Syncing Apple iCal with Google Calendar

June 24, 2011

Now that I’m back to using my Palm Pixi smartphone, I’ve got to re-evaluate my personal and work calendar syncing options. I’ve got my Apple iMac (running the iCal app), my Palm PIxi smartphone, and two different calendars to sync (along with my contacts). So, what’s the best solution?

After exploring several different options, it seems my best solution is  product called SpanningSync for the Mac. This app runs in the background on my iMac system and periodically syncs my personal and work calendars in the Apple iCal app with two different calendars in Google Calendar in the cloud, of which my Palm Pixi has the ability to sync with. What’s nice about SpanningSync is that I can control which specific calendar in Apple iCal will sync with which specific Google calendar. I’ve setup 2-way syncing, so wherever I make an addition, deletion, or change all the calendars are updated. SpanningSync also will sync my contacts between Apple Address Book and Google Contacts, and subsequently the contacts on my Palm Pixi.

This system works surprising well. I’m currently running the 15-day trial version, but if all continues to go well I’ll pay for the $25/year subscription.

iPhone no more!

June 24, 2011

I recently resigned with the company I was working for and had to return my company-owned iPhone 4. So, I’m now back to using my old Palm Pixi (WebOS) smartphone on the Sprint network.  After using the iPhone 4 for the last several months, I’ve really grown accustom to the great apps (a lot of them missing from the Palm Pixi). In addition, I really loved the virtual keyboard of the iPhone 4, especially the auto text correction. My Pixi has the physical keyboard, and it’s a pain to click away on those bubble keys compared to the iPhone.

Sure, I could always run out and buy my own iPhone 4, but I won’t for these reasons:

  1. The iPhone has some great apps, but the phone itself isn’t the greatest. On the Verizon network I often dropped calls for absolutely no reason.
  2. The Verizon Navigator app wasn’t very good compared to the Sprint Navigator on my Palm Pixi. The Verizon app would often take me to the wrong location or would simply give up on an address and close down.
  3. Although the iPhone 4 had great battery life, it is pretty heavy and somewhat fragile with glass on the top and bottom surfaces.
  4. Verizon has expensive cell and data plans compared to Sprint.

As such, I’ve decided to possibly get an Android phone on the Sprint network. Sprint has better voice/data plans and their service seems to work better in my area. The two current candidates for phones are the Samsung Nexus S and the Samsung Galaxy S II. The Nexus S seems to be a really fast phone but there are lots of reports of weak and bad radios for phone reception. Unless this can be fixed soon (either via hardware or software), I’m afraid I’ll need to exclude the Nexus S from my consideration list.

That leaves the Galaxy S II ( named “Within” for Sprint) which is rumored to be released sometime at the end of July. The specs on the GS II look great, so I’ll have to hold out with my Palm Pixi until later next month and read the reviews on the Sprint version of the GS II. Hopefully it will be good, and I can replace my aged Palm Pixi with a faster, more modern Android smartphone.