Smartphone apps for accountants

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John Stokdyk
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Choosing his favourite mobile apps of 2010, New York Times technology writer John Markoff quipped, “When other people rage about their iPhone dropped calls I just grin. ‘You use a cellphone for phone calls?’ That’s so 20th century!”

Markoff confirmed a trend that Nigel Harris identified in his 2009 Christmas Gadget Countdown – it wasn’t just smartphones that were changing our technology habits, but the software they are able to run.

According to ComScore research, Research in Motion’s BlackBerry range still leads the US smartphone market with a 37.3% share in September, ahead of Apple's 24.3%. Google's Android has now climbed to 21.4% of the total US.

Many developers that have had success with iPhone and iPad apps are now hard at work on migrating similar tools to Android and BlackBerry devices.

In the run-up to Christmas, we reported on how mobile commerce was accounting for a significant volume of retail trade. To confirm this trend Domino’s Pizza reported that sales generated through its iPhone app jumped 63% to £128m in 2010 and now account for more than one-third of all orders. Since its launch last September, more than £1m of sales in the UK have been taken through the Domino's iPhone app, with numbers expected to rise with the coming launch of a similar app for Android.

Just before Christmas, "leicsred" asked other members about the smartphone apps they used and liked. We have compiled this short guide based on their responses and other coverage and suggestions during the past year. Feel free to put forward your own nominations using the Post A Comment link below and we’ll make sure to add it to our growing library of recommended apps.

If we've missed out any of your favourites, be sure to tell us!

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13th Jan 2011 08:22

Hang on ...

Is this article targeting apps specifically written/amended for the mobile phone etc. market or apps that work through the browser?

If it is the latter then a whole lot of products are missing

If the former then on the basis of '.. currently supports mobile browsers, but adapted versions for iPhone and Android are in development ..' why is Xero included? According to the 'blurb' their apps are in development - but then everyone else could also make this claim about their products

mmm..... is there more than meets the eye here?

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13th Jan 2011 10:09


We have had a mobile client version of Xero for a couple of years which is a restricted implementation of Xero designed for any small screen mobile device with a browser.

Short video overviews showing our current mobile device capability are here (iPhone) and an expertly voiced-over one here (Blackberry).

We haven't done much with it for a while so later this year we will be extending our mobile services offering but we won't be releasing platform specific apps for iPhone or Android, etc. favouring an open platform implementation that will run on anything.

Our stats show mobile access growing rapidly and we've got some good stuff in the pipeline now that we've seen how people are using their tablets and smartphones, post iPad.

Mobile app development on discrete platforms like iOS is at a very interesting stage, there are so many apps from so many providers that it's hard to discern one from the other, or to accurately curate the best apps from dross to the extent that it's almost like the application equivalent of email spam. We haven't learned how to filter properly yet.

Gary Turner,
Managing Director, Xero

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13th Jan 2011 10:50


You got me all exciting thinking AmEx had finally released an Android app - the link goes through to the iPhone app. Boo.

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By ksalter
13th Jan 2011 11:57

iphone apps

For business advice at your fingertips - Business Profitability Analyst for Iphone and iPad.....


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13th Jan 2011 12:12

pdf viewer

What about a pdf viewer for Blackberries?  If you don't pick up your emails via an Exchange Server (we use the google app) then you can't open pdf attachements.  I'd love to get an app for this.

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13th Jan 2011 12:14

Iphone envy

I'm pig sick of the way every app developer develops for the iphone before Blackberry or Android.

I can see the justification for more "creative" apps which tie in to Apple's historic prevalence in the cereative industries and it's position in the MP3 player market, but business applications?  Seriously? 

Surely the vast majority of corporate types (especially those in finance positions) have Blackberries rather than iPhones for work.  It wasn't long ago that one big firm shelved its plans to roll our iPhones for everyone (bought in advance) when they couldn't overcome security issues.

I live in fear that the iphone will become cemented as the MS Windows of the smartphone world, considering the poor quality of Apple hardware and architecture, the strangehold that Apple has over software development for its devices and a level of built in obsolescence that would make a football shirt designer blush.

