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Best Business Smart Phones

We often have people ask us about cell phones in general and which smart phone they should get. There are many different kinds of smart phones, and it can be difficult to keep up with which options are best for your business or personal life. However, there are essentially four main options:

iPhones for Business

First, there’s the iPhone. Since the iPhone 5 came out a few weeks ago, now is the perfect time to get an iPhone, though it may take a while for your new phone to arrive since they are all backordered. Even if you get the older iPhone 4s or iPhone 4, the phone literally has thousands of apps designed to make business easier.

As the industry standard, most smart phones are compared to the iPhone in a variety of ways. If you decide to get an iPhone, you will only have a few options, but you will probably find one to suit your needs.

Best Android Business Phones

iPhones are great, but Android phones also offer a variety of options. Some of these options include:

  • Compact sizes
  • Large screen
  • Slide-out keywords
  • Kick-stands to prop the phone up
  • Cameras
  • Large range of prices
  • And more!

What you and your business need can often be found in an Android phone, but it can be overwhelming to sift through the options. The iPhone and Android app selection is similar, though you will find some differences between the two. At this time, the Samsung Galaxy 3 is one of the best options available for Android users.

Best Blackberry Phones for Business

The third option, Blackberry, should be familiar to most businesses. Blackberry has been a reliable choice for many businesses with the solid physical keyboard and no-nonsense approach to handling phone calls and emails effortlessly and securely. Despite these advantages many people have been switching to other phones for personal and business use.

Blackberry phones are not as flashy as other phones, and they do not have the flexibility a wide selection of apps offers, but they handle essential business functions perfectly and inexpensively. There will be a new and improved Blackberry released early in 2013, but for now, the Blackberry Bold 9900 for AT&T or Blackberry Bold 9930 for Verizon is a great choice.

Windows Phones for Business

Finally, Microsoft is fighting hard to make a big presence in the smart phone market (particularly with business) with Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone 8. Though it does not have as many apps as an Android or iPhone, the Microsoft phone has many of the major ones. It also works more seamlessly with exchange servers.

At this time, Windows Phone 7 phones are available and generally inexpensive, but the newer, faster and better Windows Phone 8 phones will be available for use in the next few months.

So what is the Best Smart Phone for Your Business?

Deciding which phone to get for your business can be a difficult decision, but these are the four major options available. All of these phones will provide the same essential services:  make phone calls and managing emails. Deciding which to get may depend on a specific app you need, or it may come down to a personal preference. Either way, now is a great time to upgrade your business smart phone or personal phone.

Outlook Alternatives For Macs

Without Outlook: Apple Products working in the Enterprise Using Mail, Contacts, and Calendars in OS X 10.8

You don’t need to purchase Outlook for Mac or Entourage to use your Mac in the workplace. Since Snow Leopard’s debut, Macs have been able to add exchange accounts using their pre-installed Mail, Contacts, and Calendars Apps. In Mountain Lion, it becomes even easier to use your Mac in a Microsoft Exchange business environment.

Setting up Microsoft Exchange on a Mac Computer

To set up Microsoft exchange on a Mac computer, begin by opening up System Preferences and clicking on Mail, Contacts & Calendars.

Email Exchange on Macs

Click on Microsoft Exchange Account to bring up the box to add an Exchange account.

Microsoft Exchange on a Mac

Enter in your credentials. If Auto-discover is turned on your company’s Exchange server, your Mac will load all the required settings in the background for you. Because of how deep the integration goes in OS X, many of the built-in Apps now connect to your corporate system: You’ll be able to use the Mail app for your email.

Microsoft Exchange Integration for OS X

Your Outlook Contacts and Calendar apps tie in to your Mac contacts and calendar.

Porting Outlook Calendar to Mac Porting Outlook Contacts to Mac

As an added benefit, the new Notes and Reminders Apps also link to your Microsoft Exchange notes and tasks from your Windows Outlook.

Porting Outlook Notes to Mac Porting Outlook Reminders to Mac

If you follow these steps, you can use the included Mail, Contacts, and Calendars apps on your Mac computer as an alternative to Microsoft Outlook.

Managed IT Services in Washington, DC, Virginia and Maryland

HouseCall provides managed IT support services for the Virginia, Maryland, and DC area. We’re experts in small business and government IT support and consulting. Don’t hesitate to let us know if you need any help!

Top Apple Business Apps for iPhone & iPad

Need help with your business? There is an App for that!

Whether you are part of a Fortune 500 company or a small shop trying to get your foot in the door, Apple business apps, found through the App Store, can help.

The App Store is usually located on the Home Screen of both iPads and iPhones. The store itself is fairly simple to navigate, with menu buttons at the bottom to guide you. If you are not quite sure what you are looking for, the category tab is a great place to start. Categories range from Business and Productivity to Music, Games and everything in-between.

Apple Productivity Apps

Apple business apps such as Pages, Keynote and Numbers allow you to have a complete desktop editing software suite in the palm of your hand. And fret not if you are a PC user—Pages, Keynote and Numbers will all save files to their Microsoft Office suite equivalent.

If you’re in a meeting, there are a slew of business apps for iPhone and iPad to help you remember and prioritize meeting notes. Evernote allows you to type meeting notes into separate notebooks right in the app. If the meeting organizer allows, you can also run the Dragon Dictation app and have it do the typing for you.

Once your meeting is over and you have multiple projects due at various times, the Wunderlist app will allow you to keep track, prioritize and  set reminders for important tasks.

Remote Access App

Another often overlooked app is iTap RDP. This app is especially useful if you have an iPad. iTap RDP allows you to remotely connect to your PC and function as you would if you were sitting in front of it (very handy on the commute in if that presentation due in 20 minutes is saved to your desktop!).

Mobile Payment Processing App

If you are a small shop, there are also business apps for you. If your company has a Facebook Page, Facebook Pages Manager lets you change, edit and interact with your page right from your iOS device. The Square Card Reader allows your business to have a selling platform anywhere. From the neighborhood lemonade stand, to brick and mortar stores and beyond, Square Card Reader requires no contracts or monthly fees and has one simple rate of 2.75 percent per transaction. Square Card Reader will even allow you to send receipts via email or text message.

Built-In Apple Business Apps

With all these third party apps, it is very easy to overlook the built-in apps such as Reminders, Voice Memos, Notes and Stocks. While sometimes simpler than their paid brethren, they are no less useful. We just scratched the surface of apps here today. The best way to find apps is to just venture to the App Store and explore!

As an Apple support provider, we at Solvere One find these apps to be among the best business apps for iPhone and iPad that we work with and would recommend to any business owner. If you have questions regarding these or other Apple business apps, we provide comprehensive Apple Business IT Support for Macs, iPhones and iPads. Contact us today for setup, configuration, training and more!

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