The best business productivity applications for 2015

Advice Edward Jones
Feb 19, 2015

Google Drive, Yammer, LogMeIn, Evernote, Quip and IFTTT all make Ed Jones' list of top apps

In early 2013, I compiled a list of the top five apps for driving business productivity. Two years is a long time in the technology world; applications have evolved. Developed using more advanced software, powered by cloud and running on upgraded hardware; applications are better, faster, stronger (name that song).

Back then, the Windows Store had just launched with around 60,000 applications, while Google Play and the iStore hovered around the 700,000 mark. Today, Windows Store boasts over 500,000 applications with the iStore and Google Play offering more than 1 million applications.

With all the options, it can be difficult to see the wood through the trees. To save you time and hassle, I’ve been back to the forest and I’ve been busy with the chainsaw (no application trees were harmed in the making of this post).

Read on to find the best business productivity applications for 2015:

Google Drive

Let’s start with a survivor from 2013, Google Drive comes with 15GB of free storage and can be accessed with a Google account. Since is past inclusion, the platform has developed beyond a simple document sharing and collaboration app into a full-blown online productivity suite.

As well as multiple individuals being able to use and edit shared documents in real time, the platform interacts connects with thousands of applications from Google Analytics right through to AutoCAD 360. 

Price:

Free to download (additional storage available from $1.99 /month for 100GB)

Available On:

iPhone, iPadAndroid, Windows PhoneWeb

Alternatives:

Also in the file sharing and collaboration space…

-          DropBox

-          OneDrive

Yammer

Purchased by Microsoft in 2012, Yammer is widely referred to as ‘Facebook for Work’, which could soon be challenged the launch of Facebook at Work.

Yammer is a private social network connecting colleagues across teams and geographical boundaries. It facilitates project collaboration; information sharing and can also act as a knowledgebase for the organisation.

The platform also plugs into a series of Microsoft applications including SharePoint, Office 365 and will soon integrate with Office Web Apps allowing real time co-editing of documents through Word, PowerPoint and Excel.

Price:

Organisations looking to sign up can get Yammer Basic free with a range of premium plans starting from $3 per user/month.

App is free to download.

Available On:

iPad, iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, Web

Alternatives:

-          Facebook for Business

LogMeIn

Whether on business trips or at home, mobile devices and the internet have changed the way we work. LogMeIn allows you to connect to all the important stuff on your work PC or Mac, accessed via your mobile or home computer.

You can launch any PC programme or access any file from your mobile device.

Price

LogMeIn Pro starts from $99 /year for access to 2 computers from the web, your desktop and iOS and Android devices.

App is free to download.

Available on:

Windows, Mac, Android, iPad, iPhone

Alternatives:

-          Microsoft Remote Desktop (RDC)

-          Apple Remote Desktop

-          Teamviewer

Evernote

Evernote is the central repository for everything you want to remember. It can act as a digital notebook storing photos, web pages, notes, PDFs, audio files and to-do lists. Its slick interface makes navigation to relevant information a breeze and its application to work is virtually limitless.

Collect minutes from meetings, bookmark business critical information and collate a series of personal development information. Sharing functionality will also aid collaboration with team members and it can be accessed from anywhere.

Price: 

Free with 60 MB of uploads per month. Upgrading to a premium account and 1 GB of data uploads per month costs just $45 a year.

App is free to download.

Available on:

AndroidiOSWindows PhonePCMacGoogle Chrome and Web

Alternatives:

-          OneNote

-          Simplenote 

Quip

The fantastic little app known as Quip, is a mobile word processing app set to rival the Microsoft Office suite. Created by Facebook's former chief technology officer, Quip combines messaging with traditional document creation to make collaboration a breeze.

You can create documents, spreadsheets, and presentations whilst collaborating in real time with team members. You can even collaborate on the creationg of blog posts, manage projects, or even minutes during a meeting.

Price:

The basic application is free with a variety of Quip business options available from $12 per user/month.

Available on:

iPad, iPhone, Android, Web

Alternatives

-          Microsoft Office

-          Mac – Pages, Numbers, Keynote

IFTTT

“If this, then that” is a simple concept with huge capabilities. Plugging into a variety of websites and third party applications, IFTTT allows you to create almost limitless ‘recipes’ of triggers and outcomes to automate activities and life-hack your work.

For example, you can create a recipe whereby every time you release a blog post you can trigger social media post across Twitter, Facebook and Google Plus. If it’s going to rain tomorrow, you can get a text in the morning telling you to take an umbrella or even switch your phone to silent when you arrive in the office (based on GPS).

This is just the start, the more you use it, the more you discover.

Price:

Free to use and download.

Available on:

iPhone, iOSAndroid, Web

Alternatives:

Nothing even comes close.

There you have it, the best business productivity applications for 2015. Evernote and Google Drive have stood the test of time, new to the list are a series of powerful contenders. Let’s see what happens in 2016….

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