciting space regarding its capabilities. In this article a comprehensive overview of some of the apps around and then you can also find my opinion on the topic in my latest post through Estate Agent Today

8. I lied……there were in fact 4 market reports out this week!

But this one came to my attention late in the day but nonetheless valuable. Here you go, a look at the IOT market specifically looking at real estate (in Finland!) Worth a read as lots to be drawn from it.

9. Featured Post HyStreet offers Freemium Model

An aggressive move by Hystreet, a firm offering online software for estate agents, saw a significant announcement this week. The page views on this article, about PropTech firm Hystreet offering a Freemium model, were just shy of 3,000 with some quite animated discussion in the comments section.

It is difficult for some to understand how freemium software models work so no surprise some of those comments. Either way, worth a look at what these guys do. Disclosure: I am an investor and advisor to Hystreet

With that now done, I am off to sort out a Sunday and organise the battle armour. Bring it on 7yr old nerf war party. I’m ready.

Have a great Sunday. Till next week. James

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