I use a lot of tools (products and services) in my business, my day job, and my personal life. Below is a list of the one’s I have used and can recommend.
Online Invoicing (Accounting)
I’ve been a Freshbooks customer for 4 years. Worth every penny. Create and send estiamtes with ease. See which estimates ahve been viewed, and followup with an email to checkin. Then, one click will create that estimate to an invoice. Your client has login access to an area of your account where they see just their stuff. Also super simple to connect to a bunch of online payment gateways so your clients can pay online. Get paid faster. Check out Freshbooks.
Accept Credit Card Payments (online and in person)
Stripe will integrate easily with your website (and handle PCI compliance) so you can accept all major credit cards. I recommend using Square for collecting credit card payments “face to face.” Both have zero startup fees/monthly fees, etc. Just pay per transaction.
Task management is a big deal for me. I’ve tried dozens of applications for managing my todos and have landed on two. One focuses on simplicity, the other has a few more bells and whistles if you want to have categories, due dates, etc.
Clear, by Realmac Software, is my current app of choice. iOS and Mac apps are available for Clear, so you will have your tasks with you wherever you are. Simple swiping and pinching will complete/create/delete tasks, and that’s it.
Things, created by Cultured Code, is another fantastic task management application that is available on iOS and Mac. Beautiful user interface and very simple to use. Things adds things like tags, categories, areas (of responsibilities), due dates, etc. I recommend both 🙂
Hands down, the best camera app I’ve used for the iPhone is Camera+.
I’m a heavy Gmail user for work and personal email, so Gmail on my iPhone and iPad is a must. Outside of the obvious integration with Gmail, the app is the most solid email app I’ve used.
For subscribing to new podcasts, and always having the latest episode of the shows I enjoy, I use Instacast.
Do yourself a favor, give Fantastical a look. Apps available for iOS and Mac. Super easy to use Calendar, easy to add new events (like, Coffee with stephen tomorrow at 6pm at Starbucks). Best calendar app I’ve used.
As you may have already guessed, I’m an Apple user. Current “machine” is a MacBook Pro (not retina). If you are looking for a “Pro” machine the Retina will do just fine, so too will the MacBook Air depending on your exact needs.
Currently using an iPhone 5. Zero complaints.
Tablet of choice is an iPad Mini with AT&T and Wifi (16 GB, black).