Category Archives: Technology

iPhone Has App For Electronic Sigs on Docs

Kathy Howe

Several days ago a Phoenix REALTOR(r) friend, Kerry Melcher (@Melchak) tweeted that there was a great app:  Zosh.  Next she tweeted that there was also a Zipform app as well.

If you are in the real estate business and have ever had to chase down a client for a signature, these apps are for you.

Yesterday I downloaded both apps.   Today I will set up my mobile Zipform account and work on filling in the blanks of the agreement on my iPhone and then have it signed.  Only practice.

Total price for both apps was $12.98.

Stay tuned.  Tomorrow I’ll let you know how well it works!!

SedonaKathy aka Kathy Howe

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Filed under iPhone 3Gs, Technology

Sir Richard…What’s With Virgin Mobile?

When I think of Sir Richard Branson aka @SirDickBranson, I think of “The King of Customer Care”.

Love Virgin Atlantic Airlines and all your personal touches with the website.  VA makes you feel like you are entering the First Class cabin if only you are traveling in the last row of coach.  I pull up my page and in the upper right hand corner it says:  “hello, gorgeous”.  Now that’s customer service!

So why is Virgin Mobile such a departure from your mystique?

Several months ago I changed from AT&T to Virgin Mobile – it took 4 days, 2 without any phone service (I have only one phone), and the courage by me to call the Investor Relations department of Virgin Mobile in order to get it switched to VM.  AT&T had released it right away, but VM and Sprint allowed it to fall into that virtual abyss where the black hole seems like a warm fuzzy place.

My origial plan of changing carriers was to save money from AT&T.  My contract was up and I thought I would go with Sprint and purchase the Palm Pre as soon as it came out.  I won’t bore you with the facts that one of Sprint’s resellers, Let’s Talk, gave me misinformation about transporting my phone number and cancelled my order because I wouldn’t accept another number.   So I called Sprint who checked with “porting” and said the information was incorrect in that I only had to accept another number till the phone arrived then call Sprint and Voila!  The transport of my old number would take place.

Thinking I would take this event as “someone was trying to tell me something”, I called a friend in Hawaii and we discussed all the geeky things about the phones and the networks.  My experience with Sprint and Sprint’s reseller made me think not to take another chance with Sprint.

On Saturday, 8-15-09, with my normal, unbridled enthusiasm, I went into the AT&T phone store and said, “I want the 3Gs iPhone in white”.  I even put my password (vKey) into the store’s computer, so I know it was correct.  Gorgeous in an orange and black case, I sparkled.

By Wednesday I was still using your VM phone and the iPhone.  So, lacking the same unbridled enthusiasm, I called AT&T who told me that according to VM there was no password.  We were given the run around by 3 different people.  Excuses that the system was going through an upgrade, to we are missing the password, to a request AT&T to change my street address abreviation from “Ln” to “Lane” and an equally inane request to remove the initials from my name .  Do these people know how to program “globally”?

Day 6:  This AM I got a call from AT&T, doing their follow-up.  We started the conference call with VM.  I’m not sure who we started with, but we asked for a supervisor and we got a “team leader” by the name of Mata.  She wouldn’t give us her last name and when we asked to speak with her supervisor, she flatly refused to give us her supervisor’s name.  I lost my normally cheerful demeanor and demanded to speak with her supervisor and explained that I had already filled out a complaint with the FTC (true – done night before), so I had nothing to lose at this point.  I just wanted my new iPhone to be the recipient of calls in and out.  Finally Mata told us the name of her supervisor, “Jennifer” but refused to connect us with Jennifer because Jennifer does not accept phone calls from the consumers.  We were then given an “IVR” number of 888-322-1122 which was the phone number we had called in the first place.

Now my cheery disposition took on “total resolve”, the “squeeky wheel”, you know…  And taking the ball and running with it was AT&T’s very able agent who asked that Mata at least ask Jennifer if she would call the porting department and find out what the status was with transporting my number.  We waited for over 20 minutes to find out that the “updating” of the system had started on the “14th”.  We had been previously told the “15th and 16th” by another agent.  Mata cheerfully said it was just as she had been telling us about the system updating and that my phone number would probably be transported within the “normal” 24 to 72 hours”.

Yikes!!!!  I lost it.  6 days plus another 24-72 hours!  Is this 1892?

