Developer: RingYa Ltd.
Price: free Download on the App Store
Anymore whenever I hear “there’s an app for that,” it’s pretty much a rhetorical response to some bizarre request or wish rather than referencing an actual app that serves a legitimate purpose and makes life simpler – an app like Ringya – Reach Beyond your Contacts. I admit, when I first looked at Ringya and its claim to be able to create a group contact list from a piece of paper hanging on my bulletin board or refrigerator, I was skeptical. After giving Ringya a try, I went from skeptical to impressed. As far as keeping various group contacts organized and offering a way to create them with practically no effort, Ringya is right on.
Sure, you can use any number of a few apps that manage group contacts that are manually created (or selectively imported from your current contacts list) – and Ringya does this too. It also allows for imports of digital contact lists from computer files, such as Word documents. But the coolest part of Ringya is that you can take a picture of a paper list and the app will create a ring (group) of contact information for all the members.
What this means is you can snap a photo of a list of your kid’s T-ball roster, your co-workers, the preschool class, PTA and cub scout pack and Ringya will make a group contact list. Obviously, the information has to be compiled and visible on the list to begin with (names with phone numbers and extensions, etc.), but Ringya does a remarkable job of importing the information and organizing it into a group contact list. It doesn’t happen instantly, but only takes a short amount of time and saves the user plenty of time and effort.
Once you’ve created rings, you can choose options such as group message, group email, or can select any individual in the group and reach them by whatever contact means you have available. And once you’ve created a ring, you can add additional information to any contact within the group. You can also add contacts to the group or delete existing ones. So if you’ve got a group whose members frequently change, Ringya has got you covered. Contact options for an entire group include messaging and emailing, while individuals in the list can also be called. Ringya can only import the information it has available, so keep in mind that any information not included on the original document will have to be added manually after the group list is created.
If you’re looking for a way to manage contact information for multiple groups, Ringya will deliver. It even makes use of contextual caller ID, so if a number from one of your “rings” calls you, it will put the caller into context for you – helping you further manage your time. All in all, Ringya is a pretty impressive app that does more and functions better than you’d ever expect for free.