11-11-2009 03:14 PM
11-12-2009 04:12 AM
11-12-2009 11:14 AM - last edited on 11-12-2009 12:09 PM by ghollister
Mike is right. Data syncs between ACT! and your Google account using CompanionLink. Then, your Google account automatically syncs with your Droid, over-the-air. Go here for more info.
07-28-2010 05:45 PM
Is there another sync product for Act with the Droid other than CompanionLink or am I stuck? I've been happily using it for many years, through Palm, Treo and Blackberry. Now, with my Droid, I'm underwhelmed.
I'm running Act 2010 with the DroidX. I have 8000 contacts in Act.
I've been in discussions with tech support for a week. At this point, I wouldn't recommend their solution.
First, as opposed to jusy synching, they've decided to give us an app for the droid, Deja Office. This is slow and sucks up CPU cycles. You sync Act to Deja and then Deja syncs on the Droid with the droid contact db. The purge and reload I ran took almost 8 hours. And you can't run it overnight because the 2nd step, Deja to Droid contact list doesn't take place until after you hit Ok, after the act to Deja sync completes. Crazy. But just my humble opinion. Whether their interface is better or not is secondary when you chew up memory, time CPU cycles (and it is slow!).
The Deja Office is a suite so I also get a calendar. Great. Now I have two calendars and two sets of alarms, cause yes, the native and Deja calendars pop up activities.
Contacts are getting messed up. My Record was in tact but I also ended up with a phantom record of my email and mobile with no name. I'me getting duplicate categories (akin to Act's Groups) and the Category on the droid's native app is incomplete while Deja seems more complete.
And forget it if you run Facebook. I was told to potentially turn off Facebook. Wrong answer people. And then I was told there wasn't any resource competition between Deja, the native contact app and Facebook. wrong again. Any droid user knows when you install Facebook, it integrates so nicely with the native list that people's status Facebook picture becomes the id picture for the contact. Heck even my Storm did that (with Companion Link and Act). Once I started with Companion Link not only did that go away, but originally, somehow the Facebook list was integrated into the native list. Yes, merged. That is now gone. In some cases, if I click on the Facebook category, I'm missing over 100 Friends! The other error was in some cases it didn't merge and I ended up with a Deja/Native contact and a Facebook contact, thus increasing the size of my database even more.
And the answer I got was their interface was better. Great. Problem is, the shortcut and default stuff is the droid's and it wasn't bad at all.
Add in the long wait time for tech support on the phone (30 minutes if you're lucky)!
It is killing my battery just to sync. Forgive my frustration but they've taken what was a good application, Companion Link and broken it. Sometimes people forget to leave things alone and not to overimprove it. And I'm going out on a limb that at some point, they'll charge for Deja Office.
All most people want is to get their Act contact info to the phone.
07-28-2010 06:26 PM
I have not been able to make CompanionLink useful in syncing between ACT! and the Motorola Droid in either of the two alternate methods. I think the problem stems from poor contact applications on the Droid: both Google's and CompanionLink's.
1) Syncing via the Google account associated with the Droid
CompanionLink seems to sync fine with the Google gmail account. CompanionLink tech support states thats all they do. Google Sync then gets the info out to the Droid. The Android "Intelligent" Merge then merges contacts according to some unpublished set of rules. I have never been able to determine what the rules are. I have also never been able to find which contacts have been merged. I also can not find any way to turn it off.
The Droid merges about 80 of my 1800 contacts. Gmail has a duplicate check, but it only identifies 2 sets of 2 contacts as duplicates. This is with all the "contacts" really being non-duplicate in real life. I also only sync with ACT!. No other lists such as Facebook.
CompanionLink is totally at a loss when activities from these contacts might be passed back to ACT!. I got so many duplicates that I turned to one-way sync only.
I think the problem here stems from Google's poor implementation for a situation where the Droid is not considered the center of the world. CompanionLink does not account for that problem and it may be intrinsically impossible to do so with the present state of Droid software.
Sometimes Company names disappear -- you can search by them, but they are not displayed.
2) Deja Office
I gave up trying to sync the Deja lists with the native Droid lists. I still seem to have to press OK about every time I look at anything in Deja Office. I have no idea why.
