Choosing a Business Smartphone

Whether you’re running your company from home or out of an office or storefront, a business smartphone can double up as an invaluable communication and productivity tool. But, choosing the right smartphone to use for your activities might not always be straightforward. Balancing your preferences and requirements is the challenge that you’ll face when looking for a device that you like and is within your budget.

Benefits of Smartphones for Business

if you’re running a small business from home, you might be successfully managing to use your personal phone for business purposes too. Perhaps you have a separate email address and app set up for managing your work emails, or a folder dedicated to all the apps that you use for running your business. However, there’s bound to come a time when this simply isn’t enough, and you need to separate your business and personal life further.

Maybe you’re tired of getting business texts and calls to your personal phone out of hours, or you’re quickly running out of storage space, and taking photos of your kids and pets isn’t possible anymore because your phone is cluttered up with product photographs to post online. These are all signs that it might be time to go one step further and invest in a dedicated smartphone for your business.

Which Network Should You Use?

Deciding which network to use should be one of the first questions that you ask when picking out a business smartphone. You should also consider whether you want to get a smartphone on a contract or look for SIM-only deals.

SIM only deals are an ideal choice if you have an old smartphone that you’re going to re-purpose as your business phone or are happy to buy a cheap handset outright without dedicating yourself to a monthly fee. Consider whether you would like a network that allows you to have a set amount of minutes, texts and data for a fixed price each month or whether it is easier for you to top up with credit and use that as you go.

Lebara offers some of the best SIM only deals in terms of value; you can get 2GB of data, 1,000 minutes and 1,000 texts for just £5 for the month. Or if you expect to be using your business smartphone heavily, you can pay just £25 for unlimited texts, minutes, and data. The best thing about Lebara SIM only deals is that you can decide which option is best for you each month; if you expect to be using less data, for example, you can opt for a cheaper bundle.

Which Smartphone Operating System is Best?

The first and most important consideration when looking for a business handset is the operating system. Before you decide on factors like screen size, processing power or camera quality, you’ll need to think about whether you prefer to use an Apple iOS, Google Android, BlackBerry or Windows Phone.

You will need to choose a mobile OS that’s a good fit for not only your needs as the user but also the needs of the organisation. For example, an iPhone is an ideal choice if your business requires you to use specific apps that aren’t available on the Google Play Store. It’s also a good idea to think about the other tech items that you use and how well you will need them to sync up with your smartphone. If you use a MacBook for business, for example, you can fully sync this with an iPhone to get your notifications on both and even automatically save documents, photos, and more in the cloud so that they can be easily accessed on each device.

  • Android: This is the most popular operating system choice for business smartphones and there are several options to choose from. Samsung, HTC, Google Phones, and Huawei devices are popular choices. This platform tends to allow for more software customisation by the user compared to others, and the Google Play store has the second largest number of apps available.
  • Apple iOS: Another popular option, iOS is solely used by Apple devices, and Apple has exclusive control over its hardware and software, unlike Android. iOS can also be more restrictive when it comes to user customisation, so consider whether or not this is important for you. You can find the largest number of apps available on the Apple App Store.
  • BlackBerry: For a while, BlackBerry was the standard business smartphone, but today it falls behind Apple and Android. However, their main app store offers 250,000 apps, and several models still have physical keypads, which some users prefer.
  • Windows Phone: The least popular of the four mobile operating systems, Windows Phone is available from different hardware vendors, but falls behind the other options in terms of the number of apps available.

What Size Smartphone Should You Choose?

Once you’ve decided on the operating system that you want, you should consider the size of the device that you need. If you’re only planning on using your business smartphone for managing emails, setting reminders, and answering business calls, huge screen size is probably unlikely to be a big priority for you and you will probably be fine with a small-to-medium smartphone that fits somewhere within the 4-5” range. On the other hand, if you want something bigger, or want your phone to double up as a tablet, go for a bigger size; 5 inches or larger is known as a ‘phablet’ and they’re usually too big to use with one hand or fit in your small pocket, so consider the convenience side of things too.

Tech Specs to Think About

Hardware specifications don’t always factor into the decision if you’re buying a smartphone for everyday use, but it’s worth considering the following when choosing a business handset:

Processor: Consider how well you want your smartphone to perform; will you need to be running a lot of apps at the same time or using apps that require a lot of processing power, such as design apps? If that’s the case, then it’s worth spending some extra time focusing on the CPU of your smartphone choices. iPhones with dual-core processors often perform just as well as some quad-core smartphones, but if you are opting for an Android or Windows smartphone, it’s’ worth looking for a device with a quad-core processor for the best performance.

Battery Life: How long you can expect the battery on your device to last is extremely important; the last thing that you want is to be constantly hunting for a charger because your smartphone is running out of juice. If you have an older smartphone that you’re looking to repurpose as your business phone, it’s worth looking into the option of getting a replacement battery if the battery life has begun to dwindle. Along with looking for a handset with long battery life, if you’re expecting to use it heavily, consider portable charging methods like a charging case.

Storage Space: Some popular business phone models, like iPhones and certain Android handsets, only come with built-in storage and no expandable memory. If you are opting for an iPhone and want to expand the memory, the best option is to sign up for iCloud where you can purchase cloud storage. On the other hand, most Android, Windows, and BlackBerry smartphones will give you the option to use an external memory card.

There are many considerations to make when choosing your business smartphone, to ensure that it fits your requirements and that of your company.