The iPhone has always been enticing to business owners, from its ability to keep daily communications going as well as having the power to get work done. While Apple hasn’t really changed the hardware of the iPhone over the past couple of generations they have made adjustments to the iOS software. The company just detailed their latest update to the system in the form of iOS 6, and here are 6 improvements that businessmen and women should look forward to.
Improvements to Phone Calls
When running a business you’ll likely need to be on the phone for at least part of the day, but there are also times when you may not be able to talk such as when you’re driving, at a meeting, or have your hands full with a project. With the update, you can now respond to a phone with a text message if you can’t talk or even send a prewritten message like “I’m busy” or “I’ll call you later”. You can even set up a Do Not Disturb setting for certain time periods to avoid phone calls during meetings or late at night.
Social media has become a necessary part of every business. Twitter integration was added back in the iOS 5 update and many speculated as to where the Facebook integration was. Apple has now added making it easier than ever to manage your business’s social media right from your phone.
Updates to Email
Email is a primary form of communication when running a business. Many businesses already use their phones as their main medium for receiving and sending emails. While iOS 6 doesn’t revolutionize email, it has some nice touch ups. For starters you can now add video and images to the emails you create on your phone. You also have a cloud based VIP inbox so you’ll be able to ensure that you don’t miss emails from important individuals like business partners amongst the other trivial mail you may receive.
Map Update Doubles as GPS
Any business person will need to have transportation. Whether its traveling to a meeting or even an event with your family you are going to need to know how to get places. iPhones have often been critiqued by Android users for the lack navigation. Originally using Google Maps, Apple has scrapped the original and built a new map app from the ground up, which comes with turn by turn navigation as well as sky views of cities and streets. And with urban areas being very popular locations for businesses and startups, the app will not only detect traffic but also suggest alternative routes so you can get to your destination as fast as possible. Plus you save money in that you no longer need to purchase a TomTom or separate navigation device.
Maybe 2.0 is a little too much as the software hasn’t been completely revamped, but it is getting some very nice touch ups. For starters Siri is finally coming to the iPad an iOS device that is very popular for business but has been neglected the software so far. Siri can now also give recommendations on restaurants to eat at with a client as well as information on movies and sports. But the biggest touch up is that you can now open apps with your voice. This will save you a great deal of time from scrolling through pages of apps. Siri will also possibly be getting a button in cars in the future so you can send messages, check emails, make phone calls, check your calendar and plenty of other tasks while you are driving.
Passbook is a Game Changer
The most impressive feature of iOS 6 however is hands down Passbook. The feature will keep all your boarding passes, Starbucks gift cards for that coffee in the morning, gas cards, credit cards, and things of that nature in one place. Having that kind of information on your phone not only makes it more streamlined but it also protects you since an iPhone isn’t quite as easy to access as a wallet filled with credit cards you may have left on a café table. And as an added bonus, if you are flying on a business trip your phone will be able to not only hold your boarding pass but also notify you if your gate has changed so you don’t miss your flight.
Apple has stated that iOS 6 will be available in the fall likely around the same time that they will be announcing iPhone 5. All the updates move the software forward and it is an update that many business owners as well as the average consumer should be looking forward to.
This guest post comes from Kayvon. He’s in charge of blogging about tech-related personal finance news at CreditCardForum, which is a popular forum where people discuss everything from gas credit cards to techniques for negotiating interest rates.