Developer: ABBYY
Price: $9.99
Version Reviewed: 3.0

iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★½☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★½
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

For the traveling businessman, or a person who makes a ton of contacts on a daily basis, having a solid business card reader is essential. Business card readers are not all one and the same though, as they all have different features and levels of proficiency.

ABBYY is a standard business card reader that instantly extrapolates information from business cards. With your iPhone 4, 3GS, or 3G with a Clarifi case, you just line up the card under the iPhone camera in some good lighting and snap. In about 5-10 seconds, all of the information is neatly assembled into a screen that you can edit.

ABBYY does work well, but it’s certainly not 100% accurate. I found in my use that cards with neatly written and spaced vertical information worked a bit better than cards with scrunched together horizontal formatting. The better organized the card is, the better the app will work.

The app did have some occasional naming glitches, as well as a recurring issue of having the street number being used in place of the zip code, but for the most part the app was serviceable. On any given card I’d say that 75% of the information was correct, and each item that the app thinks it misses it highlights. Along with basic card reading, the app also integrates with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn automatically, making people finding a breeze.

The inclusion of social networking and the built in error detection make ABBYY nice to use, but its card reading accuracy isn’t exactly eye popping. The app gets phone numbers and names down almost every time, but everything else is a bit suspect. If you are a power user, you’d probably be better off using a service that provides hand checking for mass amounts of cards, but the casual user would do just fine using ABBYY.

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