Do you ever get the feeling that there just aren’t enough hours in the day for you to complete everything on your agenda? Do you often forget important tasks or appointments throughout the day? If you’re anything like me, then you probably answered yes to both of those questions.
One would think that the native BlackBerry calendar would be the best tool to solve this problem, but unfortunately this is not the case. Luckily, I found a solution: Calendar Pro for Blackberry, brought to you by SBSH Mobile Software LTD. Full review (of the BlackBerry Storm version) after the jump..
From the very first use, it was clear that this application was developed with simplicity and ease-of-use in mind. Most importantly, Calendar Pro is feature rich and aesthetically pleasing, unlike the native BlackBerry calendar. Upon start up, you are faced with a ‘view picker’ that allows you to navigate between the different views in Calendar Pro.
On this screen you are given 4 view choices: Daily, Weekly, Monthly, and Tasks.
The daily view allows you to view all of today’s tasks and appointments at a glance. A daily timeline display at the top of the screen shows the time frames of when different events are scheduled to occur. Below the timeline, a list of appointments and tasks are shown. These events can be color coded by category or database. Entries can also contain alarm, private, note, and recurring status icons.
You may have guessed that the weekly view is set up in a grid view that contains vertical bars that show the week’s agenda. Each colored box represents an appointment and empty boxes indicate free hours. This view also has a timeline that shows when certain tasks (red blocks) are scheduled to occur throughout the day. The weekly view helps you to easily figure out what you have going on and what free time is left over. The bottom pane is dedicated to show more details of a highlighted appointment box.
This view displays a full month of agenda all on one screen. Daily timelines with status colors show appointments for each day. Red boxes in each day indicate tasks that are due. You can easily navigate and create appointments from this screen. This view also has the designated area along the bottom that shows appointment details whenever you highlight a day. By actually clicking on a day, you are taken to that daily view.
Last but not least, the tasks view allows you to view and manage all of your tasks with advanced tools that were designed for a Pro. You can easily create new or complete/edit existing tasks, view status/category/priority icons for each task, and use the top search bar to easily search for specific tasks in the list.
One of the things that I like most about this application is the fact that entering information is a breeze. Instead of using confusing labels/lists/tables you are given tabs for navigation. In the appointment screen there are 5 tabs: Details, Notes, Categories, Recurrence, and Attendees (the same is true for the tasks entry, minus the attendees tab). By using tabs, the developers have effectively created a fluid and intuitive data entry process that makes the act of using Calendar Pro an enjoyable experience.
When it comes to ease-of-use, Calendar Pro goes well beyond normal expectations. It does so by making use of visual cues, time blocking, color coded categories, synchronizing with the native BlackBerry databases, and visual timelines. Calendar Pro makes it easy to see when you are free, when you’re not, and what you have to get accomplished during the day. I don’t think I will be returning to the native calendar app anytime soon because I can now manage my time like a PRO.