I thanked my new friend with AT&T who I convinced to try Twitter while we were whiling away the many, many minutes waiting to hear the “script” again.  She was so cute when she said, “My mother would be saying and doing the same things you are…”  I told her that her mother and I had earned the right to go to the top and work down, which was what I intended to do next:  put in a call to Investor Relations.

Did it work?  You betcha, Kimosabe!  I made my day, Clint!  Probably didn’t make your staff’s day, Sir Richard, but by this time I was high on adrenalin and as most men know, that is just steps from hormonal infusing and PMS-ing.  Luckily I don’t own a gun…

Thanks to the lady who answered the phone at 908-607-4000, and Jose’ at “porting”, I had full iPhone transport within about 30 minutes.

Now I’m a happy camper.

Could you make me happier?  Well, a trip to your Island to spend the weekend with you and your wife, but since that’s not going to happen, maybe a refund of this last month’s charges… ??  I’d go for that to cover a discounted cost of my time today.

Necker Island purchased by Sir Richard Branson over 25 years ago.

Have a great day.

Kathy Howe

PS.  Get rid of that blight on your reputation.  They don’t deserve you.

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Filed under iPhone 3Gs, Technology, Uncategorized

Don’t Post Your Business Stuff on My Facebook Page…PLEASE!

How did something I enjoyed so much become a place that I no longer want to go?

Facebook is for my family and friends.  If I “connect” with you, I hope you will respect my page and only post to me things that are about you personally…maybe an occasional post about what you’ve been doing in business, or where you are going in business, BUT, please do not try to solicit me to buy your books, your training programs, or your children!

LinkedIn, I allow people to try to solicit me.  I figure it’s all about business.  But, not my Facebook page.

Today I “disconnected” someone I “connected” with recently.  His first post to me was an out and out solicitation.  Flush!

Using someone’s Facebook page to advertise your wares is like pinning a note on someone’s child and sending them home to Mom.  Mom does not like that.

We’re all looking for ways to “connect” and I am glad to “connect” with strangers as long as they don’t abuse their welcome.  My page has become so cluttered with videos that I will never watch, business news and comments from people I don’t know, and information I don’t need.  Can I be the only person who is getting p—-d off?

You may “tweet” me with business news, or post on my LinkedIn page, but PLEASE, discontinue posting to me on Facebook.  Give it to me on Twitter.  It goes away and does not go to everyone who views my page.  I’m about quality, not quantity.

It’s called Social Networking for a reason… Facebook is for my chosen friends or people I think I would like to have as friends.

Kathy

Kathy Howe

Kathy Howe

Tweet your news to me at:  http://twitter.com/sedonakathy

LinkedIn: http://linkedIn.com/sedonakathy

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Filed under AZ CE Courses, Pets, Real Estate, Retirement, Sedona Housing, Taxes, Technology, Uncategorized

Is REALTOR.com What You Want It To Be?

Did you realize that you cannot put an address in the Search box on the splash page of REALTOR.com and get to that listing directly?

Do you know that you have to scroll down quite a way to find out who has the property listed?  And then you only get a name and phone number unless the broker has paid to “enhance” the listing with a web address, etc.

Does the consumer realize that there are “rules” at REALTOR.com that don’t allow REALTORS to identify the broker who has the listing?  We get fined for violations if there is anything that identifies the listing agent in a photo or even the remarks.

Do you know that if I want to direct you to my website as the listing agent, I have to pay REALTOR.com to “enhance” the website?

It may be the broker’s listing, but REALTOR.com is designed to hand off consumer leads to the person who spends the most money on “enhancing” or advertising with REALTOR.com.

Those of us who truly believe in the consumer being a real estate educated person believe that the more the consumer knows about the property, the more the consumer understands about the property, the offer, and the transaction.  Yet, we direct the consumer away from the listing agent (unless the agent “pays” to get the consumer to the agent).

Anyone else have a problem with REALTOR.com as it exists today?

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Filed under AZ CE Courses, Real Estate, Sedona Housing, Technology, Uncategorized

Video Camcorders – You Gotta Love the Flip

Until I got my Flip Camcorder, I was completely behind the curve on video clips on my websites…mainly I see so many very bad YouTube contributions that I have avoided the medium.  But, with the Flip and its self-contained software, the USB attachment, and the ability to edit, pull stills out of the video, I have found myself taking the Camcorder everywhere.  For good stills I continue to use my Sony, but for convenience, the Flip is my choice.

Your thoughts?

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