All posts in: Mobile Applications
KeepFeature2

Google who? It’s very likely this is the first time you hear about Google Keep. As many of Google’s apps and services, unless you go deep in Google’s portfolio page (which is hidden beneath a few layers itself), it can easily go unnoticed. The purpose of the app is to “Keep” notes, as simple as that. Even though there are dozens of apps out there built for that same purpose, personally, I believe that Google Keep does it like no other. Let me explain myself.

Many of these apps designed for taking notes at some point evolve into something more complex. They become a kind of text editor app, with so many options and features that makes taking notes a task far more complicated than it should be.

Google “Keep”, on the other hand, is a light, simple, and easy to use “notes” app. It does the job without all the gimmicks.

Screenshot_2016-01-12-12-13-04

Google keep sample screen.

 

The following is my Google Keep review:

WHO IS IT FOR?
Google Keep, in my opinion, is intended for someone who needs to take quick notes on the go. Small pieces of information that you’ll use later. It could be an address, a short shopping list, some instructions, etc. I often find myself using it also to create checklists for recurrent tasks. For example a checklist of things to include on a blog post, a checklist of things that I can’t forget before going on a trip, or a checklist of things to do at work, etc.

WHY THIS APP
Like I said, there are several options for note taking apps out there, but one of the things that separates this one from the pack is its simplicity. When you want to write down a quick note, you really don’t care about the font type, color, size, or any of those type of features. You just want to write it down as fast as possible and have it a few swipes away when you need that info again. That’s where Google Keep shines over other apps.

Also the way this app displays the notes makes them very accessible to you. Instead of going through several steps of navigation, all of your notes are on the main screen at the very moment you open the app. If you want to find one note you just need to scroll/swipe down to locate it.

One of the few but powerful and extremely useful features the app has is the ability to assign a color to each note. That makes it  easy to spot categories for your notes.

Another great feature is the fact that your notes synchronize between your phone, tablet and desktop. That means your notes are always at your fingertips no matter what device you are using, and since the app is super light you can access them in no time.

The rest of the few features the app has are those you would expect from a “notes” app: attachments, tags, drawings, reminders and sharing capabilities, all packed in a simple light interface.

KEY POINTS
Simple, efficient, synchronizes through all of your devices, fast and easy to use.

Google Keep has become one of my most used apps. If you give it a try, it might surprise you.

You can download Google Keep here: Android | Apple

 

GOgistiX Mobile

As promised, we launched our suite of mobile applications called GOgistiX® Mobile at this year’s IAM annual meeting in San Diego. We chose that event for the launch because it represents one of the highlights of the year for the Moving Industry and that’s exactly  how we feel about our apps.

The path that has led us to the final release was quite entertaining and full of challenges. Being our first native apps, there was a learning curve we needed to tackle and our outstanding developers did it fast and accurately. After the first prototype was completed and we sat down with our beta testers, we realized we could do better. So we did it, we decided to start the whole project again, from scratch, zero, nada. From that point on, everything went straight forward. Our sweat paid off and now the GOgistiX® Mobile suite has 5 great apps: Survey, Estimate, Inventory, Dashboard and Repair. That is just the beginning, as I am typing, more apps are in the oven.

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GOgistiX Mobile applications for movers

Ever since the military deployed their Defense Personal Property System, we’ve been developing software for military carriers and agents.  After several years of working with moving and storage companies, we realized a need for one software system that let movers work their military, commercial, local, and GSA moves in one place.

That’s why we launched EDC-MoveStar in December 2013.  It was designed to be a comprehensive move management software, with the goal of helping our customers do everything they needed within the same platform: job booking, customer service, dispatch, warehouse, billing, HR, etc., etc.

After talking with our customers and our team, we’ve realized there is one more piece of the puzzle that has been missing.  There is one more item that needs to be checked off the list in our quest to be a one-stop shop for moving and storage software: mobile applications.

That’s why we’re launching GOgistiX Mobile, a collection of native mobile applications for the moving industry.  This is a project we’ve been working on for over a year.  It hasn’t been a secret, but we are really excited to finally be able to share our work (and the work of our beta testers) with everyone over the next few months.

The first application to launch will be our mobile app for moving estimators.  We’re putting the finishing touches on it now, and it will be ready for release soon.  Before it goes live we’ll have a webinar to show all our customers (and future customers) what to expect.  We’d love to have you join us online on Thursday, July 30 at 2:00 PM EDT.  We’ll be walking through the application and taking your questions and feedback.

