So you decided to jump into the world of Windows 8 and Windows RT? While Windows 8 users can certainly use a mixture of Windows Store apps and traditional PC programs, those with the Surface RT and other ARM tablets don’t have the same luxury.
With Windows Store still quite low on the number of apps, is there enough decent business software out there? Actually, there are quite a few good apps. Obviously the built-in desktop version of Office will be quite important, but there are a few handy Windows Store apps as well.
Some of these apps might not apply to all types of business users, but they are still worth at least mentioning. Without further ado, let’s take a look:
This one really goes without saying. Skype is an ideal communications system for video calls, voice calls or even just instant messaging to business and work contacts. Skype for Start UI can be docked to the side of the screen, allowing you to use Skype will multi-tasking with other programs.
The integration into the Start UI with notifications on the live tiles is great with Skype as well.
Credit Card Terminal
For those that need a mobile credit card system, Credit Card Terminal is the perfect app for you. The program is designed to work with both Windows RT and Windows 8 devices and can accept Visa, MasterCard, Discover and America Express.
The program works by manually typing in the card numbers, or you can swipe the card using a USB card reader. You can also get signatures easily with touch, stylus or mouse.
Looking for Invoice management software for Windows 8 and RT? This app is designed with an easy-to-use styling but is also feature packed allowing you to great company, inventory items, invoices and much more.
You can even print these invoices directly to a printer or turn them into PDF files, perfect for sending via email.
Invoice360 also has several different invoice templates that are customizable to your needs, making it simple to incorporate your business logo and layout with a WYSIWYG user face template designer.
Although you might prefer to use SkyDrive, which includes 7GB of free space for Windows 8/RT users, sometimes you need something that has a bit more business-class abilities and features. With Box, you get a 99.9% uptime guarantee, document collaboration, Salesforce.com integration and full text search.
There are also robust and useful administrative controls, strong security features and more.
Brandify is a free service which is designed to allow home and small businesses to reach more customers through improvement of their online branding. The software helps you evaluate the strength of your online presence and provides guidance on how to improve it.
The software can also monitor your online accounts in one place and much more.
You might already know exactly what this is, but for those not familiar with Evernote, this is the perfect service for keeping pictures, notes and audio recordings organized and synced across your mobile and desktop platforms.
Evernote has an app that works with pretty much every OS on the market, which is especially important if you or your business utilizes a mixed ecosystem consisting of different Apple, Microsoft or even Google platforms.
There is also a $45 yearly subscription version that gets rid of ads and allows you to have PDF search capabilities, 1GB of data uploading, note history options and a few other perks.
This simple app is all about tracking your packages and works with 60 global carriers, including major ones like FedEx and UPS. There are also tracking histories, Bing map integration, and the ability to pin specific packages to the Start Screen.
Keep in mind that this app is not free, it will set you back $2.99. Still, if you are constantly shipping packages for your business, this could come in handy.
Summing it up…
These are certainly not the only business apps out there, just a few of the more highly rated ones. Some of these won’t apply to all types of business owners and you might find many other good apps out there that we didn’t cover in this post. The point is that Windows new UI is in fact a great place for business use, despite what some claim. The enterprise world is still mixed about how Windows RT and Windows 8 can help their businesses, but for those willing to jump in and be early business adopters, it is nice to know that there are already several solid apps to choose from.
Do you use any of these business apps? If so, what is your favorite? Conversely, is there an app we didn’t cover that you feel should have been mentioned? If so, tell us about it in the comments.