Interview with TechToolBelt founder Jeremy Brimer

What is TechToolBelt?

Jeremy: TechToolBelt is a technology company focused on the construction & contracting industry. Much of this industry’s software and technology is very dated or complicated to figure out. We are creating updated and easier to use tools that will make their jobs easier.

What is your mission?

Jeremy: Starting off as a small contractor myself, I always saw the advantage of using different software and technology to increase efficiency and production. However, those things weren’t always available to a small contractor like me because of the expensive costs associated with software and technology. Our mission is to make up to date, efficient, and easy to use software available for everyone, small and large contractors alike.

Why target the construction industry? What’s your background?

Jeremy: Ever since I was a kid, I was enthralled with building things. First it was blocks, then Lego’s, then tree houses, and finally houses. I started working in construction as a teenager and even worked on a lot of volunteer building projects and relief effort both in the U.S.A. and other countries. For many years, I owned and operated my own general contracting business. I have always loved most aspects of construction and I want to make a real difference for this industry. I want to use my background and my knowledge to help others expand their business.

All your products are focused on roofing, why?

Jeremy: We decided to focus our first few products on the roofing section of the construction industry because, first, it was a large part of what I did when I was a contractor. I’ve not only been the one on the roof, removing and installing roofing materials, but I’ve also run multiple crews, done the sales, scheduling, and oversight of roofing projects from start to finish. Another reason, the roofing industry is a large market in itself and it presents challenges in sales, estimating, materials ordering, and coordination. Because of these challenges, sometimes it can take hours or days to write up a simple estimate with the risk of submitting a bid that is too low or too high.

How do you compare to your competition?

Jeremy: It’s no secret we have a few different forms of competition out there, whether it’s a third party reporting company or another software company. But, none of them can match us on our ease of use and cost. We have the easiest mobile software to use and third party reporting companies simply can’t compete with our cost.

Did you have investors? Are you looking for investors?

Jeremy: Yes, most companies need seed money to be able to make their dream a reality, and in our case, both myself and a major investing member invested a lot of money in order to create this concept. As far as further investments go, I’m not opposed to the thought of it, when going through some different stages of growth, capital can be key to growth.

Anything you can tell us about your future plans?

Jeremy: We have some radical changes we are going to make in the near future. We constantly are trying to innovate and change our industry and I feel like the changes to our products we are about to make will make a big difference. We also have a new enterprise option we are developing right now to cater our products to our larger customer.

You can learn more about TechToolBelt and their apps at http://techtoolbelt.com

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The Best Tough Camera Gets Better

What can survive 50 feet underwater, 220 pounds of crushing pressure, 7 foot drops, and 14° F? Not just any camera, that’s what Olympus Stylus Tough TG-4. The previous camera in the Tough series was among the best of the waterproof, rugged, point-and-shoot category of cameras. The new TG-4 ups the game with a bunch of improvements, including RAW shooting, WiFi and GPS built-in, Compass, 10 frame burst mode, and more. With the WiFi you can quickly transfer your photos directly to your smartphone. This would be a great addition to your toolbox for taking some great before and after shots without worrying about messing up your camera. All this for under $400.

Check out the Phoblographer’s Preview Article for more details.

The Most Advanced Water Hose Ever

The RoboReel Water Hose is the absolute coolest water hose I’ve ever seen. It’s apparently so great and in such demand the company can’t currently keep up with demand, even at the hefty price of $700.

So, what makes this water hose so great? It’s not just a water hose, it’s more of a “hosebot” [patent pending]. The core of this waterproof sphere houses a micro computer for  managing everything the unit does. A smart reel system ensures the hose never whips back too fast and stops if interrupted to protect it from damage. Not only does the brain of this unit help with reeling in the hose, it helps reeling it out. This helpful little guy has a smart, forward assist that detects your movement and rolls out the hose as you pull.

The top of the unit spins a complete 360 degrees and the hose itself extends either 100 or 150 feet depending on the model you choose. The brain can be operated from either the top of the green core, or from the remote built into the nozzle. You can even setup a remote timer feature to auto-shutoff or schedule on/off for up to a month in advance. The entire system is powered with removable 12 volt batteries, similar to many cordless power tools.

[Insert obligatory robot overlord joke here]