PIM 2.0: Mobical Redux

If you’ve been reading this site for over a year then (1) hey thanks, and (2) you’ll remember that Mobical was the very service that got me started on my quest for a worthy PIM 2.0 solution.

Back then Mobical was a beta service, and just like Gmail the trendy beta tag remains. But a lot has changed since the last time we looked at it. And for the better…

Mobical SyncML Profile

Like the recently-reviewed Funambol, Mobical installs on your device as a proper SyncML client.

Mobical Syncable Applications

And unlike Funambol, Mobical will let you sync more items, including notes and texts. I’m not so concerned about web bookmarks, as I mostly use Opera Mini anyway.

Mobical Web Export

But the big news can be found on the Mobical site — you can now export all appointments and contacts to a file on any desktop computer!

Contacts can be saved as a vCard while calendar entries can be saved as either .ics or .vcs files. No notes or text exports are available as of yet; fortunately there’s an excellent alternative on Nokia devices for the latter.

This feature addresses my number one complaint with the myFUNAMBOL portal and vufone — that your data is locked up on their servers once its uploaded there — and puts Mobical way out in front. It would also seem to put Mobical ahead of Nokia’s own Ovi Sync, as Nokia’s online PIM service doesn’t seem to have any export functionality either.

I’m also pleased to report that previous issues syncing data back to my handset appear to have gone away — although some of my contact’s phone numbers may have been mixed up on the return trip. I’m still investigating that.

It’s not perfect, but it does seem like a viable solution to bypassing the traditional computer sync  altogether, so long as you’ve got a fat data plan or a free WiFi signal for your handset…

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About Andrew

Mobile phones, Linux and copyright reform. Those go together, right?
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