Monthly Archives: June 2016

Business Features

MacOS Sierra, the latest version of Apple’s desktop operating system, packs new features to help you get things done. The updated platform includes new security features, better file management and the introduction of Siri — Apple’s virtual assistant app, previously available only on iPhones and iPads — to the desktop.

Siri has been a boon to mobile workers for years on the iPhone and iPad, but it’s only with the release of MacOS Sierra that the virtual assistant app is coming to the desktop. Siri can be launched manually by clicking an icon located on the top-right corner of the screen, or summoned with a voice command. From there, the app can streamline all sorts of tasks, from scheduling meetings to setting reminders. It can even sift through your documents and email to find exactly what you need at any given time.

Last year, Apple introduced a slew of features to help iPhones and iPads work seamlessly with Macs. This year, the company is adding to its so-called Continuity features. First up is the ability to view and access all of your desktop files and folders on your iPhone. The files are automatically synced across your devices with the help of iCloud.

Then, there’s Universal Clipboard, a new tool that will let you easily copy text, photos and more from an iPhone or iPad to your Mac. That will help workers seamlessly transition between their desktop and mobile devices without missing a beat.

 

Auto Unlock

Apple says the new Auto Unlock feature will make Macs more secure for iPhone or Apple Watch owners. Auto Unlock allows you to pair your Mac desktop or laptop with your mobile device via Bluetooth. After that, your computer will unlock itself whenever it detects the phone or watch is nearby. Workers tired of fussing with passwords will be pleased.

 

Optimized storage

Using your MacBook for work can fill up your hard drive quickly. A new feature, dubbed optimized storage, will automatically free up space on your computer by transferring files to the cloud when they haven’t been used in a while. It will also automatically clear out junk files, like web caches and inactive downloads.

How to find the best of photo editing apps

Photo editing apps are a must for businesses that use smartphones or tablets to take photos.

Smartphone and tablet cameras are better than ever, turning Average Joes into instant professional photographers. Still, smartphone and tablet snapshots are far from perfect. Photos can come out looking flat, dull or otherwise lifeless. Whether you share photos on social media or use them on your website or online store, a quick editing session with a photo editing app can make a world of difference in attracting customers with beautiful works of art.

To help you wade through the sea of photo editing apps available at app stores, here are some of the best for iOS and Android.

1. TouchRetouch

Sometimes, your shot is picture perfect — except for that one little blemish, glare or unwanted object. If you simply need to touch-up a photo, check out TouchRetouch.

TouchRetouch lets you quickly and easily remove all sorts of elements from a photo, such as shadows, lights, people, buildings, wires, spots in the sky, backgrounds and more. All you have to do is highlight areas you want eliminated by tracing it with your finger, and then tap Start. TouchRetouch does all the hard work for you.

The app also lets you perfect faces by retouching imperfections, evening out skin tones and smoothing the skin’s surface. And unlike many retouching apps that distort images post-edit, TouchRetouch maintains the quality of your photos so it’s not obvious that they have been edited.

Other features include a clone stamp tool to fill in any gaps, match backgrounds or duplicate elements, as well as unlimited undo and redo, 1:1 view and social media sharing via Facebook, Twitter, Picasa and Flickr. In-app video tutorials are also available to help you use and get the most out of the app.

2. Snapseed

Ask any Instagram power user or iPhone photographer and Snapseed is likely on the top of their list. Snapseed, by Google, is a free iOS and Android app that offers a slew of professional-level photo editing features.

To polish photos, the Auto Correct feature enhances colors, exposure and contrast in a single tap. The Tune Image feature tweaks brightness, ambience, highlights, shadows, saturation and other effects, and the Selective Adjust feature also lets you highlight and focus specific areas. Other features include frames, texture and tone adjustment, and sharing via email, Google+ and more.

Another great feature is the Brush tool, which lets you selectively edit different parts of a photo, for instance, manually adjust the saturation or exposure of a single object in a frame and not the entire photo.

The app also comes with several filters and effects to give your photos a unique look and feel. This includes classic Black & White, Vintage, Drama, Grunge and Retrolux, which adds scratches, film styles and other embellishments to give your photos a retro vibe.

Get Snapseed from the Apple App Store and Google Play.

3. VSCO

VSCO is another favorite photo editing app amongst for iPhone photographers. VSCO — which stands for Visual Supply Company — is an all-in-one camera and photo editing app.

