We love our smartphones for texting, e-mail, web surfing, and yes, for even making the occasional phone call! But did you know you can do so much more with your smartphone?
Here are just a few of the smartphone uses they might not tell you about at the local phone store!
1. Use Your Phone A Remote Control :- Some of the coolest apps in the App Store or the Android Market are the ones that let you turn your smartphone into a remote control device. You can control dozens of gadgets from your DVR to your computer to a high-end digital camera. You can even impress your colleagues at work by using your iPhone as a remote for PowerPoint or Keynote presentations.
2. PC/Mac Webcam :- You can use your phone in conjunction with messaging applications (Skype, Google+, Yahoo, Windows Live Messenger, AIM, etc.) and Wi-Fi for video chatting.
3. Scanner :- Whether you want to scan a receipt for tax purposes, a business card for work, a barcode for a price check, or a check to be deposited, there are a host of scanning apps that will let you get rid of your bulky faxing/scanning combo from the late ‘90s. It’s best to figure out what you’ll be scanning and then and download a function-specific app. If you don’t want to download an app, you can snap a photo and store it on your phone or computer to use later (for example, take a snapshot of a recipe card).
4. Replacement For Your Wallet :- While some women like carrying around a fashionable purse, I prefer leaving my apartment with as little as possible. There are applications for storingcredit card information (Visa, AmEx, and Mastercard have their own apps) and banking information (Bank of America, Capital One, PNC and others have their own apps). And if you have discount or membership cards, there are apps for storing their information as well.
5. Live TV:- Many of the local service providers (Comcast, Verizon, etc.) and telephone providers (Sprint) offer applications for streaming live content to a smartphone. And there are specific apps for particular programs – like MLB sports. But if you just want to be able to watch live TV on the go and are unaffiliated .
6. Mobile Hotspot:- Some phones allow you to create a Wi-Fi network that multiple devices — usually up to5 or 7 — can use at once. This allows your phone to get your iPad or laptop on to Wi-Fi, without a router or another peripheral device. Of course, there is an upcharge, usually around $20 to $30 extra a month. If you’re a frequent traveler, you may think it worth it since you usually have to pay extra fees for Internet coverage on each of your devices anyway.
7. Identify Things :- I admit one of my greatest limitations is not being able to accurately identify objects. For instance, I’ll recognize an individual and not remember her name, or see a picture of a famous landmark and not be to recall what it is. Google Goggles is becoming my new secret weapon -snap a photo of something and Google uses the image to perform a search. While it won’t ID a passerby on the street, it’s great for identifying products, famous landmarks, storefronts, artwork, and popular images online, like celebrities. The algorithm behind the recognition technology is improving, so hopefully soon I’ll be able to snap a photo of a woman on the street wearing shoes I’m coveting and find out who makes them!
8. Accept Credit Card Purchases:- If you’ve just started a business, purchasing a credit cardmachine can be a hassle and pricey. Applications like Square let you accept credit card payments on your phone. A small dongle that attaches to your phone accepts credit card swipes.
9. Advanced Camera:- While the camera on your phone suffices for everyday pictures, you can get SLR- quality photo with the purchase of an add-on. Some companies offer adapters that let you use your camera lenses on the iPhone, while others offer their own lenses.
10. Heart Rate Monitor :- Using your iPhone camera monitor, you can count your beats per minute (BPM). While we haven’t vetted the accuracy of these monitoring tools, most of the apps claim to operate by using the intense light of the phone camera to detect the capillaries’ movements and calculate your heartbeat – so it doesn’t require any additional monitors to purchase.