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The impact of COVID-19 on the real estate industry | McKinsey

Taking the digital leap

Before the crisis, the real estate industry had been moving toward digitizing processes and creating digitally enabled services for tenants and users. Practically overnight, physical distancing and the lockdown of physical spaces have magnified the importance of digitization, particularly by measures such as tenant and customer experience.

Within residential real estate, players that have invested in digital sales and leasing processes—using virtual open houses and showings; augmented and virtual reality; and omnichannel, targeted, ad personalized sales—will more quickly allow their residents to find the right space for themselves.

When an operator may have to keep its amenity spaces closed for months, creating a differentiated experience will necessarily involve a suite of digital-first products and experiences: telehealth, on-demand delivery and concierge services, virtual communities, contactless access for residents, guests, and maintenance staff, and much more.

As more users adopt these digital-first products and services, users’ expectations will be raised, and players that provide a differentiated post-crisis experience will stay ahead of the curve. These digital offerings will pay dividends in the form of superior loyalty and the ability to create brand new revenue streams while better meeting the needs of tenants and end-users.

Sensative comment: Most of these digital-first products involve the efficient use of IoT technologies, well-integrated with legacy systems into a seamless stream of data. A challenge though can be the multiple incompatible environments caused by vendor lock-ins and different technologies of different ages in the multi-property portfolio. This is the reason behind Yggio, our IoT integration middleware platform, or operating system for Smart Buildings.

The impact of Covid 19 on the Internet of Things v2 min

The impact of Covid-19 on the Internet of Things

How does Covid-19 impact the Internet of Things, its technology, and its applications specifically? We talked to various IoT decision-makers to understand..

Sensative quick summary: even more focus on remote control, automation, digital twins, and smart city & buildings. Less interest in consumer IoT devices and DIY.

overworked buildings

Your Building is Struggling Under Social Distancing, Too

With occupants at least doubling the time that they’re within their four plus walls, buildings are feeling the strain of the great work-from-home (WFH) experiment in a number of ways. They are seeing increased load on their systems and higher daytime energy usage than ever. They are keeping up with service calls and dealing with vendors in the midst of a lockdown. They are communicating with tenants and lenders and investors and just about everyone else they are partnered with. They are experiencing more waste than usual. This uptick in activity is putting extra strain on every part of a building’s operations

Sensative thoughts: The pandemic turns everything on its head. Homes become workplaces meaning extra strain on the property operations. On the other hand, office buildings are empty and should be “turned off” as much as possible to save energy. Empty offices are also attractive from a burglar point of view.

All these rapid changes show the need for flexibility and remote control, two of the most important features of the Internet of Things and Smart Buildings.

m2m managed services 877x432 1

IoT Managed Services Mature, Despite Measured Enterprise Adoption

Managed service providers see emerging technology as a significant source of business opportunity over the next couple of years. More than 50% of respondents to a recent CompTIA survey already offer IoT managed services today, according to the survey.

Sensative thoughts: IoT is difficult and requires it’s competent and qualified staff. The obvious alternative is already picking up speed: Managed IoT Services.

At Sensative we already have contracts that are taking things even one step further, a new business that we call Sensing-as-a-Service. The customer just wants to have the data and doesn’t care about the tech at all. We provide everything and charge based on the data we generate and manage for them, not based on the products we install. Maybe, this will be the new normal in a few years?

cohesionib hero

What Tenants Want From Tenant Engagement Apps and Real Estate Owners

Tenant engagement has recently taken the commercial real estate industry by storm, grabbing headlines, deploying customer pilots, and raising large amounts of capital to bring the tenant-landlord relationship to the 21st century. They seem to have caught on first with office buildings, places where tenants demand a lot of their surroundings and have had the least amount of control over historically. The story behind tenant engagement technology is quite inspirational: giving a way for tenants to communicate with their landlords, […]

Sensative take: adding new technologies should not be regarded as adding new features. New technologies can and will change your whole business, how your customers will perceive you and your product (building), and what they will be willing to pay for. It is about what your vision is as a company, not just developing new apps.

iot hvac

How IoT Is Taking Over the HVAC Industry

The HVAC industry has always been searching for a way to be more proactive. Failure in equipment, even the smallest component, can really hurt a building’s profitability so preventing problems is one of the most important jobs for any facilities manager. But, it seems like only recently has the industry turning the corner and becoming more predictive in remediating failing assets. Couple this with the fact that many HVAC contractors are adapting their services to provide a seamless customer experience […]

Sensative take: IoT means efficiency and cost reductions, both overall and in specific systems like HVAC equipment.

“Besides efficiency, there are plenty of marketing benefits for an IoT enabled building. In 2016, a survey was conducted by Wakefield Research that showed 86% of Millennials said that they would pay extra for properties set up with smart technologies. One of the big reasons for that is energy efficiency and environmental concerns. Smart devices, IoT, smart thermostats are not just providing savings for tenants, but also improving the overall eco-friendliness of multi-family facilities and also increasing tenant satisfaction.”

data driven smart city

Creating a “Data Economy” in the Property Industry | Propmodo

Buildings themselves will start to become massive data creators, just like your computer or router. Starting from construction to demolition, buildings continuously create data. There are sensors that can monitor concrete (yes concrete) strength, temperature, and relative humidity. There are sensors available that can cost effectively measure heat, air quality, traffic, occupancy, you name it. This comes at a cost but it can answer important nagging questions for every building such as “which stairs and elevators are used most?” Or, “which pumps get overheated during peak times?”