VSCO’s main draw are its wide range of filters. The app lets you adjust the strength of each filter manually by using a slider, giving you full control over its intensity. In addition to filters, you can further edit photos by fine tuning its exposure, contrast, sharpness, saturation, highlights, tin, temperature and fade.

In addition to editing tools, VSCO comes with a neat Sync & Edit feature that syncs your workflow across devices. For instance, you can take a photo and start editing it on your iPhone, and then finish your work on your iPad. VSCO also maintains the quality of your images by keeping high-resolution versions of your photos even after many rounds of editing on different devices.

VSCO also offers a robust organization system using its Photo Library. There you have the choice of displaying photos you’ve taken using the VSCO camera, photos you’ve edited and your favorite photos, as well as add existing photos from your phone’s native photo gallery.

Manage Your Business Contacts

Don’t settle for your iPhone’s stock address book. Other apps offer deeper functionality to help you manage and keep track of your business contacts. FullContact is our favorite, adding extra features like the ability to consolidate your contacts from various sources across the Web, including Google contacts, Microsoft Exchange and Office 365 accounts, and even social media profiles. That way you can easily get in touch with the right person without rifling through multiple sources. Speaking of social media, FullContact can connect to platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, so you can see what your contacts have been up to without leaving the app.

If you’ve ever had trouble remembering who’s who in your address book, Connect Contact Manager is a pretty good solution. The core functionality of this iPhone apps is the ability to sort your contacts into customizable categories. For example, you might separate clients from vendors, making your contacts list much easier to browse at a glance. Adding or removing a contact can be done with a couple of quick taps, and you can move contacts from one list to another with a swipe.

Swapping business cards is a time-tested way to introduce yourself to a new business contact — but in the age of the smartphone, it’s a little old fashioned. Paper cards are easy to lose, and inputting all that contact information into your phone’s address book by hand is tedious. With apps like CamCard for iOS, turning a paper card into a digital contact is easy. Just point your iPhone camera at a business card, and snap a photo. The app’s text-recognition software will even pull out the key details – including their name, phone number, email, business name and more – and update your address book automatically.

Tools for Small Business

unduhan-12From in-person meetings to online videoconferencing, technology has made communicating with employees and clients easier and more affordable than ever. Whether you connect using a software, mobile app or social media, here are 12 collaboration tools to consider for your small business.

1. BlueJeans

Everyone has their preferred way of attending online meetings. BlueJeans cloud-based video communications gives attendees the flexibility of joining videoconferences using a Web browser, desktop app or mobile phone, all while making meetings more productive with a wide range of collaboration features that are available across platforms. This includes the ability to host meetings in conference rooms and town halls, share screens and record meetings. BlueJeans also makes it easy to combine workflows, such as scheduling meetings using Outlook, chat using Skype and other integrations with popular business apps and services. Users who don’t have a video- or audio-capable devices can also phone in to join meetings. BlueJeans starts at $9.95 per meeting host per month.

2. Do

Meetings aren’t just for discussing goals and ideas. Do offers an all-in-one tool that aims to help businesses hold more productive meetings by making sure things are getting done. This collaboration tool helps users create agendas, keep notes, track progress and follow up on tasks to increase productivity. Do is also searchable, making it easy to find meeting items and improve accountability amongst teams and employees. The platform also comes with an Insights feature, which lets businesses track how much time and money are being spent on meetings to make them more efficient. Do costs $10 per month per user.

3. Google Hangouts

Whether you need to make voice calls or video calls, or simply chat and send multimedia messages, Google Hangouts makes all types of group collaboration super easy — regardless of your team members’ locations and devices. From desktops to Android and iOS mobile devices, Hangouts lets you connect with up to 10 people from all over the world. You can make voice calls straight from your computer (calls to the US and Canada are free), as well as hold videoconferences and even live-stream meetings and events. The service also lets you keep a history of your Hangouts, so you can always go back to old conversations for reference. Google Hangouts is free. Paid subscriptions are also available to increase the number of people you can connect to in a single session.

4. OfficeSuite

Are your employees always on the go? Broadview Networks’ OfficeSuite is a cloud-based communications system that’s fully accessible anytime, anywhere. In addition to audio, Web and video conferencing, OfficeSuite also offers unlimited nationwide calling, toll-free phone service, digital faxing and the following mobility features: Mobile Twinning, which makes all incoming calls ring your desk and mobile phone simultaneously; Hot Desking to enable incoming and outgoing calls from any phone; and Virtual Voicemail to receive notifications and messages from any phone, online or by email. Contact Broadview Networks for pricing information.

