Best Smartphone Apps for Attorneys

If you make the most of your smartphone, it can make you look smart when you least expect it. Hopefully, you are using your fancy phone for more than sending e-mails and making phone calls.

If you are not, here are some of the apps that I recommend.

View your files on the go with Dropbox

Notably, this app is only useful if you store all of your files in Dropbox. The app itself is pretty awesome and is available for both iPhone and Android users.

The mobile app can view PDF and MS Word files (sadly, not Open Office). This comes in handy more than you think. I tend to forget what courtroom I am going to. Whenever that happens, I just pull up the pleading PDF and end up in the right place. It is also useful for pulling up files when meeting with clients outside of the office.

I also like the added security of the Dropbox app. You can require a password to access the app. Even better, you can have Dropbox erase all data after 10 failed attempts. These are great secondary security features for a smartphone.

Use Tasker to look smart

Tasker is only for Android sadly, but hopefully someone will develop something similar for the iPhone. Tasker lets you program your phone to do all sorts of stuff based on location or orientation.

For example, when you are in the courthouse (and your GPS is on), Tasker will automatically turn off your ringer. Or, when you stick your phone in a vertical position (like a suit pocket), Tasker will keep things silent. Very cool.

Edit docs while on the move

You can edit both Google Docs and MS Office docs from your smartphone. Although writing a brief on your phone is ill-advised, making minor edits is not.

Editing docs on the go can save you lots of time and makes working on the move incredibly easy. Even if you only use it a couple times a year, it is much better to be prepared for the unexpected.

(Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/liewcf/3547134847/)

  • http://jrwilliamslaw.com/ Josh Williams

    Dropbox app is great, and is also available for Blackberry.

  • http://constructionlawva.com Christopher G. Hill

    Couple Dropbox blackberry with Documents to Go and you’re off and running

  • Clayton Hasbrook

    Has anyone ever heard of problems with Dropbox? I haven’t, it just works. I don’t think you can edit documents from the mobile apps though.

    Sugarsync has an iPhone app as well. The only benefit I’ve seen with Sugarsync over Dropbox is that, within the web browser on a pc, documents can be edited without having to download the document and then reupload it. Of course, if it’s your own computer you’ll have the desktop folder there anyway.

    Jott is a really handy app as well.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Nope, I’ve never heard of a problem with Dropbox. It just works, and it works very well.

  • http://cobernlaw.com/ John Cobern

    Dropbox works great. I use it on iphone, Ipad, and laptop. I have more than one office and I find it extremely useful.

  • http://feeds2.feedburner.com/caveatemptorblog/rss Randall Ryder

    For Dropbox users, it might be worth reading through the comments on this post and giving some thought to the encryption issue.

    http://lawyerist.com/going-paperless-makes-it-easy-to-backup-files/

    • http://arklawyers.com/ Arkansas Lawyer

      I don’t share my Dropbox. If someone hacks it, then that’s a crime…not on me.

  • http://www.attorneyguide.com CJ

    Has anyone heard of VXLegalTracker for smartphones? It’s an app you download and it allows you to keep track of the phone calls that you get to your cell from clients. You’re able to assign the minutes of the call to a client and then a matter code. The time is then sent over to your billing software so you never miss a billable minute. I’ve been using it for a while now and love it.