Understanding Android Contacts [Infographic]

Confused about how Android Contacts and Accounts work?  We’ve created an infographic that helps explain the chaos!


Update: Now that Motorola’s DROID RAZR and Samsung’s Galaxy Nexus (featuring the next generation of Android – Ice Cream Sandwich) have been announced, this infographic is even more relevant. These two phones are sure to draw many users over to Android for the first time!


Coming to Android from a “feature phone,” a BlackBerry, or even iOS, there are a number of new features to get used to. One aspect that we’ve seen a lot of uncertainty about is exactly how Contacts work on Android.

As such, we’ve created an infographic to help visualize how Android Contacts work and hopefully eliminate some of the confusion. Check it out below:

(Click the graphic for a larger version)

Android Contacts Infographic

DejaOffice 1.2.2 for iOS Now Available

DejaOffice 1.2.2 is now available from the iTunes App Store! We’ve added and improved a number of things, but the two biggest features we’d like to talk about are a separate contact database and “group by” options.

Our Own Contacts Database

We’ve created a separate Contacts database for DejaContacts. Previously, we used native iPhone Address Book to store our data. While this is convenient, it affected usability because we were forced to render our data only as fast as the iPhone Address Book allowed us to.

No more! With our own database, we can optimize speeds to best suit our app and it’s purpose – accessing thousands of business records instantly.

Please note: It is very important that you run the Import Contacts function if you’ve previously synced DejaOffice via CompanionLink. If you skip this step, you could potentially duplicate or delete all of your contacts data!

If you’d like to take advantage of features that the native address book offers (such as caller ID), you will still be able to sync DejaContacts with the native Address Book.

New “Grouping “ Feature

A powerful new grouping feature allows you to organize data in more ways. In our last email we showed you how categories are a highly efficient way to organize data. But what do you do for more granular control?

That’s where grouping comes in.

DejaOffice can sort your contacts by company, category, city, or city and zip code. For example, picture this scenario: you’re traveling to Atlanta and, while on the plane, you use DejaOffice to bring up a list of all your contacts that live there. You can now easily browse through this list and catch up with nearby clients or old friends.

We’re really excited about these new features and think you’re going to love them too! In fact, we’d love to hear how you will be using the new grouping feature.

Support Update: BlackBerry Sync Issue

CompanionLink is aware of an issue with certain BlackBerry devices where the device’s address book will show only one contact, duplicated several times, after synchronizing. All other contacts do not display on the device even though they may be present in the device’s internal database.

Update:

We have found this is associated with the December 2010 update to Blackberry 5.0 OS in from various carriers. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, Blackberry OS 5.0.0.1015, 5.0.0.1030, and 5.0.0.1067.

Other updates do not appear to have this problem. Blackberry OS 4.0 and 6.0 work fine, as do prior Blackberry OS 5.0 releases. The problem is not unique to CompanionLink. It is reported with other sync products including products from RIM.

Please note your Blackberry OS version carefully. Check your carrier’s website or BlackBerry for an OS update that is PRIOR to December 2010. Please install the older OS. This will likely fix the display problem.

NOTE: If you are unable to downgrade your Blackberry OS, the following steps appear to usually resolve the issue:

1) Perform a full backup of your Blackberry.
NOTE: See instructions for performing a full backup at http://www.blackberry.com/btsc/search.do?cmd=displayKC&docType=kc&externalId=KB12487
2) Perform a security wipe of your Blackberry.
3) Restore the backup you created in step 1).

If you are still in need of assistance, contact technical support at www.companionlink.com/support/contact.html

 

How To Do Contacts, Calendar, Tasks and Notes on the BlackBerry PlayBook

BlackBerry PlayBook by RIM

To be fair, this is not a review of the PlayBook. We haven’t had the chance to get our hands on one yet (though we’ll be getting ours tomorrow). That said, we cannot help but wonder why the PlayBook is shipping without any sort of native email or Personal Information Manager (PIM) applications, such as contacts, calendars, etc.

Yes, it is possible to “tether” your PlayBook with your BlackBerry phone to get this PIM data on the tablet, but that’s not a complete solution. While many of those who buy the PlayBook will have BlackBerries, not all will! For those users, the only option is a browser-based solution, like Google.

Of course, in the long term, there will be other solutions. For one, RIM has stated that native applications will be coming. As to when exactly that is, we don’t know. For users who are getting their PlayBook tomorrow, though, this feature can’t come soon enough!

The other solution is Android. RIM has announced that the PlayBook will be able to run Android apps, like our own DejaOffice. This capability is expected to arrive via software update this summer. We’ll have more information for you on this as soon as we know more ourselves. That said, at this point we are expecting to support DejaOffice on the PlayBook via Android.

In the meantime, we’ll be getting our PlayBook tomorrow and exploring our immediate sync options. We’ll keep you posted!

Droid user tip to show all contacts

Droid 2.0 users who use CompanionLink USB to sync data may notice that some, or perhaps all, of their contacts do not display on the device after synchronizing. The problem is that the display options on the Droid will typically hide the user’s contacts based on group/category membership. Here is how to fix this problem:

1. On the Droid, open Contacts, then go to Menu -> Display Options.
2. Tap the name of the primary contacts account. This will cause the account group list to display.

– To display categorized contacts, select “System group: My Contacts”.

– To display uncategorized contacts, select “All other contacts”.

NOTE: To filter the display so that it only show certain groups (categories), uncheck “System group: My Contacts”, then check the name(s) of the specific groups you want to display.