As an entrepreneur, your cell phone may be one of the most important tech tools you own.
Not only does it enable clients, colleagues, and customers to reach you wherever you are, but many of today's cell phones have morphed into mini-computers that serve as digital day-timers, address books, note takers, Web surfers, e-mail readers, and digital cameras.
If you're considering an upgrade, the following is a look at eight hot "basic" cell phone models that are ideal for your business:
Get Their Number
As the first 3.2-Mega pixel camera phone in the U.S., the Samsung a990 ($349.99 on a 2-year service plan with Verizon Wireless; www.samsung.com) captures digital images and video and includes flash, zoom, and editing capabilities. Perhaps more useful for business trips and meetings, this Bluetooth-enabled phone also features a business card scanning feature and expandable postage stamp-sized MicroSD memory to store additional applications and files.
The Motorola i580 ($279.99 with Sprint Nextel; www.sprint.com) is in good shape for road warriors. Designed to meet military specs for resistance to dust, rain, and shock, this phone also offers location-based services, Bluetooth support and expandable memory via teeny TransFlash cards (sold separately) for extra file storage.
Like the company's best-selling RAZR phone, the Motorola KRZR K1 (price and carrier is TBD; www.motorola.com) features a sleek design for entrepreneurs with cell phone image concerns. But this phone also comes with useful business tools such as high-speed data access and an enhanced phonebook with fields such as IM, URL, address, and birthday. Also included: music playback, stereo Bluetooth wireless audio, a 2-Mega pixel camera, and expandable memory.
Take Them With You
The Nokia 6126 (price and carrier TBD; www.nokiausa.com) is a robust phone that allows you to keep most of your contacts close at hand, with storage for up to 1,000 contacts. This Nokia is a lightweight flip-phone with a 1.3 Mega pixel camera, integrated MP3 player an expandable MicroSD memory (up to 2GB). The Nokia 6126 also features hands-free chatting (wireless headset or speakerphone), voice recorder, two color displays and a calendar with reminders.
While not as svelte as the mega-popular Motorola RAZR flip phone, the stainless steel Nokia 8801 ($549.99 with T-Mobile; www.nokiausa.com) is stylish, but more importantly, it syncs with a PC for calendar appointments, to-do lists and contacts, and supports EDGE wireless service for near broadband download speeds. Perfect for lengthy business trips, this Bluetooth-enabled phone offers eight days of stand-by time.
Back to Basics
The Nokia 6103 (free with 2-year commitment to T-Mobile; www.nokiausa.com) is a compact GSM world phone with Bluetooth wireless technology, hands-free speakerphone, integrated camera/camcorder, and mobile Web browser. Ideal for businesspersons who rely on messaging with clients or colleagues, the clamshell handset also supports SMS, MMS, email and Nokia Xpress audio messaging which lets users record and send voice messages with the push of a button.
No walls? No wires? No worries. While not a cell phone, it can keep your phone alive: the Motorola Portable Power P790 (price TBD; www.motorola.com) is a pocket-sized battery that plugs into any Motorola cell phone's mini-USB port for power on the go. It also works to juice up your wireless Bluetooth headset. The fully-charged P790 provides one to two full battery charges for your cell phone or 10 full Bluetooth headset charges. Available in one of six colors.