Mobile Technology

Discussion in 'Functional Gear & Equipment' started by Hanzo, Jul 17, 2015.

  1. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    Yeah, I am a road warrior. I do my work from wherever. Today, it was in a restaurant over a short and quiet lunch alone.

    Obviously, a phone. I have been an Apple convert from a number of years ago. So iPhone it is. Not the latest, but I am satisfied with what I have. (great for taking food pictures)

    Also, a tablet. In my case, an iPad. Also not the latest, but I will be ready to upgrade soon. Mine is old and getting finicky. But still very useful with the right app. The phone and tablet and computer talk to each otters so that makes things simpler and easier for me.

    The apps make it though. First app, and service, is Ring Central. I use it for my main business phone line as well as my fax line. It costs less than having land lines for those services and it infinitely more usable. The voicemail is really robust and I get individual smart voice mails like on my iPhone. The VOIP is not the greatest as there can be lags. But I do not use VOIP. Everything that goes to my main number goes to voicemail. It is a practice I started doing over 20 years ago. That way, I control when I go on the phone. After I check messages, I can call back or schedule whatever needs to be done. In many cases, a return call is not necessary. But when it is, using cell phone minutes is no problem as they are unlimited.

    The other (part of the same service, but costs more) service I really like is the Ring Central Fax. I can fax from any device from anywhere I have internet. My incoming faxes come in like emails and I also get a text alert (also unlimited) letting me know of fax statuses. Sending faxes is as easy as sending an email. Or even easier with the iOS app.

    But you have to have something to send. I type my cover sheet with Pages. I can also use Word since they both reside on my iPad. But I try to stay native as much as possible. So before my food arrives, I complete my fax cover.

    Then I open it in PDF Expert. A great app. I also have a PDF document that I need to send in there. I could easily send the documents separately with Ring Central Fax, but PDF Expert allows me to merge as many PDFs as I want into one. So my fax cover and PDF become one document. Then I seamlessly open the file in the Ring Central app. Having one document makes saving the file more intuitive for me.

    From there I just fax it out. The 21 page document left my iPad in under a minute. And one of my to do's was done with no wasted time. Prep the next thing to do while waiting for the check and I am outta there.

    Oh, by the way, Notability is an awesome note taking app. But I have a hard time getting away from paper. And Evernote is fantastic as well for storing all kinds of stuff.

    All of those apps are usable on my phone and tablet. And some are also on my computer, a Macbook Air.

    I do have a PC, but it stays off most of the time. It gets turned on to do one thing only, then get shut down again.

    So what mobile tech do you guys and gals use to give you an advantage or to make you more productive. Or at least to make things easier and/or more fun for yourselves? I know there are a lot of business folks and business owners on the forum. And I look forward to picking your brains. Even if your mobile tech is a knife and a .45, please do tell.
    Tully Mars and Yard Dart like this.
  2. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    I use the Apple I-phone for a work cell but do not like it that much..... (sorry for all you Apple fans).... I much prefer my HTC Android for use in mobile applications!!! I think it is coming down to the ol Ford vs Chevy when it comes to mobile devices. It really depends on what you are used to and what makes your life easier. I am on the road going between home, the office and various job sites probably 12 hours a day and my phone is going off 24-7. I have crews working 3 shifts and clients in time zones all the way to mobile use of email, maps, interweb and such is critical in my role to stay on top of business. I use a HP laptop with a Verizon wireless stick or tie into my cell for a hotspot, depending on where I am at and what is available. I can be in the metro area or up in the mountains within 45 minutes.... and connectivity issues are constant due to that range of areas operated in.

    Many times, I will pull off to the side of the road or sit in a parking lot working out a response to a hot email or knocking out a cost for a client on the fly... it is the nature of the beast in today's construction industry, that everything needs to happen right now, or you have a delay in work, an unhappy client, or the job may go to your competition due to a slow bid response.

    We have a regular fax machine at the office that some clients still send bid request to.... not sure how to use it as it has been years since I have touched it. ;) I scan documents 99% of the time and forward with email....