The contacts sync, I think. Deja office does not tell me how many contacts are in the list so I do not really know.
The Deja Calendar remains empty. Every time I tap the Category menu item the application stops and comes up with a window telling me to Force Close.
The actual sync process requires actions that are different than the on-screen directions. I have yet to find any documentation.
The whole endeavor has been a real pain so far.
07-28-2010 06:46 PM
Amazing how one app can ruin an experience with a phone. And I need this for work!
I guess I should have said I'm thankful for the duplicate alarms and activities because you reminded me there are days on the calendar that have nothing. That is helpful.
I wouldn't be so hard on Android. I don't know why Companion link has deja except to eventually try and sell it? All we need are the hooks into the google contacts/calendar.
The tech support person keeps asking me if everything came over on the sync. I'm thinking you know I can't answer ... i have too many contacts and your developers never put in a counter! The closest counter I've found ... go into the phone, click contacts and it tells you how many phone contacts there are.
They had me delete theadditional categories. Then the categories reappeared. The contacts listed under "customer" on the native app is a lot less then the same category in deja! So data isn't transferring.
I'm thinking I might have to try the wireless. It can't be worse and then I could dump Deja. and again, what they missed in the whole deja experiment is effeciency ... if i want my contacts, first I have to launch deja, then click contacts. Same for calendar. You have no choice but to go into their suite and then get what you want. You can't just go straight to contacts!
07-28-2010 07:35 PM
You might have a look at 123 synchronizer.
08-02-2010 06:48 AM
> I wouldn't be so hard on Android. I don't know why Companion link has deja except to eventually try and sell it? All we need are the hooks into the google contacts/calendar.
I feel all your pain. Let me explain some things.
Hooks to Android Contacts and Calendar would only be useful if you use ACT! for trivial purposes.
We created DejaOffice because we realized that no ACT! user will not be happy with Android Contacts and Android Calendar. Consider this:
Android Contacts: Only shows 6 entries per list view. Great for 200 contacts, rediculous for 2000. It does not show company name. It does not sort by Company name, only shows the first 200 characters of notes, no categories. If you put more than 1000 contacts on your phone, Android Contacts will start mixing up phone numbers, companies and email values, re-attaching them to other records. And finally: every piece of Name/Address/Phone data you give to Google is owned by them, and they will use it for marketing. Read their Terms of Service.
Calendar: Can't handle single date exceptions. Can't handle completions. No categories. No linked Contacts.
Alarms/Reminders: The Android notification system rings once very quietly, and goes away.
Android apps are so feeble they make 1996 PalmPilot look uber geeky.
CompanionLink has no choice but to make an app to get a "landing spot" for ACT! data. It's not our preference. DejaOffice has Categories, can disply 22 contacts per screen, can handle unlimited notes, links Calendar to Contacts, and can handle 60,000 contacts.
For the problems stated above, here are the solutions:
1. To stabilize your Android Contacts, choose one sync destination and stick to it. If you sync Android Contacts from the PC, and simultaneously auto-sync to Google Contacts you will get interference that exhibits as name mashing, missing records, truncated notes, and work phone changing to "other" phone. Turn off Google Sync by going to Android Contacts, select Accounts, and turn "Auto-Sync" off.
2. To stabilize Android Calendar, turn the Google Sync off.
3. In DejaCalendar, we've recently done a lot of work to correct an early mistake from our developers. DejaCalendar 1.6 is now in beta with a completely new Calendar that is now fully ACT! Compliant, and offers alarms and 100% of the features the native Calendar has. We recommend you stop syncing to the native Calendar. There is no issue with double alarms, that's just a setting in DejaOffice.
To run DejaContacts and DejaCalendar directly from your Android Desktop, you "long press" where you want the icon to be, and then select "Shortcut", "Applications", "DejaOffice". This will let you create a direct desktop shortcut. Easy!
We have great plans for DejaOffice. We are going to fully integrated DejaContacts with the dialer, removing any reason to use the feeble and dangerous Android Contacts app. We are going to remake Alarms so they ring and snooze like a clock does. We are going to add History and notes as separate files, and allow on-phone completions. We will add voice lookup and dialing. We will add a true opportunities app. We will have wi-Fi and secure OTA Wireless sync that doesn't go through Google Servers or hand them your data for their marketing purposes. As our efforts develop, we'll be able to model ACT! extremely well in Android phones, and they will become more powerful than any Palm or BlackBerry ever was. This is the future. DejaOffice also runs on iPhone. So if you drop your Android, you can switch to iPhone and vice versa. One solution for two different OS platforms.
