Copyright © 2011 Marlon Ribunal. Visit the original article at http://www.productivitybits.com/signmypad-save-time-and-money-by-ditching-your-fax-and-scanner.
This post is by Camber Weiss, Chief Culture Officer at Autriv Software Development.
We’ve all been there. It’s the eleventh hour and you have to send a form to someone with no time to spare. Usually this involves a fax machine, scanner, printer, or all 3. Not anymore.
Did you know your mobile device can do all of this for you? Don’t bother with setting up your printer, making sure it has ink, and getting your computer connected. Don’t go digging in the attic for the fax machine you haven’t used in years.
Don’t waste time trying to install the right scanner software on your computer. With a few useful apps, you can scan and fill out any from your iPad or other mobile device.
Let’s start with the getting the document onto your mobile device.
Obviously, the easiest way to do this is to upload the file directly from your computer or through email. But what happens if you have the physical document instead of a PDF file?
There are a number of scanner apps that will use your devices camera as a scanner and upload the picture as a PDF.
For this article, I looked at Page Scanner ($5.99), Scan2PDF ($6.99) and Tablet Scanner ($2.99) on my iPad. I took a picture of a fake contract I made up, and loaded it from my photo library into each of the apps.
Page Scanner let me crop the picture nicely, but the automatic contrast controls were too harsh so I left the document unfiltered.
Scan2PDF gave me the clearest PDF, but the lack of cropping and image adjustment was disappointing.
Tablet Scanner offers the most in-depth image adjustment, allowing me to sharpen the image, crop, and adjust contrast and brightness but the process of exporting the picture as a PDF was a bit confusing, although simple enough once you figure it out.
With the addition of an additional image editor, to sharpen up and crop the picture, any of these applications will do a fine job of turning your picture into a PDF. Although they don’t match the fidelity of a desktop scanner, they are certainly a viable option on the go.
To fill out and sign the form, I used SignMyPad ($3.99).
SignMyPad allows you to add check marks, text, signatures and dates to any PDF. I was able to load the PDF’s either directly from the scanner app, or from email.
Compatibility With Cloud Storage
SignMyPad also allows you to upload a PDF from any URL for compatibility with DropBox, Cloud App, and other cloud storage solutions.
SignMyPad was very straightforward, allowing me to quickly and easily add, move, and size all the elements to fill out my “contract”.
SignMyPad’s simplicity was valuable in helping me fill the form in no time. If you need to add other elements and mark up your form in more detail (i.e. highlighting, different fonts), you might want to check out iAnnotate ($9.99), which is more of an in-depth note-taking app.
However, SignMyPad has a feature included in the Pro version of the app ($19.99) that no other app on the market has. SignMyPad Pro can GPS tag and timestamp every document you sign.
When SignMyPad Pro saves a PDF file, the time, date, and GPS location are saved into the meta-data of the file. This is great for lawyers, realtors, and anyone else who ay want an extra element of validation with their digital signature. From any of these apps, the completed forms can be emailed or uploaded to DropBox.
Get Things Done On The Go!
Faxes are outdated, and printers and scanners are a hassle. These mobile solutions are a great way to save time and money and get things done on the go.
Everything worked quick and seamlessly on my iPad, and most of these apps or similar ones are available for Android. A solution like this is a must have for anyone who has to fill out forms on a regular basis.
Photo Courtesy of sayonaratokyo2011
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