    I text continually with my foreman on the minutia of the day....much easier to send short notes and respond when available vs playing voicemail phone tag. A guy is not going to answer the phone when he is digging around in an electrical panel... bad enough when the phone vibrates in the pocket while doing so..... :eek:

    All technology aside, in my business, the art of the spoken word face to face and a handshake are still the best for client interaction and to maintain relationships. Right now, half our office is out doing Friday drop ins with various customers and general contractors to just say hi and do business development. Nothing can replace the FTF interaction!!! We are seeing the 20 to 30 somethings come into the industry with construction mgt. degree's.... but most have communication issues. They would rather email or text someone, than pick up the phone or go visit a person to discuss something. It is obvious to watch them and see the weakness, the hesitation of "like you mean I have to talk to them"?!! Yes, email has brought up efficiency in business, but nothing replaces that physical interaction with business development and working relations with folks IMO. (rant off) :)
    Ganado, Thmstr, Tully Mars and 2 others like this.
  3. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    I agree about doing business face to face. For my clients on the mainland and overseas, I fly over to see them regularly on my own dime, even when not anticipating business. Builds great goodwill and creates happy clients and future business.
    Ganado, Yard Dart and Tully Mars like this.
  4. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    I've been an Apple guy for as long as the iphone has been out. Ipod, Pad, touch all that stuff.
    But I gotta tell ya no more. After they downloaded a music CD onto my phone WO my knowledge or consent F'em. That made me see red big time. AND it was a huge PITA to remove. Sass is a droid freak and I'm following her lead. I've got to admit, a lot of the features are more user friendly than the Apple stuff as well.
    Right, wrong or whatever, if you want to do business nowadays you have to be wireless. We have a fax here, and I have it plugged into the landline. Not for faxes, but to let it handle the 1 800 and other calls I don't wish to answer. A few times of getting that frigg'in noise after 5 rings and we don't get many call backs;) Everyone I used to deal with wether it was tool pushers or accounts payable it was "scan a copy and send it to me" or "I'm sending you a pic of what broke.."

    But like YD said, you GOTTA back all that up with FTF. I can't tell you how much work I've gotten over the years just by following up a job with a personal thank you and a couple dozen donuts for the crew/office.
  5. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    It does-so when are you gonna come down here with some of that good will-and a bunch of that island food you keep posting pictures of??!!:D
    Ganado, Yard Dart and Hanzo like this.
  6. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    I don't know where you live, @Tully Mars... I always come bringing good will and aloha. Food is harder to travel with.
    Ganado and Tully Mars like this.
  7. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    Aloha Is always welcome in Seattle ;)
    Ganado, Tully Mars and Hanzo like this.
  8. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    I DO have clients in Washington...
    Yard Dart and Ganado like this.
  9. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    @Hanzo Call me with a fresh food list when you hit the Alabama line and I'll have everything waiting for you to start cooking. While yer busy in the kitchen I'll have @Sassenach unpack yer bags :lol:
    kellory, Ganado and Hanzo like this.
  10. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    Never been to Alabama, @Tully Mars.
  11. Tully Mars

    Tully Mars Metal weldin' monkey

    We even have beaches with white sand..;)
    Hanzo and Ganado like this.
  12. Yard Dart

    Yard Dart Vigilant Monkey Moderator

    Suck up..... ;)
    Sassenach, Tully Mars and Hanzo like this.
  13. hank2222

    hank2222 Monkey+++

    I'm a techno freak when it comes down to it .i use my iPad as my main source of Internet veiwing device .here at the end of the month I'm going to a iPhone 6 plus to be completely so not to tried to a laptop or other device .it one device for me now and nothing else

    Also I have there is a simple reason for me to go to one device .i do not need anything else now .
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2015
    Hanzo likes this.
  14. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    For me & AlaskaChick, it has always been... Early adoption of technology... We started our Mobile Devices, with iPods, then iTouches, then an iPhone for her, and an iPad2 for Me. While in Africa, her laptop died, so an iPad3 with Retina Screen, for her... We have multiple Laptops, and Desktops, for each of us, here at the Cabin, just like we have at lease TWO, of everything else , that is important to our living situation.
    We got our first Mac (128K ) as a PreProduction, Prototype, Beta Unit, and the same with our First MacSE30. Still have the Modified 128K over in the WinterShop on the shelf. It now has 512K, and a SCSI Port, and for years sat on the Network (AppleTalk/LocalTalk/EtherTalk) as a Legacy Game Machine, for the GrandKids.
    Hanzo and hank2222 like this.
  15. Sassenach

    Sassenach Deo Vindice

    I prefer Android tech over i-stuff; I just feel they're more user-friendly and there's more variety, even with simple things like personalizing your stuff. I am looking into the VoIP stuff, trying to familiarize myself with it, pros and cons, that sort of thing. Right now, Polaris Office is meeting my needs for documents on my devices, but at the end of the day, I guess I'm just an old dog. I like having a fax machine on the desk, scanning stuff, and emailing from my PC.

    By the way, I don't unpack bags. [nono]
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 26, 2015
  16. Hanzo

    Hanzo Monkey+++

    Not even goodie bags?
    Ganado and Tully Mars like this.
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