Anyway, rant over.  I'm off to see if there's an app for my Android phone that will let me order laserdiscs and Betamax videos online...

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13th Jan 2011 12:16

Simple Accounting Terms App

This is a very neatly compiled list as usually Well done work by AWB

We also have an app simple accounting Terms App for iPhone /iPad

We also similar application on the Android Platform




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13th Jan 2011 12:20

Log Me In Ignition

Forget all the other apps etc, Log Me In Ignition gives you access to your PC, as if you were sitting right in front of it!!  Therefore you have access to all the software that's on your PC!  The only thing is that your PC has to be left on. 

I would highly recommend this product, I currently use it on an iPhone 3, but can imagine it's even better on the iPad!! 

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13th Jan 2011 14:45

App to record BlackBerry calls?

Would a BlackBerry app that enabled you to record ad hoc calls be of interest?

Would you want to be able to record certain mobile conversations on demand eg to remember what was said when on a call whilst driving, on conference calls, receiving instruction from clients etc?

My company Voxsmart is currently supplying on-site mobile voice recording applications to City firms needing to comply with new FSA mobile recording rules that come into force later this year. We are now starting to look at other market sectors. Does recording mobile calls on demand make sense for accountants? Please let me know what you think.


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By chatman
13th Jan 2011 17:06

Leopold Stotch

Thank you for putting my feelings into words regarding Apple's triumph of marketing over functionality.

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13th Jan 2011 17:53

logmein ignition on ipad fantastically - and is considerably better than on iphone. Plus you actually have a sufficiently large area of screen visible to work on.

On the ipad, you can forget all the funny moving of the cursor associated with ignition on the iphone, and just use the ipad as a touchscreen for your pc. Switching between dual monitors is much easier too using a simple icon at the bottom of the screen.


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14th Jan 2011 08:56

Android phone apps

 Lots of good stuff here but a singular lack of stating which ones can work on an android phone.

Will check it out myself but after spending many fruitless hours finding apps and then finding they only work on Iphones it will be a low priority.


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By 0918121
14th Jan 2011 12:35

PDF Reader for Blackberries

DataViz also distrubute PDF To Go as a part of their Documents to Go range which works well on my BB Bold.

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14th Jan 2011 16:10



I am not sure about the point that because Apple is used more by the creative world , they should stay away from business apps .

I actually think, we could all learn a couple of things from their successful  Marketing Campaigns which after all has them as the highest retail earner per square foot, this does not sound like a company that does not know enough about business.  With regards to people not liking their software people clearly do, so again this is a matter of choice and what is wrong in trying all the phones out.  It is not like blackberry don,t advertise just a much as apple on the Tv so it is not just about marketing.

I feel it is really only people who travel a lot you get the real value of a smartphone or if they are out of the office a lot.   If the Blackberries are having problems reading PDF's from the above comments which I find this a bit strange as everyone argues they are  more suited to business . If  you cannot read a basic pdf doc which most businesses use  ,then all is fair in love and war between the smartphones companies .  This is great for us as a consumer as they are killing themselves to be one up on each other, if blackberry do not not want all the developers going to apple first , then it is up to them to do something about it .

I believe in choice and you have a choice which phone to use, but there is no point in just saying their phone is not as good as an android are a blackberry. From a women,s point of view I just want the app to work, and yes those nice looking men in the Apple store do make a difference because of the customer service. and I promise no other reason.  

The I phone is easy to use , and at the end of the day it just works. Everyone is my office through mobileme can do everything without having to spend hours first to see how it works.  I am speaking for myself but I want a smartphone that does loads of things not just business especially when they are that expensive , and at the weekends I just switch the settings on the mobile so that my business email does not come through.  

-- Kind Regards Sarah@ Douglas Accountancy & Bookkeeping Services, Glasgow

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15th Jan 2011 21:30

Tax Touch for Android phones

..... would be nice.

