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iPhones and Laptops

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by nate456789, Dec 17, 2009.

  1. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    How many of you guys use iphones or laptops for your billing or route management?

    I wrote some software a couple of years ago for the laptop to manage my routes and I am writing some stuff now for the iphone to replace it.
    It does everything and more that the laptop does and it fits in my pocket.

    Just looking for some ideas and curious if anyone sees a need for it.
     
  2. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    i would be sooooo grateful if you did. its a shame that it probably wont be ready by the time i start plowing.
     
  3. cold_and_tired

    cold_and_tired PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,246

    My Iphone is a life saver when we are plowing. I primarily check weather forecasts and keep track of times with it. I use the timeclock app to keep track of employee hours also.
     
  4. show-n-go

    show-n-go Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    I made a post about some software that's out there already for the iphone and your pc. I'll dig up my post. I found the app and ask if anyone on here was using it but i got no responce.
     
  5. show-n-go

    show-n-go Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    here it is, it's called nediso, if you search in the aoo store for that name you will see it. The iphone version is free too. But i think you have to buy the other half of it for your pc, not sure i didn't look into it that far.
    http://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?t=92550
     
  6. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    It looks promising but there are a couple of things that I don't like about it.

    First, no standardized pricing - it says call for a quote.
    I really only plow maybe three months a year. Do I have to pay a monthly fee the rest of the year?? I want to buy something and it is mine to use for as long as I want with out having to subscribe to a service.

    Second it's web based. I don't know about you but my AT&T network is not the most reliable. Nor the fastest.
    The biggest thing about this setup I don't like is My data is on someone elses servers and not on my machine to manage.

    It has several useful features and I can see what they are trying to accomplish with managing from the field by using the internet to share data.
    But it really doesn't give me a warm fuzzy feeling to have to pay a subscription.

    I want to buy and app - Load it on my phone. and use it. If I want a desktop app to sink to I can buy that or maybe get lucky and it comes with it.
    Even for my real job I tend to steer clear of Web software that you essentially rent year to year.
    When your business relies on it to function day to day, I don't want to be at the mercy of a vendor.
     
  7. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    Pricing

    They got back with me for pricing - and it it way over priced. Even for the really big contractors I think.

    From their email :

    Hello Nate,
    thank you for contacting sales!

    Our software service price is based on number of users logging into the system. It is $95/month per user.

    The user license includes:
    - unlimited iPhone (Nediso Snow) users
    - unlimited customer management storage
    - all current and new features that we offer
    - free initial setup training sessions

    Please let me know if you would like to schedule an online demo next week!

    Thank you,

    Kriss Smolka
    Project Manager

    New Edition Software, LLC
     
  8. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    I too talked to him. Kriss is a great guy. He walked me through setting up the iphone.

    It is $95 per month, but its month to month. So if you only wanted to use it for dec through feb that is all you would have to pay for. Still seems kinda pricey to me.

    I am demoing the software for 30 days. So i'll keep you pdated. So far i like it. The iphone app is like for crews. It only carries your route list. When you hit refresh it downloads the route list and thats it. After that it doesnt use any data till you hit refresh again. Which you can do after your done with the storm and back to at your house.

    One thing i do not like about the iphone app. Is that you cannot add services in the field. So if you out for 40 hrs and you wind up plowing everything 3 times. At some point you would have to stop get on a computer and add another route list.
     
  9. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Then what are you waiting for. MAKE ONE! I'll gladly pay for it if its nice enough. payup

    But check out this guys app. I think he hit the nail on the head with it. Just needs to make it a stand alone app. And then also check out Time master. They have quickbooks integration with theirs. So you can take all your info and sync it with quickbooks. Would be nice to find one that is a merger of the two.
     
  10. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    Trust me I am chomping at the bit to do this project. Getting my 3 trucks ready has taken most of my free time.
    It's not even about making something to make a profit. It's about making something that helps you get thru the night and keep all your stuff straight after you have been plowing for 20+ hrs straight.
    If it helps someone else too than that is bonus.

    I have been using another iphone software that lets you build databases. I built a ruff app with it to get me thru this season.
    This will also let me figure out what else I need for a real application.
    It's called StoreIt Pro. I can give you my templates if you want to try it.
     
  11. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Yea can you send me your templates. I just bought the app. Worth a try.
     
  12. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    Here are my templates.
    the idea is that you fill in the supporting info first. Route (North, south etc), Equipment (Truck1, Loader etc).
    Then fill in the Customers you have. And build your active route list

    Plowticket is Plowing information for each customer when you plow them.
    Driveways or lots.

    Route list is your different routes. So you can group customers by route and plow order on that route.
    i was planning on having RouteList up as I am plowing. By doing this you can get to all of the information. Customers and Plowticket and make entries and see customer info.

    if you click on phone number, address, email etc it will launch the iPhone app to handle it.
    For example in customers you can call the customer by clicking on their phone number or see a google map by clicking on their address.

    The real power of this app is being able to create views to see data filtered.
    Like seeing only active customers, or customers not plowed yet.
    I think my views are in the template. if not I will try to figure out how to export them.
    Views are located in the lower right corner of the app once you open a category.
    Customer, route, equipment etc. are what they are calling categories. Most people think of these as tables of data or individual spread sheets.

    I assume this site wont delete my attachment but if it does let me know.
    If you have any questions or ideas. Let me know.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Ok sweet. I get it. Acutally really cool idea. How do i get to where i can edit it? I want to add a spot for salt usage.

    And on adding customers. It wont let me save any.

    Ok i think im figureing this out. WOW the things you can do with this. I have to go in and adjust some of the values cause they dont know where to pull the data from. Plowticket doesnt know where the customer list is. So i had to adjust it. And so forth.

    I'll see if i can mess with it some tonight and i'll give you an updated one :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2009
  14. stroker79

    stroker79 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,802

    Are you using this on the iphone?

    Im a reg dev but still learning how to make an app. I would like to try it.
     
  15. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Yes we are using this on the iphone.

    Right now the only option we have is a soso $100 a month job. We need a standalone iphone app. Hopefully one that can sync with quickbooks :D
     
  16. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Ok i have played with it for a while. And while i really like it. One big thing thats missing. Reports.

    There is no way to view reports at the end of the day. You would have to go through each one, one by one. I was really hoping to go away from paper routes this season. But looks like i'll have to stick with them. :(

    Anyone have one setup in excel? Cause you can view excel files on the iphone.
     
  17. nate456789

    nate456789 Senior Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 194

    Yeah you would have to open the Plowticket table in excel. Which means connecting to the phone and saving as text file. It creates a tab delimited file that you can do what ever you want with the data.
    I was thinking about having my old program import that text file and I can use my existing billing reports and postcard mailers.
    Not the sexiest implementation, but it will keep me from dragging my laptop along with me.
     
  18. I have my laptop in my truck when I plow. I also have a printer in my truck for my laptop for printing receipts, invoices or letters. I have highspeed internet in the truck as well for weather updates etc. My email comes to my blackberry.
     
  19. forestfireguy

    forestfireguy PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,276

    Any apps like this available for blackberry devices? I would be LOST without mine. Mostly using it for radar and up to the minute forcasts, but would love to see something like what you guys are describing.
     
  20. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Yea i dont have wireless high speed internet around here :( or i would just do that.