April 5, 2015

APP Review :Hands on Microsoft Office Lens vs INTSIG CamScanner

Since change of leadership at Microsoft, it has been taking some pretty nice steps in mobile apps department.  Making its apps available on all major mobile stores and that to for free. Recent spat of acquisition like accompli mail client(Rebranded as Microsoft Outlook preview ) for mobiles,  Sunrise calendar etc are some pretty good and surprising moves by the tech giant. 

To take one step itself ahead in game of providing end to end office/productivity solution on mobile platforms Microsoft has launched Office Lens a document scanner for android and Apple IOS. It was launched for Windows Phone last year .It is still in beta mode for android  for testers to test and full version has been launched for Apple IOS. In-spite of being in beta period  it would be compared with existing document scanners available on mobile app stores.  Today we are going to compare Microsoft Office lens with leading document scanner INTSIG CamScanner. I think this is first such review for Microsoft Office Lens.

Test Device
OnePlus One
DISPLAY Resolution
1080 x 1920 pixels (~401 ppi pixel density)
PLATFORM
Android OS  v4.4.4 (KitKat)
Chipset
Qualcomm MSM8974AC Snapdragon 801
CPU
Quad-core 2.5 GHz Krait 400
GPU
Adreno 330
Camera
13 MP, 4128 x 3096 pixels, autofocus, dual-LED flash,

Microsoft Office Lens










Office lens is useful when you are in hurry and want to upload the document really fast. The images shot in Office lens are pretty clean and make document scanning a ease even in low light. It is large download almost 30mb on my phone. Office lens gives a functionality of saving the document to onenote, word, PowerPoint, Excel, your gallery as a image, pdf etc. Which means you can seamlessly integrate with your office suite sitting on your mobile. As I said earlier it's a wonderful step to complete end to end MS office suite for mobiles. Office lens allows you to search docs saved in onenote using Optical character recognition(OCR) but is not refined as CamScanner's OCR. Office Lens definitely lacks advanced features provided by CamScanner. Maybe those will come in upcoming versions.




CamScanner 









CamScanner has been my favorite all these days working as my portable scanner for all my documents send through my mobiles. It has been a reliable partner when it comes to taking clean scanned docs. Almost everyone I know uses CamScanner as a portable mobile scanner. But still CamScanner falls behind office lens when it comes to automatic cleaning of scanned copy. You need to have more steady hand when scanning document with CamScanner. Whereas its a breeze scanning with office lens. But when it comes to cleaning the document with given filters and options, CamScanner is way ahead of office lens. The Optical character recognition(OCR) in CamScanner works flawlessly. In the sharing department CamScanner allows share as pdf and jpeg. It provides usual share using other apps. So you can share using Google, Outlook, one note, Google keep etc. Pretty decent in this department.

 



Verdict

Microsoft Office lens

Microsoft Office lens is best when you want a no frills application with clean interface, great scanning capability, awesome automated clean scans.

CamScanner 

CamScanner is useful when you want to have portable scanner with great capability as a clean scanner,varied options to edit and crop the document and greats options to share using other apps in your phone.

My choice : Microsoft Office lens for quick scanning capability and seamless integration with Microsoft office apps.

Download at: 

SMS Marketing: How to Guide

There was a Time when SMS marketing seemed to be a spent force with no apparent impact on customer mindset, as Marketer's SMSes had to compete with the messages from friends and family for mind-share of the customers. But that seems to be changing as most of the customers have moved to messaging apps like WhatsApp, SnapShat, Facebook messenger, WeChat etc for connecting with loved ones. The clutter in one's SMS inbox has reduced , with customers getting almost 85% less SMSes and  marketers  gaining more mind-share of the customers.

So now is the perfect time to utilize SMS marketing opportunity for effectively reaching out to customers.

In doing so marketer has to keep in mind few rights and few wrongs.

Do's

[Do's]Build your phone number list from scratch:

Imagine a situation when you received a unsolicited SMS from a unknown business, there is a great possibility you will ignore it. So to overcome this, ask your customers to provide their phone numbers  if they would like to receive communication from you. Here's a method used by a restaurant near my office which I frequent for lunch. Restaurant provides the feedback form and pen with bill statement. So till the time payment is completed at the counter , customer is idle with the feedback form and pen, and fills the form 90% of the time.
This may be little bit tedious but it is sure shot way to get contact numbers of customers who may be genuinely interested in your product or services and would want to interact more with your business.Giving a call can be  too much disruptive for the customers , whereas the SMS is a subtle way to reach a potential customer. A great way to show that you are offering something of value without being to much pushy. You can update about new discounts, products, services or maybe announcing a new branch or location.

[Do's]Keep it short and Simple:

Lot has been written about the size and preciseness of SMS. Give your message in clear and short way. Customers love it when their needs as addressed in short, precise manner with to the point communication.

[Do's]Include captivating call to action:

Language you use should be actionable , addressed to the reader in person, include clear value proposition in SMS, with focusing on completing action ASAP by using words like today, now. If possible try to personalize your SMS with available SMS tools in market like Text Blaster , this could be anything like replying with some code for special offers, website links to redirect to website landing page etc.

Don't

[Don't] Buy Telephone numbers:

As mentioned in the starting of post, buying a number database is waste of money, time , resources and efforts. As you would never know if the targeted audience is interested in you service or not. If customer is uninterested in getting any type of communication from you, such customer can block your number. Be careful as it will hurt your brand in customer's mind.

[Don't ] Always Sell:

Every Customer  can be potentially miffed by the pushy nature of service providing firm. You don't want your business to be remembered as intimidating and  pushing products at customer's face every now and then. Use your feedback form to gather as much information you can about the customers. Birthday, anniversary, festival wishes are great occasions to be on top of mind of customers and not look pushy.

[Don't] forget yourself:

Imagine a situation when you draft and send a amazing SMS campaign and forget to mention who you are and what you represent. Well that's a  awful waste of opportunity with money, efforts.

Here are some benefits you get by using SMS as a Marketing Medium.

Benefits

High Open Rate-

Unlike Email , the rate of opening an SMS is almost 100%, as soon as users see an SMS they do see its content.

High Conversion Rate-

As explained earlier due to targeted Marketing to customers , the conversion rate is high. Its just like programmatic advertising or profile based advertising, where you know that customer is willing to hear from you.

Reliable Medium-

Its a reliable way to reach out to customers, you don't have to fight email filters or user filter to reach customers. As the clutter in message inbox has reduced it has become more reliable.

It’s a direct, immediate channel-

You get direct access and 24/7 access to customers. With immediate effect of customer reading and taking action.

Opt-in marketing Channel-

Customers are willing to opt-in to get communication from you. This helps in focused targeting of customers , with sure customer response as he/she is interested in interacting with your business.