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Posts tagged ‘Address Book’

Apollo: Simplified Project Management

We have calendar web apps, to-do lists, address books and project management web apps. Apollo is a new web app that crosses borders and pulls these services together. It features a to-do list, calendar, sophisticated project management app and address book all on the same page.

Apollo was crafted as a modern web app. We see a high level of attention to detail both with the design and the development. New windows slide down like sheets or panels, which will make Mac users feel right at home. Double-clicking on a particular spot on your calendar springs open a window to create a meeting beginning at that time. Tasks with approaching deadlines dispatch an email reminder to your inbox, giving peace of mind knowing you’re staying on top of your priorities. As a new app, we were blown away to see the features we demand in a calendar app or to-do list app are available.

Each of the individual modules seem to be aware of one another. Your projects can be assigned to multiple people, which also appear in your Tasks, and your Tasks also appear on your calendar. Apollo helps eliminate a lot of individual web apps you may already use in order to create one, single web app to handle it all.

It’s new, but missing a few features. We didn’t see an Import function to get your data out of your existing programs and into Apollo. That means manual transcription for your contacts and calendar items, which may be too high of a barrier for users at this point. Also, features like data export and an API are in the works but not available to users. Apollo likely scaled back a few features in order to launch. We’re looking forward to seeing them added.

These objections don’t really represent a cause of concern. Apollo is refined and polished, so create a free account to see how a modern web app should behave. The service is in a private beta at the moment. Email them for an invite code, and be sure to mention Mini Sprout.

Viber: Free Calls Via Your Data Network

Forget about cellular minutes. Viber replaces your mobile’s phone app by providing free calling between other Viber users. International calls come across just as well as local calls, and there’s no charge for crossing continents. Viber pulls in all of your contacts from your address book. Friends who also use the app see the Viber badge adjacent to their name. Tap their name to connect.

What helps distinguish Viber from other services is how it transmits calls. The app runs off your data network, so users can place calls using 3G or wifi. Comparable services, like Google Voice, rely on your phone’s cellular network, which means using minutes and paying for long distance calls. If a friend does not use Viber yet, you can still call using your cellular network or send an invitation to join.

The service supports features you’d expect from a phone app, like recent and missed calls. You can also view missed calls from people who tried reaching you while your phone was off or out of signal range. Push notifications are supported too, so you don’t need to keep the app open to receive calls. SMS is coming soon.

The only thing we see missing from Viber is the ability to leave voice mails. It seems like a highly demanded feature we hope will be added as the service expands.

At the moment, Viber is available as a free download on the iPhone App Store. Android and Blackberry versions are on their way.

We scrubbed their website and privacy policy, and we cannot find any indication of how the service plans to generate revenue. Google Voice and Skype sell credits to connect over a cellular network. Viber may also follow this plan in the future, especially since it wouldn’t diminish any of their current offerings. It’s just that we don’t have any reason to believe so. Until then, enjoy the free calls.

Rainmaker: House Social Media Contacts In One Place

We all rely on the address books embedded in our phones, but we know full contact info for each of our friends is available on Facebook and Gmail. Cell phone numbers, work phone numbers and email addresses are available and updated.

The web app Rainmaker allows users to pull their contacts across social networks and create a singular address book. Sign up for the service, grant Rainmaker limited access to your Gmail, Twitter or Facebook accounts, select your friends and import them. That said, the service is completely free to try.

There are a few hoops to jump through in order to get started. For example, the process of allowing your social networking accounts to communicate with Rainmaker requires a few more clicks than ideal. We’re also not entirely sure all of the features incorporated are necessary. Plus, users are limited to 25 contacts under a free account, and then users have to purchase credits and pay $0.25 for each additional contact to add.