5. GoToMeeting

If you need a basic, easy-to-use Web-conferencing solution, Citrix’s free GoToMeeting can get you started immediately. Just use its one-click meeting feature to quickly schedule meetings straight from Outlook or Google Calendar. In addition to HD videoconferecing, GoToMeeting also comes with dozens of useful tools to help your meetings be more productive and interactive. This includes screen sharing, Web audio, a dial-in conference line, drawing tools and the ability to record meetings. GoToMeeting starts at $24 per month for up to five people. If you need more participants and features, check out the Pro plan ($39 per month) for 25 attendees and the Plus plan ($49 per month) plans for up to 100 attendees. A free 30-day trial is also available.

Application for note

You can’t remember everything. Whether you’re on a business call or planning your workday, sometimes you just have to jot down a few notes. But there’s no need to reach for the nearest notepad. With the right apps, your smartphone or tablet can become a note-taking machine. Digital notes have big advantages over their pen-and-paper counterparts. You won’t lose them, since they’re stored on your mobile device. Best of all, digital notes are searchable, so you can say goodbye to rifling through huge stacks of paper in search of that one important note.

If you’re on and iPhone or iPad, Apple’s stock Notes app might be all you need. The app — which comes pre-loaded on all iOS devices — doesn’t have quite as many features as some of the third-party options on this list, but it’s still pretty powerful. I particularly like the ability to create checklists and to-do lists, then tick off items with one tap. You also get powerful formatting options, with the ability to add a title, heading or bulleted list to your notes. Adding an attachment — including photos and video — is also simple. Best of all, Notes integrates with Siri automatically, so you can save notes using voice commands. Evernote (Free) – iOS, Android, Windows Phone Evernote (available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone) is a robust note-taking app that lets you dictate or manually enter notes, snap photos, create to-do-lists and more. The app features text identification, which can recognize and index printed — and even handwritten — text. That means you can search for specific words, whether they’re in a PDF, a typed memo or a photographed note scrawled on a scrap of paper. Evernote is available for a wide range of platforms, including iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Mac and PC, so you can access your notes on any machine and stay organized. ColorNote (Free) – Android ColorNote (available for Android) is a no-nonsense notes app for users who don’t want to fiddle with tons of features. The app’s trademark feature is the ability to quickly and easily organize notes by color-coding them. That makes notes both easy to sort, and to view at a glance. Other key features include the ability to sync with your calendar, and to set custom task reminders. ColorNote also has a nice widget, so you can view your notes from your phone’s home screen.

OneNote (Free) – iOS, Android, Windows Phone For serious business users, the mobile version of Microsoft’s OneNote (available for iOS, Android and Windows Phone) has one big advantage over competing apps: full integration with Microsoft Office. That’s because OneNote automatically syncs with Microsoft’s OneNote cloud-storage platform, so your notes are accessible from anywhere, on any Internet-connected device. When you want to recall a note, the app’s search functionality can help you find it. And Android users can take advantage of the OneNote widget to take notes right on their phone or tablet’s home screen without opening the app. Simplenote (Free) – iOS, Android Sometimes, extra features just get in the way. The aptly-named Simplenote (available for iOS and Android) is a no-frills note-taking app lets you jot down ideas from distractions. It excludes most of the frills you’ll find in apps like Evernote and OneNote, but the tradeoff is that it’s a lot easier to use. You can quickly create new notes, then add bullet points. Later, you can search through your notes with keywords. I also like Simplenote’s history feature, which makes it easy to restore any note that you accidentally deleted. Notability ($2.99) – iOS Unlike other popular alternatives, Notability (available for iOS) isn’t free. But the app features some premium features that might make it worthwhile. In terms of note-taking functionality, the app covers all the basics, letting you type out notes, sketch ideas and incorporate photos and video.

Additionally, it lets you annotate documents and PDFs, then share them with others. One premium feature that really stands out is the app’s ability to sync written notes with an audio recording; when you’re reviewing your notes, tap a word or picture to hear what was said at that moment. Penultimate (Free) – iPad Penultimate (available for iOS) is an iPad-exclusive note-taking app for the stylus devotee.  As its name implies, the app’s functionality is centered around pen input so you can scribble down notes and draw diagrams on the fly. You can use your finger or a capacitive stylus to take notes, and the app features effective palm rejection so you won’t make any unwanted marks. Your notes can be organized by topic, project or category, and the built-in search functionality can recognize and locate printed words. Penultimate is also integrated with Evernote, so you can easily sync your written notes with your entire Evernote library.