The Tech Moves

[Tech News] 8 Super-Smart Travel Apps, Tips, and Innovations for Staying Connected

1. Use localized networking apps

One of the keys to staying connected when you travel on business is using apps that look for business contacts in your area. One app is called Friendable. It’s designed for ad hoc meetups, so if you are at a conference, you can quickly scan the area to search for other users.

2. Use Skype for quick group chats

Skype recently removed some of the limits for group chats. You can now chat with up to 25 people for free using the mobile app. If you only have a laptop available, you can use the new Web version for quick meetings and skip the desktop app.

3. Pick a hotel with ubiquitous Wi-Fi

To stay connected at all times, make sure the hotel has Wi-Fi in every square inch of the property. Lauren Larsen, the Director of Sales at Palms Casino Resort, told me recently that the property has access in every public area, including the pools, lounges, and casino. Many hotels only offer access in the lobby, pool area, and your room. Ask for specifics before you ever book the room.

4. Chat privately and securely

A new app called Cyber Dust lets you send private, secure messages that disappear after they are read by your recipient. You can’t even take a screenshot without the sender knowing. It helps you get a bit more personal over a messaging app without fear that what you type will be saved or hacked.

5. Make quick conference calls

Too many conference calling apps and services require a complicated setup.MeetUpCall makes it far easier, because you just set the meeting and invite people by email. Because of how fast and easy the app makes group calling, it means you might try to do them more often.

6. Watch out for wireless density problems

Staying connected requires good, reliable access, but that’s not always possible at a popular hotel. Too many users can overload the Wi-Fi signal, which is why you might get dropouts or won’t even be able to connect. To combat this, some hotels–most notably the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas–use high-density wireless access even for thousands of users.

7. Manage your contacts like a pro

Managing contacts can be a headache, but the 6 Degrees app makes it less painful. Instead of constantly managing your contacts, the app pulls in data and lets you know when a contact makes a change. The app lets you search for and manage new and existing contacts.

8. Ask about USB connections

One thing I’ve noticed recently is that some hotels tend to provide USB outlets in public areas and in the room, but others are not up to speed yet. The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, for example, has them all over the place, especially in the rooms for easy charging. They help because you don’t have to bring along an extra charger and look for outlets.


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