Click here to register.  If you can’t join us for the webinar but are still interested, let us know at sales@edcus.com.   We’re scheduling private, online demonstrations for mid-August.

Waze in Traffic

We’ve all been stuck in traffic.  Sometimes it’s the expected rush hour queue.  Other times it seems random, when the only reasonable solution is to stick your head out the driver’s side window to catch a glimpse of whatever is causing the delay.  No matter the reason, Waze, our pick for “App of the Week”, aims to make navigating the streets (and traffic pitfalls) easier. And though it isn’t a new app, Carlos, one of our lead software developers, argues it’s the best turn-by-turn GPS application on the market.

The idea behind Waze is simple: everyone on the road contributes alerts, speeds, and other data, so that real-time traffic information is available to all the users.  According to Carlos, “that’s the best part of the app: the collaboration between drivers.”  You see a construction zone?  Lane closure?  Speed trap?  Report it quickly on the app and every other user can benefit from your experience.  And when you’re out on the road and need to know which routes to avoid, Waze will fill you in with all the crowdsourced data from other users.

iPhone Waze

Here at EDC, our staff uses Waze for:

  • Traffic jams: “You see more than traffic, and everything is in real-time,” says Carlos.  “The app also makes it very easy to find another route if necessary.”
  • Summer road closures: We’re constantly under construction in the DC Metro area; Waze gives you a heads-up and makes it easier to find the best detours.
  • Location sharing: Carlos often uses Waze to let people know where he is.  “When I am meeting up with friends, I can share my location with everyone quickly through the app.” You can also use this feature to quickly tell colleagues or customers (via the app, text, Twitter, etc.) when you’ll be arriving at your destination.
  • Pothole alerts: This blogger has seen, reported, and avoided potholes that would swallow a straight truck.
  • Cheaper gas: Users can alert other drivers to gas prices in the area.  Waze provides a clear list with pricing and directions.

I should also mention that although EDC staff are safe, law-abiding drivers, we’ve heard it also provides drivers with alerts for speed cameras, red-light cameras, and police activity.

Android Waze

Waze’s founders first launched the app back in 2008.  Since then it has grown considerably, now being used in over 50 countries worldwide.  In 2013 it was purchased by Google.  If you are a Google Maps user, you may notice the occasional Waze data within your navigation screen.  But if you want to provide reports, or view information about construction, road closures, or police/speed cameras, you’ll have to use Waze.  It’s free and currently available for: Apple iOS, Android, Windows Mobile, and Blackberry 10.

This post is part of a series that features our staff’s favorite mobile apps. Want to see how estimators can use Waze in conjunction with EDC’s new estimating application?  Sign up for launch updates at www.EDCUS.com/mobile and we’ll keep you in the loop. 


Lead image via PicJumbo.  Screen images and logo via Waze.  

  • Moving and Storage company content on Flipboard application

How do you stay up-to-date on the news of the day?  Newspapers? Twitter? Cable news? (shudder) Gerardo, our VP of Software Development, encourages everybody to try Flipboard, a news and social aggregator he uses daily to stay in the loop.

Flipboard was launched about 5 years ago by Apple alum Evan Doll.  It’s simple to use, and it seamlessly merges a magazine feel with your mobile device.  After you download the app (available on iOS, Android, and Windows), you’ll choose from a seemingly endless list of topics that may interest you.  “Transportation” and “Freight” are two topics I started following recently, and have found some interesting stories.  Gerardo follows a lot of content producers, as well, like CNET, Daily Edition, and CNN.

Topics2

Flipboard will customize your news feed with media posts related to your preferred topics or publishers.  Flip through them like would turn the page of a magazine.  Have something you want to read later? Save or favorite it.  See a story your colleague or staff may want to read? It’s easy to share content through email or your social media networks.

“I’ve tried a few other news apps like Google News,” says Gerardo.  “But the content and interface on Flipboard is better, and it’s nice to have all your news in one app, instead of looking for it in 10 different places.”  Flipboard is free for all your devices and is now available for the web.

One more thing: look out for new updates and features soon in response to Apple’s release of their news application.  I think we can expect Flipboard to continue on their innovative track as they compete for your attention.  As always, let us know what you think about Flipboard or any other content on the blog, either below in the comments or via email at blog@edcus.com.

This post is part of a series that features our staff’s favorite mobile apps.  More applications are coming your way soon with EDC’s launch of our new estimating and inventory apps for Apple devices.  Want to know more? Sign up for launch updates at www.EDCUS.com/mobile.  


Screen images via Flipboard