By Stefanie Hahn
Yelp has become a verb in my world. Where should we meet for lunch? Let’s Yelp! Yelp lets me see restaurants near my current location or a location that I chose. Yelp shows me the name, address and type of food, plus the overall rating by reviewers and bonus — I can see how many people have reviewed the place. When I select a restaurant off the list, I have more options… map, phone number, I can read reviews; see photos and really feel comfortable with my dining decision.
Want more from your texting? chompSMS is a replacement for your standard Android text messaging platform and is loaded with customizations and extras galore. Of course you can change the look and layout of your text messages, add a signature, use quick compose and reply features, but they have some super cool features too. You can customize how you are notified when a new message comes in, down to the color of the LED light that blinks and even select a ringtone for a specific contact. chompSMS has a “speak text” feature that will speak your text messages to you so you don’t have to actually read them. Who doesn’t need that?!
Smarter Agent is my favorite way to check out a property online. It’s fast – easy to use and makes me look, well … smart. I can look up homes for sale, for rent and recently sold. Smarter Agent will map the homes or give me a list. I click on the property I want and I can see all of the photos, listing details, property description, interior and exterior features, utilities and building info, neighborhood and school info and – this rocks – similar recently sold. The link above is technically for consumers, but anyone can use it. Brokers and agents can also have Smarter Agent branded for a fee.
We are always on the move these days. Google Voice in its entire beta version splendor can help you make sense out of all those mounting voicemails. Well, maybe I am stretching it by saying, “make sense of” … more like, help you keep track of all of those voicemails that you listened to but couldn’t write down while you were driving and what did that person say again? When someone calls my office or my cell, they are forwarded to my Google Voice number. If I do not have the caller saved as a contact, they are asked to say their name before I have to accept the incoming call. I can have different voicemail messages set-up to play for different groups of contacts – so my work contacts hear my work details and my personal contacts hear a less worky version. When someone leaves a message, I get an e-mail with the message transcribed into text, plus a playback so I can hear the voicemail as needed. The Google Voice app shows me the text transcription and also gives me a playback option.
I take a lot of little notes and work off of many lists every day. I have found this particular app to be super easy to use and I love that I can use my Google account to sync everything together. I organize my notes with hashtags; keeping multiple notes and lists this way is a snap. I can also set reminders for those that I need to tie to a calendar event. 3banana Notes offers a decent amount of customization, plus I am able to attach photos and share notes and lists via e-mail or my social networking sites.
Stefanie Hahn is the education director for Coldwell Banker Hearthside, REALTORS® in Willow Grove, Pa. Visit her Web site: www.StefanieHahn.com.