10 Ways Professional Photographers Can Use the iPhone
Alright, I admit upfront that this article partly at an attempt to convince myself that I should replace my iPod Touch with the new iPhone 3G. Last week I wrote my first piece about the new iPhone, and since then I've been giving a lot of thought to how I can justify getting the phone for my business needs. So here's my list of practical uses for the iPhone.
1. Cell Phone Replacement: While the iPod Touch has, of course, many of the same important features as the iPhone, the missing phone usually means, for me anyway, leaving the Touch in my bedside drawer. I have a 5th generation iPod that I keep my car, so taking the Touch and my cell phone with me everywhere I like being too weighted down by gadgets. Replacing my Sony Ericson cell phone with the iPhone is of course obviously a better way to go. The only draw back in the extra $30 per month on the cell phone bill.
2. Push Feature: I'm looking forward to the push feature of the iPhone whereby all my contacts, calendar appointments, emails, and particular documents will automatically updated for me. Inputting client data into my computer and then syncing it to my cell phone can be a little time consuming, so any feature that will save me a little less time at the computer is very important.
3. Client Photos: I've always thought it would be great to take a photo of my wedding photography clients at the end of a sell, so the iPhone would be just the stylish camera to do so. I could send them a thank you email with their photo almost instantly. Better yet, I could take a photo of all three us together and send an email with the subject, "your wedding photographer thanks you." Likewise, the camera on the iPhone could be a useful networking tool in the same manner. There are some people you meat and really become friendly with that you it's great to snap a photo of them and keep in touch that way.
4. Updated Galleries: By having my iPhone with me almost everywhere I go, I will be able to use it as part of a networking and client consultation tool whereby I can share my photography portfolio. The iPhone screen is a very nice size for viewing and if photos are automatically updated when I add to selected galleries in Aperture, that will also be a plus. While I'm not crazy about the web designs of .Mac galleries, I'm learning to live with them simply because of they are integrated with other Apple applications.
5. Educational Tool: I'm always looking to learn and try out new or different photography and lighting techniques and model poses that I could use on my next shoot. Having short instructional slide shows and videos on my iPhone means that I can study the material almost anywhere. I don't have to wait until I'm at home in front of my computer.
6. iPhone on a shoot: The most difficult parts of shooting weddings is keeping up with group shots. It might be useful to keep a gallery of group shots on my iPhone that I can glance at to remind me of group shots that I might have missed—ort of a visual checklist.
7. Notes and text messages: My business requires me to meet with clients, attend networking meetings, and run numerous errands. I would like to keep as much of the notes and written lists on my iPhone instead of the paper pads that I typically use. Returning client calls will be easier because the stored contact information will be more easily accessible. Even sending a brief message to new networking contacts could be done in my car right after a meeting, instead of waiting to get home to do that essential follow-up.
8. Expense tracking: There are several expense tracking and invoice creation software and websites for the iPhone. I haven't perused anyone of them yet, but I'm sure being able to develop invoices and keep track of expenses on my iPhone could be very useful.
9. GPS tracking: I already have a Garmin GPS in my car, but it certainly would be great to have the iPhone's tracking system. I've saved plenty of time and headaches with GPS services. It's a must tool for any business person.
10. And finally the biggest reason for getting the iPhone G3: it's just plain cool. I'm not a material person in any shape or form, but sometimes I just like to splurge on something just because it excites me. Mostly I make consumer and business purchases because they have practical applications and because I might be able to use it as a tax write-off. iPhone fits both those requirements. So on July 11 or a few days after, I'm looking to switch to probably the best selling product of the year.
My list of reasons for getting the iPhone is fairly basic. So I would definitely like to hear about other reasons for an iPhone purchase.