Australian IT firm develops software application for iPhone

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Australian IT firm develops software application for iPhone

Despite Apple not bringing the iPhone to Australia for another 18 months, one Australian software developer is determined to cash in on the iPhone phenomenon as early as possible.

Canberra-based software development firm Furnishing Industry Software House has launched ‘Quote Sheet for iPhone’, a web application designed specifically for Apple's iPhone and iPod Touch mobile devices.

'Quote Sheet for iPhone' is a customisable business quotation, scheduling and customer management software product designed for small and medium businesses, such as tradespeople, repairers, installers and on-site technicians.

Furnishing Industry Software House’s company director, James Hodge said, the software provides workflow for managing the quotation process, from recording customer details and scheduling appointments to providing pricing options and compiling a detailed quotation.

“Users can even email a professionally formatted quotation complete with company letterhead and logo directly from their iPhone, as well as providing customers with a secure site where they can view and modify their own quotes online,” he said.

Despite the fact that the iPhone has not yet been launched for sale in Australia, Furnishing Industry Software House is no stranger to developing software for the highly popular device, with the company releasing its first iPhone application, a live web-cam viewer, within weeks of the iPhone's launch in the US, said Hodge.

According to Hodge the coming months are an opportunity for the company to further capitalise on the success of the iPhone in overseas markets as well as working with Australian companies to prepare for the device's local launch.

"As it appears to us that Apple is likely to launch the iPhone in Australia in the next 18 months, and having seen the way the iPhone has revolutionised how people interact with businesses and friends online, it makes sense for local companies to start planning ahead to develop ways in which they can leverage the iPhone to better interact with their customers. There certainly is no need for Australian companies to get left behind by not being ready for the iPhone when it is launched locally," claimed Hodge.

He is also hoping that the iPhone's growing popularity will help with the company's expansion over the next 12 months, with plans to move into larger office space and take on additional staff to help meet the growing demand for applications catering specifically for iPhone users.

"We are also looking at ways to leverage our product base and experience with the iPhone platform through partnerships with other local firms, whether with established software houses looking for new target markets or with businesses looking to the iPhone as a new way of communicating with their existing customer base" Hodge said.

In the mean time, the US-centric nature of the company's customer base is keeping Hodge and his staff very busy.

"With our differing time zones it has certainly proven to be a challenge building and supporting products for customers mainly residing in the US, but in a way our location is an advantage as we can spend the Australian day working on the technologies and the US day working with our customers providing support and assistance," he said.

However the company is looking forward to working with some Australian clients on Australian hours, building local products and services so we are ready when the iPhone arrives down-under, said Hodge.

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