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Communication

There are billions and billions of emails sent every single day and, while most of them are nothing more than lousy attempts at attempting to get access to our banking information, it’s still the most popular form of communication used today. If you’ve recently received an order confirmation from an online retailer or a weekly newsletter from your favourite coffee shop, it’s likely to have been very well designed and, in some cases, easy to read on a mobile device.

With Mail Designer Pro, it’s now possible to design great-looking email templates on your Mac that actually look really good and will work across many devices. While a little costly, the benefits and savings it provides make this an attractive alternative to dedicated design studios when it comes to jazzing up your email newsletters.

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Phone calls — the original electronic communications, after the telegraph anyhow — are still an important part of life today. We might take our calls on pocket-sized supercomputers, but they’re still phone calls. And there’s nothing more annoying than having to break out of your work to reach in your pocket and take a phone call. Plus, if you want to call someone whose number you found online, it’s annoying you can’t just copy the number and call it directly without using having money in Skype.

That’s all changed, now, with the new app Dialogue. Rather than routing all of your calls over the internet, it lets you use your phone — any phone with Bluetooth 2.0 or newer, not just an iPhone — directly through your Mac. Here’s how. (more…)

Way back in 2009, when Mac.AppStorm was in its infancy, we reviewed Daylite, a really easy way to manage your business using just one app — and it impressed us. We really loved the range of features, different business areas present within the app and the tight e-mail integration.

Since then, though, a lot has changed with Daylite so let’s take a look at the fourth version to see if it is still as good as we remember it to be.

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As any business owner will tell you, keeping track of your sales leads is one of the most important ways to sustain revenue. Yet this really is no easy task and requires an awful lot of maintenance and reporting, especially when the company is quite large. One company I worked for in Germany kept track of everything through a giant Excel spreadsheet, and keeping this up-to-date was an absolute nightmare, especially as only one person could view and edit it at any one moment in time (and yes, I did get shouted at quite a lot for not maintaining it!).

However Close.io, from developers Elastic Inc, believes it can change this. In short, it has a simple vision:

Never again should a great company fail because of a lack of sales.

Close.io may not be the cheapest offering on the market (plans start from $59 per user monthly) but if it helps a company keep track of all its sales targets, then I think this is a small price to pay for such a useful service. Let’s dive straight in and see what it has to offer.

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Since 2004, I’ve used Skype for free calls and instant messaging between friends, clients, and loved ones abroad. And because of brand loyalty, it took a while till I was convinced to try other communication apps, particularly mobile-based VoIP software like WhatsApp and Viber.

Between the two, I leaned towards Viber for its smooth user interface, the fact that it’s free to use with no ads lurking around, and how it works similarly to the way we’d call or SMS everyday. Unlike Skype’s mobile app, using Viber is like using a phone bumped with free calls and texts forever. And with over 200 million users and counting, it’s certainly becoming a strong contender against big names like Skype.

Well, that impression didn’t take long to seed as Viber announced its release of desktop versions (OS X and Windows) of the mobile app, both of which bring its best features to the desktop, along with video calling (still in beta) and call transfers from desktop to mobile. With this, Viber has taken another big step to becoming a potential alternative to Skype and many other desktop VoIP software. (more…)

Managing a team of people, often from around the world, is no easy task. But these days, it’s become a reality for many. To help with this problem, group chat tools like Campfire or Hipchat have become popular options, but they’re not without their limitations. Namely, there’s a lack of good applications that interface with them.

Into that void, the developers of Kickoff stepped in to create a Mac and iOS app with the intention to give teams an elegant solution to their collaboration problems that goes beyond basic group chat. So, could Kickoff change the way your team works? Read on and find out! (more…)

App.net is a new social network that’s initial approach as a real-time platform offers a similar experience to Twitter. After the blue bird’s latest announcements regarding 3rd party apps, App.net has turned out to be the new favorite spot for people who appreciate the development of applications and Kiwi is the new kid on the block.

If you’ve got that dejà vu feeling, you must know that Kiwi is also the previous product from the same developers. After Twitter slammed the door on third-party developers, the creators of Kiwi simply packed their things and moved along. Kiwi for Twitter has been unsupported since then and its developers joined a new adventure.

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After Sparrow dropped its steady development, many users included a new item to their wish lists: a replacement to the dear mail client. The spotlight was turned onto projects that pledge to revolutionize the way we work through our inbox, using existing apps or brand-new apps. However, revolutions take time.

Airmail is a mail client that retains the simplicity which made Sparrow such a appreciated application. Because, sometimes stripping a resource to the bone is the real shake-up we need.

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The best and worst thing about Gmail is that it’s web-based. Keeping a browser tab open for it is both convenient and annoying. You can set it up with your desktop mail client of choice, of course, but that comes with its own baggage and issues. I like the idea of something in between the two — an app that I can install on my computer that isn’t overloaded with features I don’t use and segregated from my web browsing. MailPop Pro is just the ticket.

It lives in your menubar, is instantly accessible at all times, and improves upon the Gmail web app in a multitude of ways (with one big caveat). Let’s dive in. (more…)

If your day looks anything like mine, you probably spend a fair amount of time requiring some sort of time-sensitive response. Perhaps you need a file for work, an rsvp for an invitation or any myriad of responses. The problem, of course, is that once you hit send it’s qutie easy to forget about the message. An app to track replies to the message, then, is a great idea – and that’s where RSVP comes in.

RSVP is a unique Mac app. It integrates with Apple’s mail app via a menu-bar application and allows you to set reminders. The reminders track any responses to an email within a given time-frame, and send you a reminder at the end of the time frame if no one has responded to the message. It’s a simple app, but quite an ingenious idea. Stick with me after the jump to learn more about how the app works and what I thought of it.

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