Business cards are a bit like pennies – we all accumulate them, then don’t quite know what to do with them.

A Waterloo company, Card2Contact, has devised an app that deploys real, live humans to solve this problem for BlackBerry users.

It works like this: When you take a picture of the card with your BlackBerry and upload it through the app, a manual transcription team receives the image, enters the data and sends it back to the app on your device.

At that point, you can view the information and e-mail the new contact directly from the app. Each contact can also be easily saved to the device’s BlackBerry contacts folder.

Card2Contact founder Madhu Kesavan said his app’s use of actual humans to transcribe business card data makes it far superior to those that rely on optical character recognition (OCR).

“The problem with OCR is that it behaves differently for different fonts and type sizes,” Kesavan said. “We have real people typing in the contacts, which gives us 100-per-cent accuracy.”

Turnaround time for a new contact is currently three hours maximum, but will soon be 30 minutes, Kesavan said.

The app can be downloaded free from BlackBerry App World, which includes two complimentary credits. Further credits can then be purchased (15 for $4.99; 35 for $9.99; 75 for $19.99).

For more information see the Card2Contact website, or view this demo video.

About The Author

Anthony Reinhart
Director, Editorial Strategy
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Anthony Reinhart is a veteran journalist who left the Globe and Mail to join Communitech in 2011. Tony has covered everything from crime, politics and courts to business, the arts and sports, and his writing has won numerous journalism awards. He is Communitech's Director of Editorial Strategy and senior staff writer.