This week we preview Apple’s new MacBook portables, CRM software and peer-to-peer collaboration software for business.
What is it? Portable computer range
How much? Starts at €1,119 including Vat (RRP)
Apple claims its new MacBook portables are up to 25pc faster than previous versions as they run Intel Core 2 Duo Processors under the hood.
The new line-up includes three models: 1.83GHz and 2.0GHz MacBook models that come in white and a black 2.0GHz MacBook.
All are available in a number of configuration options such as higher-capacity hard drives, more memory or additional software.
The slim devices are 1-inch thin and have a 13-inch widescreen display, with a built-in video camera for recording movies, taking photos or videoconferencing.
Each device has a power adapter that magnetically connects the power cord to the notebook and disconnects easily if strained so that if someone trips on the wire the laptop isn’t sent tumbling to the ground.
What is it? CRM software
How much? Free 21-day trial
Any company that want to improve service and increase sales can take a free 21-day trial of customer relationship management (CRM).
Galway-based StromaSoft has developed CRM software and its latest version includes sales force automation (SFA) and customer support ticket modules.
The company let people trial the software by downloading it from its website www.stromasoft.com.
The tool also includes modules that cover sales and marketing, lead management, activity reports with a reminder function for follow-up actions.
It lets business managers check the progress of marketing campaigns, evaluate the sales pipeline and even raise sales orders, purchase orders or invoices.
Ultimately it’s aimed at preventing sales leads from falling through the cracks as well as letting companies see opportunities to cross-sell and up-sell more products to existing customers.
What is it? Peer-to-peer collaboration software
How much? Free, with customer support and upgrades
Who said peer-to-peer file sharing was just for consumers?
Small businesses or sole traders who can’t afford expensive virtual private network technology can download a free tool to let them communicate and share documents securely via the web.
OnShare, available from www.onshare.com, lets people see and share files from a colleague’s computer as if they were on their own PC.
The user controls what they share and with whom, unlike other services that share all or nothing.
This ensures that files come from a trusted source, reducing the risks of spyware, viruses or unwanted content. Any data being sent is encrypted for extra security.
OnShare also includes a secure chat facility that works like instant messaging.
By Gordon Smith
Pictured — Apple MacBook portables