Last year, I tested out Google’s suite of online products to see if I could be more productive with “cloud computing”. Specifically, I tried to integrate my email, calendar, and documents into Google’s system. As it turned out, I was unsuccessful since most of my daily business activities revolved around Microsoft Exchange on my company’s server. The only Google piece which I had marginal success was with Google Docs, particularly viewing doc files using my mobile Smartphone device (inside a web browser). Ultimately, I didn’t utilize Google Docs very much since I didn’t like Google’s web desktop interface for adding or editing document files online. It just seemed a bit too confusing and cumbersome for me.
Now that the year 2009 has rolled around, I’ve decided to try once again with the online document storage and access (especially since I’ll be getting a Netbook soon). Google Docs still looks the same as it did last year, so I began to investigate other similar online services. One service that I happened upon is called Zoho, which looks very promising. If you visit the http://www.zoho.com web site, you’ll see that they offer numerous online services for both personal and business use. Like with the Google suite of products, Zoho offers most of their services free of charge with 1 GB of storage space.
What I really like about Zoho is the clean web interface for creating document files, and organizing them into separate folders.You can also upload MS-Word, Excel, and PDF files easily into the Zoho document control system, and view/edit them online.
So, I began uploading and creating documents that I plan to access online during my business travels. The only major caveat that I found, is that I can’t view my documents using my Motorola Q Windows Mobile 5 smartphone (which is the whole purpose of this exercise). When I try to visit mobile.zoho.com in Pocket Internet Explorer on my smartphone, all I get is a non-functional blank page. I posted a message on the Zoho forums asking about this, and I’m currently waiting for a response. I have a feeling that Zoho is still relatively new, so they are still working out the kinks.
Even still, I do recommend you check out this service if you’re planning to do any online document editing, storage, and management (especially since it’s free!).