Despite how much recent technology advancements have cut down on the need for paper consumption, there is one piece of analog correspondence that not one tech company has gotten quite right yet.
That would be the business card.
Now, two of the most popular tech services of the moment are teaming up to take another stab at digitizing the tried-and-true method of handing out one's professional contact information with complete ease in less than a second.
If there are any companies that could accomplish what has come to be a virtually impossible task, one might bet that LinkedIn with its online rolodex of a social network and digital notetaking app maker Evernote could be the golden ticket.
After all, LinkedIn comes with contact data, references, and content attached to more than 300 million professionals worldwide. As of last September, Evernote's user base stood at more than 75 million across 16 countries.
The two Silicon Valley-based firms are combining their strengths.
The Evernote-LinkedIn approach to business cards doesn't quite eliminate paper altogether, but it could make storing the content on business cards much simpler as well as accessible for future reference.
To get started, users just put a business card on a flat contrasting surface and then frame the card within the Business Card camera mode of the Evernote app. Evernote instantly digitizes and records the card, making it searchable within both Evernote and LinkedIn.
Evernote users can connect their accounts with LinkedIn to get a free year of business card scanning alone, which will become a standard Evernote Premium feature.
To connect an Evernote account with LinkedIn, a user only has to snap a photo of a business card with an iPhone or iPad, and will be prompted to link accounts.
The process operates much like Evernote's collaborations with 3M's Post-It notes and iconic notebook maker Moleskine, in which the camera function of Evernote apps can digitize select pieces of texts available for searching and sharing on the cloud-based platform.
As a security measure, Evernote reps asserted that all of this is done "mechanically, meaning 'no human beings'" actually look at the data on these cards.
Rolling out today, the Evernote Business Card Camera will first be available via the Evernote for iPhone and iPad apps with the promise of Android support soon. Business card scanning is also supported by the latest version of Evernote for Mac and Windows Desktop when using the ScanSnap Evernote Edition Scanner.
Images via Evernote