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By chatman
16th Jan 2011 16:43

"It is not like blackberry don,t advertise just a much as apple

There is more to marketing the advertising on the TV.  Apple are the masters of marketing in my opinion. I know people who bought iPhones because they were not aware that there were other phones that could do the same things and more.

The phrase "it just works", used by Apple fanboys, and quoted in a previous post seems to be used to imply that other products don't; yet I know of no verifiable evidence to suggest that Apple products work better than others or are easier to use. It appears to be a myth, put about by Apple.

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17th Jan 2011 12:37

Out of Date App - Oxford Dictionary of Accounting

*******  Beware the Oxford Dictionary of Accounting app ********

I got one and discovered it was published in 2005!

Apple weren't interesed and the publisher just said an update is in the pipeline

£6.99 for an out of date App!



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17th Jan 2011 18:09

No I am not a fangirl


I am all for people buying software and hardware from all manufactures as I have said in many posts .  If someone  buys an Iphone  without looking at other phones as a business option , then there is nothing much you can do about that. I also know of people who do the same with blackberries and probably other phones . When I had my first phone everyone raved about the Nokia and never looked at other phones. I always thought my samsung was a better phone by miles . So there will aways be competition in the phone market.  I actually have a samsung  as well for when I am away on holidays. 

 My response was to comment  Apple and Business Seriously.  If apple want to develop business apps then so be it.   All the other manufactures can do the same and advertise in all the various ways you can.   Just because you like a Iphone does not make you a fanboy or fangirl.  I like yourself are capable of making a decision as to whether I like a phone or not.  

As regards to "it just works", women say this all the time,  sometimes I think men go into far to much detail as to what a laptop , phone , tablet , Computer does not have.  Women just want it to be easy, and the I phone was ready for the market . There are a lot of women who like the way apple works and I am convinced there is a difference in the  way men and women view hardware and software .

 Too be perfectly honest men care what is under the bonnet of their car. I am not saying all women by any means , but there are plenty of women like me who just want it get from A to B and the car to look nice, after all you have AA and RAC.  I am sure you might not agree.  Another example of a product a marketed well would be the dyson hoover , my husband says a hoover is a hoover, but there are clearly loads people who disagree including myself. I like to enjoy the gadget and the  feel of the product I buy for work.   After all you are using it all day every day.  There  are so many products on market and if we were all the same, none of the manufactures  would be in business .  It may be about time that some of  the other manufactures looked at the success of Apple's Marketing .  As far as know every company needs to market.  So all is fair as far as I am concern in the future of the Business app world.

-- Kind Regards Sarah@ Douglas Accountancy & Bookkeeping Services, Glasgow

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By chatman
18th Jan 2011 00:12

Sarah Douglas

I agree with everything in your last post. It is a shame that marketing makes such a difference, but absolutely true that it does. I agree too that the iPhone is ready for the market, although I would say that it was not ready when it was launched: it had no 3G; no satnav, it couldn't copy and paste and couldn't forward texts or business cards; all functions that other phones already had (although I do accept that they were not white). Yet people still flocked to buy it, even though you had to pay for it. Now there is true marketing supremacy for you.

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18th Jan 2011 15:40

I agree it was not ready

Hi Chatman

I agree the first Iphone was not ready , and I did not go near it ,  but I have been happy with my 3 GSI . 



-- Kind Regards Sarah@ Douglas Accountancy & Bookkeeping Services, Glasgow

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19th Jan 2011 16:51

Logmein on iPad

Yes, it works on iPad, but it is usually slow. Much depends on the speed of your internet connections both iPad end and PC end; screen refreshing can be frustratingly slow, and using the iPad onscreen keyboard and particularly the mouse is an acquired art! Makes spreadsheets and word processing very unattactive.



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27th Jan 2011 11:05

Android lack of quality business apps

The android market is playing catch up with the already established apps in Itunes.

2011 will see a drastic rise in android apps, as the industry push android tablets with releases from various manufacturers planned throughout the year.....

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25th Jun 2014 06:31

RHUB remote support servers on iPad. It works well and gives sufficiently large area of screen, visible to work on. 

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