Sensative take: The data economy is happening. Slowly and step by step. First, it’s the low hanging use cases like optimizing, automation and reducing cost. Then comes the innovations that exploit the value of the data in new services and business models that will transform the world as we know it. When should you jump on the train? Because it will soon leave the station.

sensative architecture

PropTech 2020 the future of real estate

This report is the successor of the 2017 report PropTech 3.0: the Future of Real Estate, by The Oxford Future of Real Estate Initiative at the Saïd Business School.

The report is almost like a whitepaper about our platform Yggio. Some highly interesting quotes:


“However, smart city solutions are plagued by a lack of digital infrastructure and a severe absence of sufficient national and regional government funding, at least in the US and UK. This poses a large question: do we want to out-source the development of city governance structures to tech providers (such as Google subsidiary Sidewalk Labs in Toronto’s eastern waterfront) or other major corporations?” 
Sensative says NO, we are already supplying the alternative.


“The importance of data has been stressed throughout this report, in particular with regards to improved analytics using machine learning models and the resulting disruptive business models. Any true disruption to the commercial real estate industry will only come once there is the availability of standardized, accurate, real-time, digital data and whoever is the first to reach critical mass will hold a very powerful market position.”

... enabled by Sensative…


Why The IoT Will Save Our Natural Resources

The transition to intelligent information systems will be crucial as global environmental challenges accelerate. Deploying IoT solutions with LoRa-based sensors, together with edge network analytics, makes it possible to install intelligent sensor systems without requiring labor-intensive sensor battery replacements.

In general, deploying an IoT solution is usually complex. Currently, there are limited end-to-end solutions that are available as “out-of-the-box” solutions. Systems integrators are the proper companies to turn to for providing such end-to-end solutions and making sure the relevant back-end IT systems are integrated such that existing processes will benefit from the new IoT data captured from sensors.

Sensative take:

LoRaWAN is an extremely important IoT technology and it grows rapidly. But it will never be the only transport technology for data from “things” to services. There are all the G’s (2-3-4-5G), close-range IoT like Bluetooth, WiFi, Z-Wave, ZigBee. There are mesh technologies. And there are LoRa competitors like Sigfox and NB-IoT.

No one technology will replace the others, all available technologies will have their optimal use cases. The important thing is the data they generate and transport, that the data can be integrated into useful services, that can optimize and change the way we use resources.

That is why our Yggio IoT integration platform is so important.

smart building

How to Get Started With a Smart Building Technology Strategy | Propmodo

Smart building technology seems inevitable. More and more the idea of having a connected, intelligent building has been gaining attention from owners who seek to drive greater asset value, respond to expectations from tenants, and address a general desire to optimize and automate manual processes.  The benefits are pretty obvious. Smart buildings can have improved financial performance while also differentiating the assets.

But, it has become clear that not all real estate firms are making progress and adopting smart building technology at the pace you would expect. The reason is that many are unsure of where to start and how to establish a strategy to deploy these modern technologies.  […]

At Sensative we couldn’t agree more with this article and it’s conclusions. Smart Buildings represents a big change in how you manage a property. It will also change how you build your business.

Our platforms and tech are all designed in accordance with our philosophy: “Think Big, Start Small, Scale Fast”. This enables a real estate owner to start with a pilot, for instance, measure something specific in all properties, like the temperature. Or, on the other hand, test a lot of new services and technologies in a specific building.

What the first step should be is highly dependant on the owner and the portfolio. How to recommission? How to add new IoT, instead of replacing legacy and maybe aging systems? What are my operational pain-points?

This makes our offering so appetizing. Whatever the starting point for going into Smart Buildings, and vision where it will take you, our solutions provide the necessary flexibility for a successful digitalization.


Microsoft Wants Azure Platform to Become “the” IoT Cloud

…there is an obvious need for one company to step up and become the unified infrastructure on which built world IoT can connect and integrate. Microsoft thinks they can be that company…

Sensative’s view:

Is this really what the world and the society want? Having all your data managed and controlled by a monopoly company? What will that mean for competition, innovation, cost, and security? Microsoft is an American company under US jurisdiction and bound by the Cloud Act.

This is very much the same problem as the Google Sidewalk Labs project in Toronto. The citizens of Toronto are not to keen on letting Google own their IoT data too.

The way forward is Open Source and open standards, not a monopoly. That is why FIWARE is so essential.

fiware marketplace

FIWARE Marketplace

The FIWARE Marketplace showcases the best solutions and services based on FIWARE. Do you want your solution to be featured?

Sensative’s IoT platform has just been officially approved as a Powered by FIWARE-platform.

“FIWARE Platform Service Providers offer FIWARE as a Service on private and public clouds in which they are operating. Also, Platform Service Providers can deploy FIWARE platform instances on-premises for their customers. Anyone can create a FIWARE instance on their own and on their premises. But it is also possible to choose a company that offers FIWARE platform services.” – like Yggio with all the added functionality.

Yggio is now published on the Fiware Marketplace in the platform section.



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