01 December 2010

I love my new iPhone

So my husband and I recently bought new cell phones and we decided on getting the iPhone 3GS (because it is $100 cheaper than the new iPhone 4). I really wanted it because of the apps, especially the ones that could be used for genealogy. 

The first app I added (after Facebook) was the Ancestry.com Tree to Go. You can take pictures from your phone and add them directly to the tree. The photos that you've already added to your tree via the internet come out very clear on the phone as well. It shows events and research notes as well. My main use for this will be for reference if I'm out and about and the opportunity to do some research presents itself. It's also good for research trips so that I don't have to lug around my laptop. The downside is that you are not able to review your sources, such as census records. Ancestry.com does not have regular iPhone app either so that you can do searches on your phone. You can always go through the internet browser (Safari) though. I don't see myself doing a whole lot of research on it because it is a small screen. It is more for convenience sake and it's pretty neat since the app is free.

The other genealogy specific app I installed was the Families by TelGen Limited. It is specifically set up for a family tree from the Legacy Genealogy Software. I had to download a sync program to my computer, but once I did that it was very quickly added to my phone. My entire family tree at my fingertips! The photos looked great, but the most exciting thing was that all my sources, including images, were available! I was able to look directly at the birth certificates and other records added to my tree right on my cell phone! You can edit and make changes to the tree on your phone, including adding media, and it will sync back with the tree on your PC. Love it! This one was not free. It was $14.99 + tax, but it was worth every penny!

Two other apps I added that can be used for genealogy purposes were Evernote and an app called CamScanner. Both of these are free so that is a bonus. The CamScanner has a full version that you can buy, but right now I have only started using the "light" version. It basically turns your phone into a scanner. You take a picture of something (i.e. a document or a photo). It scans the image and you can either email it to yourself or upload it to Dropbox.com, Google Docs, or even Evernote. It has a couple of other options to upload to as well and the full version may have more. This is perfect for those family members who won't let you leave with photos. It would also be great for scanning documents in a library. I tested it on a photocopy I took of a book in a library. It came out great! 

I'm all set with all these tools to make researching easier... now I just need some extra time to do some research! Where's the app for that?

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