Apps and Devices Every Work On-The-Go Mom Needs

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This is a guest post by Julia Sta. Romana of Wailings of a WAHM

The thing I like most about being a work at home mom is it has given me the freedom to work at home and practically anywhere I want.

Because when you really think about it, work-at-home moms don’t really stay at home all the time to work. We run errands, shop for groceries, pick up the kids, etc. With the right tools and software you can squeeze in more work while waiting or commuting, making you more productive and freeing up more time for the family and yourself.

Having these devices and software has helped me stay on top of work every time I go out of the house. And the great thing about these devices is that they don’t break the bank and most of the apps I use are free. So here’s a comprehensive list of hardware and software I use and any Techie WAHM would need to keep work or business going even while on the go!

Let’s start with the usual combo:

Netbook. Offline or online, having a small, light netbook has allowed me to stay-up-to-date with deadlines and writing assignments. They’re cheaper than laptops, small enough to be carried in a regular sized purse and light enough that I can use it practically anywhere.

Prepaid/Postpaid Internet Stick or Wifi Hub. Not everyone has a steady internet connection you can rely on. Those who do would often charge you an arm and a leg for it. Having your own internet is cheaper and more reliable than looking for a place with WiFi connection.

This combo is great, especially if you’re already using a laptop and internet stick modem from home. But what if you are not? What if you work from a desktop or a heavy laptop and you have a DSL connection at home? How can you bring your work with you without breaking the bank?

Fortunately there is a lightweight (and cheaper) alternative that still packs that WAHM punch, and it all comes in one pretty little package: the smartphone.

Smartphones have now evolved to the point that it can basically do a lot of applications you would need to do on a netbook and more. When I’m away from home and I need to write, I have a free app that works like Microsoft office on my phone. To make things easier I have a Bluetooth keyboard with me so I’m able to type, not just text my articles and my blog. I have Google Drive and Evernote just in case I need to make notes and share documents with co-workers. I have VLC media player to watch my training videos and a free pdf reader to read documents.

In lieu of an Internet stick, I have a data plan which allows me to use the internet on my phone or to use my phone as a wi-fi when I have my laptop with me. This allows me to check and respond to emails while waiting in line to pay the groceries or update my social media accounts while I’m in a cab.

What makes a smartphone a great alternative to the usual netbook/Internet stick combo?

For one, smartphones have now gotten a lot cheaper than they used to. You don’t need to have an iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy S3 to get the job done. My smartphone comes from a local brand here in the Philippines, and it costs less than Php5,000 (roughly $120). That’s a third of the price of most low end netbooks but my phone has the capacity and the memory of a high end netbook.

If you’re looking for something more substantial than a phone you can even get a phablet (hybrid smartphone and tablet), which gives you a bigger screen without the weight of a laptop. You can get a phablet for less than P10,000 (roughly $250); you can even get it for free if you get a postpaid plan from some local telcos.

Also, getting a data plan for your phone doesn’t have to be expensive. Data plans that provide unlimited internet are now more affordable than ever; most of them even come with free phablets or smartphones. There are even phone plans where you can set limits to how much data you can consume and most smartphones come with features (and free apps) that warns you when you’re close to your limit or shuts down your data plan once you’re reached that limit.

With these tools, there’s no need for work-at-home parents to stay stuck at home in order to get the job done. With the latest tech and apps you can be a working mom on the go wherever you go!

What apps and devices do YOU use as a WAHM?

Julia Jasmine M. Sta Romana is a full time writer, work-at-home mom and VA. She’s currently a contributor for GMA News Online and a full-time VA for Onlinejobs.ph. She tries to help other work at home parents by sharing her wailings, tips, adventures and job posts atwww.wailingsofawham.com. Julia is currently based in Davao City with her husband, daughter, and a room full of stuffed toys.

Photo Credit: guccio@文房具社 via Compfight cc

Comments

  1. I like Evernote for organizing references needed for writing, but if I don’t have the luxury of time to file everything under their respective categories, I use GetPocket (used to be Read It Later). Most recently, I’ve discovered a great lifesaver called One Note. I didn’t realize its value until I had to write an eBook for a client. For time management, I use Time Doctor (the best productivity app in my book). It automatically puts you on “break” mode when there’s no mouse or keyboard activity on your computer. I seldom use Work Flowy anymore, but it’s a great organization tool if you need to keep track of a long list of tasks.

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