Google quietly launched a useful bit of software over Christmas with Google Mobile. Basically, it will not only load Google apps like News, Picasa Documents, and Maps on to your mobile device but will also sync GMail and Calendar.
For me this couldn’t have come at a better time. I have a Blackberry and have been running into a lot of trouble trying to sync with iCal on my Mac. The excellent free PocketMac usually does the trick beautifully but my iCal has been crashing continually and, despairing of a fix, I started using Google Calendar as an alternative. Google Calendar is great and as I use GMail almost exclusively these days and iGoogle is my home page, it all tied in pretty well. The trouble was, syncing up between Google, iCal, and my Blackberry was becoming a pain. Spanning Sync is a limited option for the Google/iCal part but you still have to then sync separately with your device – and this week, any iCal sync starting wiping out any new entries on my Blackberry.
Google Mobile has now solved my problems at a stroke – it syncs Google Calendar beautifully with my Blackberry calendar automatically and I can add or delete items on the fly. If this is a sign of Google’s mobile apps to come, it’s a good start and until I pick up a new Mac and I can use an iPhone properly in Bermuda, this will certainly be my preferred option.
To set it up, simply go to mobile.google.com on your device and download the apps you want. You need a Google account to get started – if you need one, e-mail me and I’ll happily send you an invite.