April 19, 2011
Expat Kiwi developer Nic Wise is a smart guy who’s also something of a tinkerer. One of the projects that benefitted from his tinkering is mobileAgent, a lovely little application that give iOS users the ability to do a bunch of their accounting work while on the road (so long as they use accounting software FreeAgent). It’s been a few months since mobileAgent was released, and the latest version has some nice touches that include the ability for users to snap a picture of a receipt and upload it alongside their expense claim so that there is always the actual data next to the expense entry it relates to.
I’ve long said that a contextual approach towards mobile apps is best – expose the functionality that makes sense (expenses, time billing, reporting) but hide the stuff that no one is likely to do in a mobile situation (journal entries anyone?). To this end, with mobileAgent users can:
- Create timeslips: Either by adding a new task to a project, or logging time against an existing task. Add comments to your timeslips so you can recall what you did on the day.
- Log mileage: Handles all allowed forms of transport (car, motorcycle, bicycle), so you can reclaim and rebill your mileage.
- Enter expenses: Just paid for lunch? No need to remember to do it when you get back to the office – log the expense into FreeAgent at the table.
- Attach a photo of the expense when you enter it. No more keeping receipts and scanning them “later”.
- Enter items while you’re offline: Enter things when you remember – even while underground or on a plane. Sync back to FreeAgent next time you’re connected.
mobileAgent is available on the App Store for a paltry £2.39.
Of course this is even more interesting now that rival company Xero has announced its own mobile application. It’ll be really interesting to compare and contrast the two approaches towards building a mobile accounting interface.