There are so many different smartphones on the market nowadays. Long gone are the days of only a few main brands offering smartphone capabilities. Now, all our old favourites are there, but budget brands are creating excellent smartphone options, which can save you plenty of money without limiting your options or usage.
If you are self-employed or run a very small business, you might have been managing with your personal smartphone up until now. It has all the apps you need, you are used to it, and the contracts are all set up. In those early days, accounting is simple, and we only really need our phones for emails, social media updates and the occasional call. When businesses are small, or just starting out, it’s easy to find that your personal and business lives blend into one. Smartphone usage included.
But as your business grows, it’s important that you separate the two. Getting a smartphone that’s purely for business use helps your business to grow. It simplifies your accounting; it helps you to set your business apart from your personal life and it can help to protect your privacy. A separate phone can also give your business greater flexibility and connectivity.
Choosing a smartphone for business use isn’t the same as choosing your personal phone. When it comes to the phone that you use outside of work, you might want the latest technology, the coolest design, or other fun features. Or, you might not be remotely bothered, instead opting for the cheapest option at the time. For business, there is much more to think about.
Figure Out What You Need
The right smartphone for you very much depends on what you need from it. In turn, this depends on the needs of your business, staffing levels, where and who you do business with, the technology that you currently use, and how you plan to use your business smartphone. Here are some of the things that you need to think about when working out what you need from your smartphone.
How Many Phones Do You Need?
If you are self-employed, a sole trader or you work as a freelancer, you might only need one smartphone for your business. But if you employ other people, or have a partner, do you want them to have business smartphones too? Not every member of staff needs a business phone; it very much depends on their job role and how much responsibility you want them to have. But if you have team members who work remotely, or who are crucial to the running of your business, you might want them to have a business phone, and for it to be on the same plan as your own.
Where Will You Use Your Phone?
It’s important to have at least some idea of where most of your smartphone usage will happen before you start to think about both plans and handsets. If you spend most of your time in the office or working from home, you’ll be able to connect your phone to your Wi-Fi and data allowance might not be too much of a concern.
On the other hand, if you spend time on the road, or work in multiple locations, you’ll need a good data allowance, but also the assurance that your smartphone will have at least good 4G signal all over the country.
Another big consideration when it comes to choosing a smartphone for your business is compatibility with other hardware. If your business already uses iPads or Apple computers, iPhones might be the best choice. You might also want to make sure your smartphone is compatible with your personal phone and tablet, just to make syncing between them easier if you ever need to.
Nowadays, there are more options when it comes to syncing between different brands and operating systems. But it will still make your life easier if they are fully compatible from the get-go. The main choices are still Apple or Android. Apple is regularly updated, fast, powerful, and reliable. Android has more options, far more budget-friendly handsets, a greater collection of apps, and connectivity with more brands. There are pros and cons to both, and often the choice comes down to which operating system you already use.
Perhaps the most important consideration when choosing any smartphone is budget. Your budget will affect the handset that you choose but also the plan. Most businesses find that it’s cheaper and more cost-effective to buy a handset outright and then look for the best SIM only deals. The Best SIM only deals with Lebara can be a fantastic option. Lebara plans are 30-day rolling plans, giving your business the flexibility to make changes whenever you need to. They also offer excellent coverage and easy pricing, helping you to stick within your budget. Once you know what you need your phone to do, you can start to look at some other specifics.
Smartphone batteries have come a long way. While they are unlikely to meet the week that our old Nokias gave us in the early 2000s, they are making strides in the right direction. The battery life that you need will depend on how much you plan to use your smartphone, what you plan to do with it, and how long you spend outside of the office. If you plan to use it to send emails and make short calls from the office, battery life might not be a big consideration. But if you spend time on the road, need to use banking apps, social media and the camera and make longer calls, you’ll need a longer battery life. You might also want to invest in a car charger and an emergency power bar, just in case.
Your first thought might be that the camera on your smartphone isn’t that important for your business. But could it be? Could having a high-quality camera on your smartphone mean that you can share quick videos and photos to social media platforms, helping your business to grow and reaching your audience effectively? Even if you don’t use your camera now, think of the ways that you could before ruling out camera quality as a consideration.
Nowadays we save things like photos and videos to the cloud. But if you want plenty of apps, you may still need decent phone storage. More phone storage can also save you money in the long-term if it means that you don’t have to shell out monthly or yearly fees to increase your cloud-based storage.
Again, the amount of power that you need from your smartphone will depend on where you want to use it and what you want to do with it. For calls and emails, you are unlikely to need an incredibly powerful phone. For downloading, streaming and video calls, you might need much more power. How you use your personal phone can be a great place to start.
The right phone for your business should be one that suits your needs and matches your budget. There’s no right or wrong option, but it is worth taking the time to get it right. The right smartphone can improve connectivity, flexibility and make the daunting task of running a modern business so much easier.