We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,258 News Articles

App Spotlight: Ringya turns printed contact lists into smartphone contact lists

This freebie for Android and iOS helps you organize contact groups send batch emails or texts to those groups.

Possible slogans for Ringya, a new contact-management app for Android and iOS:

"If you like it then you shoulda put a Ringya on it."

"One Ringya to rule them all."

"The postman only Ringyas once."

All terrible, I know, but they'll make a little more sense once you learn how Ringya works. This free app is designed to turn printed contact lists into smartphone contact lists. And it does so through the magic of photography.

Suppose, for example, your old-school boss hands out a printed table of all the members of the sales team. Or a list of all the department managers.

Typically you'd have to enter those contacts into your smartphone by hand -- not a fun task. With Ringya, you simply snap a photo of any printed contact list; the app converts it into an address book -- a "ring," if you will, but really just a group.

Those rings can be shared with other users, and if the sharer adds or updates a contact, it automatically gets distributed to other "ring-holders."

Likewise, if you share a ring with someone who's not yet a Ringya user, that person receives a personalized text message with a link for downloading the app. (It was initially an iOS-only offering, but Ringya just introduced an Android version.)

Ringya also lets you send a text message or email to some or all members of a ring, a great way to blast out news or requests to teams, colleagues, or even important customers.

Plus, the app offers something called contextual caller ID, meaning when someone from one of your rings calls you, the app flashes extra information about that caller -- like, say, his or her title.

Although Ringya doesn't integrate with your existing address book, it can copy contacts from it. You can also import names and numbers from a digital list, one stored in a PDF, Word or Excel file, or the like.

Based on my quick tests, Ringya rocks. It incorporates a simple, attractive interface, and it makes group contact management a breeze. I'm rather surprised the app is free, without so much as a premium option. Maybe that's coming, but for now I think many a business user can make very good use of this tool.

And speaking of handy contact-related apps, be sure to check out CallApp for Android and MailShot 2.0 for iOS.

IDG UK Sites

Best January sales 2015 UK tech deals LIVE: Best New Year bargains and savings on phones, tablets,...

IDG UK Sites

Chromebooks: ready for the prime time (but not for everybody)

IDG UK Sites

Best Photoshop Tutorials 2014: 10 inspiring step-by-step guides to creating amazing art,...

IDG UK Sites

Apple TV expert tips: get US Apple TV content, watch Google Play, use multiple Apple IDs and more