Kitchen & Bath Design News

AUG 2015

Kitchen & Bath Design News is the industry's leading business, design and product resource for the kitchen and bath trade.

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August 2015 | | 5 Editorial { +anice $osta, editor } @KitchenBathDesignNews I magine you're sitting in your ofce, fnishing up some work, when you hear a soft ding. You glance at your smart phone to see that your oven is texting you; dinner is ready. You're still half an hour from home, so your oven graciously let's you know that it's switching over to warming mode, and assures you that your food will be ready when you are. It may even send you a picture of what the fnished meal will look like to tempt you to get a move on. Sound Jetson-esque? It might, but apps like this, which connect you to your oven even when you're away from home, are available now, not sometime in the future. And it's not just your oven that can talk to you. Your shower likely has something to say, too. And don't be surprised if your refrigerator calls the repair service on its own if it starts feeling under the weather. With the latest apps, your smart phone just keeps get- ting smarter. Professionally, that means you can show a cli- ent how six diferent countertop colors might look in their kitchen with the touch of a button, or custom design a faucet for them using nothing but your tablet and your imagination. You can give them appliances that communicate with them, and with each other, in ways that might seem like something out of a science-fction movie. And, you can do everything from drawing designs to tracking your 745 passwords to moni- toring your competition's social media – anywhere, and with an amazing de- gree of simplicity – thanks to some of these apps. Yet many people still believe apps are primarily the purview of the Millennials, a generation that has been alternatively criticized for being both too tech-y and too simplistic. Apps, some initially argued, were simply a high-tech alternative to face-to-face communication, brought to you by the generation that decided texting was bet- ter than talking. But, contrary to popular belief, you don't need to be under 35 to beneft from the wealth of apps available today, a few of which are showcased in this month's What's App department (see story, Page 16). And, just like with apps, the reality of today's Millennials is both simpler and more complex than the stereotypes suggest. In his Design Technology col- umn (see Page 18), Eric Schimelpfenig shares some insights into the Millennial mindset, particularly with regard to the importance of digital communication. He talks about how frms can learn from everything from online-only banks to simplistic online design companies, using technology to streamline client communications. This, he believes, will allow today's design frms to better ap- peal to the up-and-coming Millennials – a generation that often gravitates toward simplicity and ease in their busi- ness dealings, despite their passion for technology. Internet competition and online ser- vices that relate to the design industry may not be a game changer for the kitchen and bath industry, where see- ing and touching carry so much weight. But these have certainly added another dimension to the equation. As a society, we increasingly ex- pect 24/7 access to pretty much everything, from just about anywhere – and that means our online presence, and services, matter more than ever. Whether people are seeking informa- tion about your frm, a virtual tour of your showroom, a way to see what a specifc product might look like in their kitchen or the ability to ask questions in 'real time,' they expect to be able to fnd what they need from you, when they need it, and with mini- mal efort. That means design pro- fessionals not only need to maintain a strong online presence, but they need to be able to access information they want and need, 24/7. And that's true whether they are 30 or 50 or 70. Indeed, this was one of the driving reasons behind the launch of the new Kitchen & Bath Design News Web site, Whether you're looking for an extensive directory of products and product manufacturers, expert advice about marketing, research on consumer trends or simply design inspiration, the site is there to ofer you up-to-the-minute help in staying abreast of today's fast-moving trends. Because your oven may wait for you…but your clients won't. Today's 24/7 Mentality Drives Demand for Apps "As a society, we increasingly expect 24/7 access to everything, from anywhere – and that means our online presence and services matter more than ever." ® Publisher Paul DeGrandis Publisher Emeritus Eliot Sefrin Editor Janice Anne Costa Managing Editor Anita Shaw Group Editorial Director Patrick O'Toole Contributing Writers Kim Berndtson Joe Dowd Jamie Gold, CKD, CAPS Elizabeth Richards Denise Vermeulen Columnists Ellen Cheever, CMKBD, ASID, CAPS Hank Darlington Leslie Hart Bruce Kelleran, CKD, CPA Stephen Nicholls Ken Peterson, CKD Mary Jo Peterson, CKD, CBD, CAPS Sarah Reep, CMKBD, ASID, CMG, CAPS, IIDA Bryan Reiss, CMKBD Eric Schimelpfenig, AKBD Creative Director & Production Manager Tracy Hegg Graphic Designer Cathy Petersen Circulation Manager Mike Serino Reader Service Manager Jeff Heine Digital Programs Manager Tim Steingraber Operations Manager Marie Snow Copyright © 2015 by SOLA Group Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be produced in any form, including electronically, without written permission from the publisher of Kitchen & Bath Design News .

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