I hope this information helps! To try CompanionLink and DejaOffice is completely free for 14 days. See our website for details. Thanks everyone for your interest in CompanionLink!
Wayland Bruns, CTO
CompanionLink Software, Inc.
08-02-2010 10:42 AM
I am have some nagging issues with DejaOffice myself, so I join the choir.
However I understand the need for this application because, as Wayland wrote above, the native phone application simply was not designed for a serious Act! user and really falls short of what I need it to do.
And while I see the potential in DejaOffice to become a robust mini-Act! for my EVO 4G, what I have today is an immature application that is still in development. What I mean by that is that it has some bugs and lacks many important features, although quite a few are planned for the near future.
Yes, it's frustrating right now, and frankly, not quite useful yet. Once it's able to capture and log phone calls, messages, and emails (planned for this month!), I will consider using it. And with calls I'd hope to get history too, of course.
It'll be important too to have in the future the capacity to intercept incoming calls and display contact info via caller ID, a feature that is not mentioned in their website. I don't know if it's even possible to replace the native phone app that does it now with DejaOffice, but if it is then that could allow more contact details to show up besides his/her name (i.e. Company name, Status ID, etc.). Sometimes just having the person's name when a call comes in doesn't ring a bell in my brain (specially with thousands of contacts), so I'd appreciate if DejaOffice showed up on the phone screen with the additional info I'd pre-selected for it to show me.
Because DejaOffice is an application under control of CompanionLink and not Google or HTC, I can see these features appearing soon. The people at CompanionLink know Act! and what users want from it, and judging from the vigorous and quick response from Wayland above, they are committed and challenged to make it work. That's good news for us Act! users that nowadays need the same power of Act! In our hands when on the road and a call comes in. In many cases there is no time to boot up the notebook to look up history or relate the call to a contact.
Finally, Wayland brought up a point that merits repeating: If you use the native Android application, Google owns ALL your contact info and is free to market to them. That also happens if you use CompanionLink Sync thru Google. For me, at least, that is not acceptable, and I imagine that many companies will feel the same about giving away their hard-earned contact info to Google. This fact alone is a strong incentive for CompanionLink to develop DejaOffice and make it work well, for without a secure application many corporations (particularly in health and financial services) won't consider data porting to a phone.
Also for this reason I use the CompanionLink sync thru USB software, not the thru-the-cloud version. The drawback is that my sync now occurs only at the office and not on the road in realtime, but I'm not about to expose my contacts in exchange for that convenience. NOTE: because DejaOffice also syncs in the phone with its native Google Contacts, I've blocked my phone from syncing that app with my Google web account, that stands empty (no contacts). Call me paranoid, but I just don't trust Google with that info. They may not have an immediate use for it now, but it becomes theirs forever, and they will certainly think of a way of monetizing it in the future.
So, Wayland, thanks for the initiative of developing this solution. All we need now is for it to work. Please make that happen soon before many potential users that need it (or something like it) walk away disappointed.
08-02-2010 04:07 PM
My DejaOffice calendar now works on the Droid. Although I am still not sure that all of my 1800 contacts are syncing, the USB sync to DejaOffice appears to work better than the gmail wireless sync to Android Contacts.
I called CompanionLink support again today and reached someone who knew how to solve the problem. It turns out that the Android uninstall of DejaOffice does not do a complete uninstall. The support rep had me do an uninstall of DejaOffice (been there), manually remove a folder from the SD card (new step), and power cycle the Droid (new step). Then I reinstalled DejaOffice from Market. Now the calendar is populated and the status windows during the sync agree with the insructions.
Best guess is that something got corrupted in the DejaOffice stuff on the SD card and the uninstall/install process did not clear it. The post-uninstall cleanup seems to be key.
I had set DejaOffice to not sync with the native Android apps a while ago. I am doing all manual syncs. I will keep trying the gmail sync (one-way) for a while to do comparisons.