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Review: Datepedia for BlackBerry

By Ryan Blundell on 13 Nov 2008 09:03 am EST
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Datepedia

The native BlackBerry calendar helps keep everyone organized. Entering appointments, meetings and play dates in, it's been a loyal and trustworthy companion. Unfortunately, it's not very proactive. It leaves all of the data input to you. Sure, it keeps track of the days of the week, but what about important national or religious holidays, or even sporting events? Usually a gander at Google or exporting the info from Outlook solves the problem, but not convenient.

Mobatech, who brought you Mobile CheckBook and Mobile Bartender (yay), presents datepedia!

The application grants access to a multitude of holidays that are celebrated around the world. Sporting events, such as the start of the NHL regular season, are tracked as well. Datepedia can be used to input personal birthdays, anniversaries and more. With options such as search, filter or export, you may use datepedia to mark today as the day you found an easier way to keep track of important dates.

Datepedia for BlackBerry Smartphones

Datepedia
plenty of categories to choose from

Datepedia is a brawny, yet effortless library of dates to remember. The main menu consists of several categories to choose from; National Holidays, Religious Holidays, Sporting Events and Personal Events. You can also add an event or search for one. Each category consists of subcategories to choose from;

National Holidays - National Holidays are broken down by Country. Initially, the holidays for 10 countries are accessible. Click on a Country and its major holidays appear in the next screen. Each holiday entry lists the name of the holiday, date and day of the week it lands on, depending on the year. Clicking on a particular holiday sends you to a calendar view, where you can see the month in which the holiday occurs.

Religious Holidays - These holidays are separated into Christian, Jewish and Islamic holidays. With regards to my religion, there were some listed that I wasn't aware of. Hmm, add another wrinkle to my brain. In this category's calendar view, a brief description of the religious holiday is shown.

Sporting Events - This covers almost everything from the NHL to NASCAR to the Olympics. datepedia gives a basic schedule of all-star games, beginning and ending of seasons, bowls and more.

Personal Events - Helps you stay out of the dog house by listing the Birthdays and Anniversaries that you enter.

Datepedia
view important dates for 2008, 2009 and 2010

With each of these categories, you can export desired information directly to your BlackBerry Calendar application, enabling you to create alerts for the holidays and eliminating the task of manually entering the information in the Calendar. Information can be added to each category as well. You can add countries, and its holidays, to the National Holiday list or add Religions to the Religious Holidays section. datepedia gives you a look into the future, as it lists each holiday or event for (currently) 2008, 2009 and 2010. You are able to filter entries by year, meaning that you can choose to view the holidays in 2009 only. Looking for a particular entry? Try using the search option. You can enter keywords and select which category to search in.

Datepedia
easily export entries to your BlackBerry Calendar

The navigation was easy enough, especially with the wrap-around addition. Adding these entries to the BlackBerry Calendar was flawless, as you can select to export all entries, multiple entries or the highlighted entry. Though I found the application possessing great potential, there were a few issues I ran across when digging through datepedia;

  • the main menu fits 5 out of the 6 categories. If the tabs were made slightly smaller, it would look fantastic.
  • If I was in a category (say Birthday) and wanted to add an entry, I have to leave the category and select Add New Event. There should be the ability to add a Birthday while in the Birthday section. 
  • The inability to search or add events in multiple Categories at once. I have to select one at a time.

The recent update (version 1.0.3.2) has fixed a major issue with the calendar view. In the previous version the calendar view would display Sunday through Thursday, leaving Friday and Saturday out. Yay! I thought my social life was gone forever. With this solved, perhaps other issues will be addressed soon.

Datepedia
your month, now with seven days a week!

The next event: the Conclusion

After a few tweaks, datepedia will be the ultimate reference point for important dates. The application will save you the time it takes to Google and add important dates, as you can easily export to the calendar. If you have the time to add specific holidays and/or religions, you'll have an easier time keeping track of what's important. There isn't a trial period available for datepedia - you can pick it up at the CrackBerry store for $9.95. If Mobatech can win this guy over with Mobile Bartender, then it won't take too much more work to make me sing datepedia's praises.

Pros
  • Multiple export options
  • Add your own entries
  • List view and calendar view available

Cons

  • A lot of backwards steps to add entries
  • Main menu too big

Purchase

Reader comments

Review: Datepedia for BlackBerry

5 Comments

Can someone tell me why I should pay for this app, over adding free public calendar subscriptions to Google Calendar and then syncing them to my Blackberry? I get the holidays, my favorite sports teams schedule, the moon cycles, etc. For free and without, yet another app?

i only read da first paragraph but dats what i said when u guys first posted this app! USELESS!!! google is just as convenient and free!

A couple notes to answer some of the questions posted... Datepedia can be used to quickly view dates by category (e.g. upcoming Christian holidays, Birthdays in December, etc) without having to scroll through the BB calendar by date. There's added flexibility when exporting dates so you're not stuck having to export all dates for all years. You can pick and choose dates that are important to you and only move those to your BlackBerry calendar. No PC sync required.

I have to agree that if you already have Google Sync, this app can seem a bit useless. For me, I only allow fifteen days to appear on my calender any way, because I simply don't need to know that far in advance what my days hold. I see this as more of a shortcut app than a extra useful one. While, yes, it may be quicker, if you really care about all that stuff, you'll take the time to look it up. It's a laziness app, hands down.

I have not tried datepedia yet but when I was a Palm user (last week), I used a similar program called Holidates and found it to be very useful for my needs.

The problem with the other solutions are that they are one-size fits all solutions not a customizable one. Suppose I don't want all the Yankee Games in my calendar but just want the home games that are on Wednesday, this program would allow that, suppose I don't want all the Jewish Holidays in my calendar just the High Holy Days this program would allow that.

That said, there is one thing that gave me pause when reading this review, the limited years covered for $9.99, it appears that you are getting only 2 years of information since 2008 is nearing its end. Does the program update itself in someway? Are future database updates included in the purchase price?