Business cards may appear old hat but they are still very much the defacto option for passing on contact details. After a CES, CeBIT or IFA event I will have hundreds of the blighters all of which need recording. Perhaps you are the organised type who religiously inputs business card contact details into your address [...]
Business cards may appear old hat but they are still very much the defacto option for passing on contact details.
After a CES, CeBIT or IFA event I will have hundreds of the blighters all of which need recording.
Perhaps you are the organised type who religiously inputs business card contact details into your address book or maybe you are like me and carefully store all the business cards you gather in various drawers, briefcases and laptop bags!
Whichever ‘type’ you are, the WorldCard Mobile app from PenPowerInc may prove to be very useful indeed.
With this iPhone app you can snap a photo of a business card using the iPhone camera and it will then use OCR technology to locate and identify the key information and then export them to your address book.
Or at least that is the promise…..
In practice I found it was never 100% successful. Understandably, the type of business card had a huge bearing on the success rate. In many cases there were so many errors that it would have been far quicker to manually input the information myself.
Where information was recognised and converted successfully it was correctly linked with the right contact fields. However, all too often information was not recognised correctly and the result was gobbledygook. For testing I was using an iPhone 4 whose camera one would hope was up to the job of producing a clear crisp photo.
Business cards with fancy backgrounds, clever design themes or unusual layouts would confuse the app. The simpler the card, the better the results.
On the plus side, using the app was simplicity itself. An on screen guide shows you how to position the business card (with both portrait and landscape formats supported) and you can further assist the app by defining which areas of the card contain text that needs to be converted. The end result can be edited before export.
One other nice feature is the ability to capture information from an email signature for import, this worked very well.
If the app was more successful at actually scanning cards then it could be a real time saver. The user interface is clear and simple. Let’s hope that PenPowerInc can work on the OCR issues for a future update.
At £3.49 our advice is that you try the free LITE version to see if it works for you before you commit to buying.