Late last month Fishbowl announced the release of their new ‘Fishbowl Anywhere’ feature that allows users to access the Fishbowl desktop solution using any Web browser. Fishbowl is the maker of one of the most popular inventory add-on products that works with QuickBooks Desktop (or QuickBooks Online).
Fishbowl Anywhere isn’t a companion 3rd-party Application that works with Fishbowl, rather it is a plugin that permits connection over the internet to a Users’ Fishbowl desktop product. This means that you can remotely access Fishbowl from your laptop, tablet or smartphone anywhere you have internet capabilities using the Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari browser on your device.
Fishbowl CEO David K. Williams said, “Fishbowl Anywhere brings the robust functionality of our desktop solutions to a platform that is accessible in the cloud,” He went on to say, "Fishbowl Anywhere gives salespeople, warehouse workers, and other decision makers greater flexibility and access to all your Fishbowl features, functions, and inventory data when and where they need it."
As though connecting to Fishbowl from your laptop over the internet isn’t enough, the Fishbowl Anywhere plug-in also permits users, with the Fishbowl ‘SalesPoint’ point of sale solution running on their server to also access SalesPoint remotely. You can easily process sales via the SalesPoint access including taking credit-card payments. I can see Fishbowl SalesPoint users with large show rooms using this technology to expand their point-of-sale to the customer read to check-out rather than standing in line to do so. Not to mention the option to check-stock either in the stockroom in the back, or at another store location, or a warehouse half-way around the world.
Extending the full feature functionality of Fishbowl onto your tablet enables you to work remotely with your customer on a sales calls, Fishbowl Anywhere allows salespeople to get accurate inventory counts to ensure they have enough on hand to make good on their promises. They can also create sales orders to make sure their sales get entered into the inventory system as soon as possible.
I can see another use of Fishbowl Anywhere being the processing of product deliveries. For example if your company makes actual deliveries to a customer's business or work sites, this new functionality would allow for verifying acceptance at the delivery site. Furthermore, if a product on the order wasn’t included in the delivery, it would be easy for the user to check the ‘back-order’ and future delivery status. These are just a couple of the potential uses of Fishbowl ‘Anywhere’.
It’s simple to use too:
1) Enter the ‘web address’ of the Fishbowl server into any web browser.
2) Enter the user name and password in the Fishbowl Anywhere portal, then click Sign-in.
Fishbowl Anywhere Portal Access
3) Select either Fishbowl or Fishbowl Salespoint
Fishbowl Anywhere Portal
4) Enter your regular User credentials (Username and Password) and then click Login
Fishbowl Anywhere Client Login
Here is the Fishbowl Client "Dashboard" running under Fishbowl Anywhere and accessed via Internet Explorer from my laptop. (By the way, I was accessing from Oklahoma, a sample set of data running on Fishbowl's own servers in Utah.)
Fishbowl Anywhere Fishbowl Client Dashboard
The best part about Fishbowl Anywhere is that you have all the same features of Fishbowl that you would have if you were logged-in on your desktop. So if you have access to create Purchase Orders you can create purchase orders from Fishbowl Anywhere; if you can create Sales Orders you can create sales orders from Fishbowl Anywhere.
Here is Fishbowl SalesPoint running under Fishbowl Anywhere using Internet Explorer on my Windows Surface Pro tablet.
Fishbowl Anywhere - FB SalesPoint
Believe me, you can ring-up a sale just as easily as you can in the desktop version; and just like SalesPoint running in the native desktop environment, every transaction is processed thru Fishbowl in real-time so inventory is adjusted and kept in balance. I was also able to log-in to SalesPoint using my iPad, and comfortably processed a sale all the way through printing the receipt to my networked printer.
Speed and performance were reflective of my own internet speed. When I was on my 1-gig network from my laptop, it was fast, but I have lightning speed internet service. However, it wasn't that much slower when I was running on my Surface Pro connected over my office WIFI. Of course your speed and performance can vary with the quality of your internet, network connectivity, and hardware capabilities (at both the server and remote connections.)
Personally I think this is a great addition to the Fishbowl offerings, and I am certain it is going to 'excite' a lot of Fishbowl users who may not even be aware of it yet. For more information, including a downloadable product brochure, go to the Fishbowl Anywhere website.