Yesterday I wrote about the continued improvements in Microsoft Outlook for Android and iOS devices. While this is my default app on most of my smartphones, there is another I find even better on the Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus.
At the very end of 2016, Samsung announced the Focus app for Galaxy smartphones. Since I had returned my Note 7s, I didn't have an active Samsung phone and never even considered this application until I started browsing through the Galaxy Apps store on my S8 Plus a couple of weeks ago.
The Samsung Focus app is an incredibly valuable tool for the enterprise with a single interface that brings together tabs with a focus page, consolidated email, calendar, memos, and contacts. You can designate priority senders and with a single tap see attachments, emails, tasks, events, and memos associated with that contact. It's an awesome tool for productivity and actually keeps me using my Galaxy S8 Plus even though I want to bounce onto other phones.
The Focus tab brings together today's events and communications from the day with priority senders. When you get to the bottom of the page, the priority senders who have communications from that day appear up top so you can quickly navigate to them.
While the new Outlook for Android is rolling out with quick reply capability, Samsung Focus already has it. In addition, tap the arrow about the quick reply icon to reply all, forward, add related event, add related task, or add related memo. Does it get any better for productivity than this?
Tap on the arrow above the quick reply icon to tie in your email with even more data.
In regards to the calendar, the Samsung Focus app brings in all of the shared Google Calendars I have setup (includes Everton football, my daughters, and more) while some other calendar apps do not include all of these additional calendars. The interface for entering new appointments is particularly pleasing and useful, much more than the apps we see from manufactuers on most phones.
Samsung Focus is also designed to support direct conference calling when the number and conference call participant code is in the event somewhere. I haven't tried this yet as I use my office phone for conference calls at this time.
I haven't used my Exchange memos or tasks for a long time, but they are so well integrated into Samsung Focus I may start using them again.
In addition to seeing all associated data for a priority sender, you can quickly call, message, email, or share things with them with just a couple taps on your display.
One feature you won't find in Outlook is the ability to setup keywords in Focus. With keywords established, you will see notifications of email or calendar events with teh keyword appear on the first Focus tab.
You have the power to choose which tabs you see in Samsung Focus and how they are setup for your needs. Make sure to tap the right menu button on each tab to further customize the experience for you.