Boasting sleek, ergonomic designs, today's mobile devices are truly a sight to behold. However, these attractive gadgets possess the bulk of their value under the hood. Thanks to the vast ecosystem of applications they support, smartphones and tablets are arming business users with capabilities that enable them to work from virtually anywhere.
Got a big business trip coming up? Don't hit the road without these tips designed to help you get the most from your apps on the go.
Pack Trip-Friendly Apps
Maximizing the efficiency of app usage on the road starts with bringing the right applications along to begin with. You can set yourself up for smooth sailings by squaring away the following areas:
Trip planning. If you're taking a serious business exploration, a good trip planner can be your best friend. These type of apps will help you figure where to make hotel accommodations, where to eat, and other fine details of the trip. TripAdvisor and TripIt are two popular cross-platform tools that come in highly recommended as great planning companions.
Transportation. While trip planners help you map the when and where, transportation apps help you determine the how – as in how you're going to get from point A to point B. When you're traveling for business purposes, finding yourself lost in unfamiliar territory is the last thing you want to do. Luckily, there are apps from individual airlines that can get you to your main destination, and apps like TaxiMagic that will come in handy when you land and need to get around town.
Communication. Sure, you've got your iPhone or Android device on board, but we all know that mobile communications stem far beyond the traditional phone call, text, or even email. With the right mobile technology, you can extend your ability to efficiently communicate by great lengths. Skype is an awesome application loaded with features that allow you to make cheap international voice calls, video calls, and group chat sessions with multiple parties all over your internet connection.
Productivity. With the aforementioned areas taken care of, all you need now is tools that empower you to actually get down to business. The basic necessity for almost all professionals is the ability to easily access files. Apps like DropBox give you seamless access to your files from the cloud, while EverNote is among the useful mobile tools that help you stay organized and share valuable content with team members on the go.
Use Data WiselyWandera's Mobile Data Optimization service, which according to the firm, cuts usage by up to 60%. This service is particularly useful for organizations that distribute devices to employees and want to better manage company wide data usage.
It may be safe to say that from a business perspective at least, technology can be both a blessing and burden. With the whole World Wide Web at your fingertips, you may find yourself tempted to venture over to YouTube, Facebook or your favorite sports site when you're supposed to be working. Staying focused is critical in the mobile work environment and if you've kept up with the theme, you've probably guessed that there is indeed an app for that. Focus Time is among the growing list of apps that help you concentrate on the task at hand with features that block calls and even other apps for predetermined intervals so you don't cave in to temptation.
It's nice to know that solutions exist for wandering business travelers that are easily distracted by the technology in the palm of their hand. The focus-friendly apps help, but if you want results, then you must adopt a bit of self-discipline. More than likely, you'll be traveling with little to no supervision, so establish some reasonable guidelines and boundaries and work within them. Limiting device usage to certain intervals during work time or simply powering your gadgets down as you work will better assure that you remain productive while on the go.
Thanks to the wonderful world of apps, working during traveling has become a common practice for professionals across multiple fields. Of course there are challenges, but with the right tools, sound decisions and a splash of discipline to boot, you can make sure you enjoy all the benefits mobile technology has to offer.
Aidan Hijleh is an SEO specialist, marketing expert and blogger for Benchmark Email. An accomplished writer and former nonprofit organization liaison, he works with numerous top-tier blogs to deliver valuable intel to the small business owner. Get more from Aidan on Twitter and Google+.