From accountants to architects, here are some of the top apps that we have been recommending to customers.
One of the biggest benefits of Apple’s iPad, iPhone and iPod touch is versatility. Apps allow you to transform an iOS device into just about anything you can imagine on a touch screen, and the Apple App Store already has a library of more than 520,000 approved apps – many of which are free. You can develop your own bespoke content that’s tailored specifically to your business’s needs but, apart from spirit levels and Angry Birds, what does the App Store have to offer?
For word processing: Pages
Pages (£6.99) from Apple is just one of a number of apps out there available for the iPad and iPhone that deal with word processing. Where this has the edge, though, is in its compatibility with Microsoft Word – it can import and export both iWork and Office for Mac files, as well as PDFs. It’s also far more flexible than its competitors, allowing you to import photos into text with minimal lag.
For spreadsheets: Numbers
Download Numbers from the App Store here.Numbers (£6.99) from Apple is a spreadsheet tool that includes over 250 different functions. It’s completely compatible with Excel files (you can import and export the .xls file type), but bear in mind it doesn’t include pivot tables, sparklines and Macros – you’ll need to run Microsoft Office via VPN and remote desktop protocol for those.
For presentations: Keynote
mobilEcho (Get in touch for pricing) from GroupLogic has been a game changer in that IT can now give iPad users secure and managed access (via AD authentication) to files that are stored on corporate file servers. Basically, it lets iPad users access files in the same way as they would on their laptop.
Dropbox (Free) by Dropbox is free but includes a storage limit, and lets you store any file type in cloud storage so you can access it on another device – you can save a document on an iPad and then carry on working on it on your desktop when you’re back in the office, without having to transfer over the latest version.
activEcho (Get in touch for pricing) from GroupLogic is the corporate equivalent of Dropbox, and works in the same way by giving you anytime, anywhere access to files stored in the cloud (either public or private). The one big difference: this improves security and helps you meet compliance requirements. Again, the client app is free but the infrastructure behind that isn’t.
For sketching and editing CAD files: AutoCAD WS
AutoCAD WS (Free) is purely aimed at anyone who works with 2D and 3D DWG, DWF and DXF files. It lets you view, edit and share drawings, and you can even work on designs offline or use the built-in design collaboration tools to review and approve colleagues’ work.
For retail and sales reports: Roambi Analytics Visualizer and Roambi Flow Viewer
Roambi Analytics Visualizer and Roambi Flow Viewer are both business intelligence apps that bring together complex data and engaging design. Roambi Analytics transforms existing business reports into stunning visual displays, while the Flow Viewer lets you turn business information (including Salesforce data) and multimedia content into a report for presenting to clients and colleagues. While both apps are free to download, for more comprehensive reporting in Analytics Visualizer, a subscription is required.
For monitoring and communicating leads: ForcePad and Salesforce Chatter
ForcePad (Free) by Salesforce Labs was formerly known as Salesforce for iPad, and gives you access to every Salesforce feature on the move. You can create, edit, clone and delete records in an Salesforce environment, view all your apps and visualforce/web/custom tabs, and post links to Chatter. This is great if you want to check leads or opportunities you’ve been assigned to.
Salesforce Chatter (Free) by salesforce.com is a great way to turn your business into a social enterprise, giving employees the chance to communicate what they are working on and post photos.
For document management: GoodReader for iPad
GoodReader for iPad (£2.99) by Good.i.Ware is perfect for viewing lots of file formats, including PDFs and Microsoft Office files. Where this excels is in its flexibility and speed; you can load up PDFs of 100MB or more incredibly fast or even choose to load them without images, then use the annotation tools to look at other people’s comments GoodReader also uses a familiar file storage interface, and can sync with the likes of Dropbox and other remote servers.
For notetaking: Evernote
Evernote (Free) by Evernote is more than just notetaking, if I’m being honest; you can take notes, capture photos, important PDFs, make voice recordings and more. Then save them all in the cloud in project folders. It’s the search function that really stands out, though, because Evernote will scan your saved images and PDFs as well as text documents for instances of your word or phrase.
For more of our must-have apps, keep en eye on our blog for our app of the week! Or to find out about creating and distributing apps within your business, call us on 03332 409 219 or email B2B@Jigsaw24.com.