I meet a lot of people, and I always seem to beÂ amassingÂ a collection of business cards, whether it’s from potential clients or just someone I meet at a networking function. They say the business card is dead, but my rolodex doesn’t agree.
There have been lots of business card scanning programs over the years, but none that really meet my standards. Most of the time they break, or just don’t scan the card properly, making them worthless apps. Well recently, ScanBizCards Business Card Reader [iTunes link] sent me a free license to try out their goods, so I gave it a shot.
Here’s the scenario: You’re at a boring function with your buddy, and in between trying to stop him from eating all the mini-weiners and hitting on the wait staff, you’ve met a valuable contact. You don’t want to risk losing this card in your hand, so you need to get the info into your iPhone now before it has any chance of going anywhere. You could take a few minutes and hammer everything away on the keyboard, but if you want to save the time, you can just scan it now. That’s where ScanBizCards comes in.
Set a business card on a clear work surface and fire up the app. Take a picture of the card, then crop it if you like so that only the pertinent info is on the screen. After a brief scan, the program comes back with everything filled out and good to go. Then you can take that info and send it to LinkedIn, your address book, send them an e-mail, add a reminder, send it to a buddy, or just file it away for future reference. There are a ton of options.
Now the big question: How well does it work? In my testing, I found that it did pretty well. Not everything was perfect on every card, mind you. For example, it added an extra period to my website on my business card, making the link unusable. It also wasn’t able to read much of another card, but in all fairness, that card had some pretty crazy fonts on there that are difficult to read anyways. Overall, it did pretty well. But any problems i had were easily remedied, as you can modify each scan by hand if need be.
It’s pretty amazing stuff overall, and despite a few hiccups, it’s worth the $5.99 to me just for the extra convenience. That may seem like a lot of money for an app, but if you’re one who gets and scans business cards all the time, this might be the way to go for you as well.