Smartphones

Stay organized with Android calendaring apps

Deb Shinder takes a look at the built-in calendar that ships with Android, explains how to perform various calendaring functions, and offers some suggestions for third-party calendar apps.

The last button in the bottom menu is an option labeled "More ..." This will take you to a menu where you can refresh the calendar, select "Go to" and choose any day you wish, or pick the different calendars you want to enable (for example, your Google account, Exchange account, Facebook account, etc.) as shown in Figure 5. Figure 5

You can see all your available calendars and check the ones you want to show

Also in the "More ..." menu is the Settings option. This has two sections: Reminders and Calendar view. The Reminder settings allow you to perform the following:

  • choose which calendars the settings apply to (all or individual calendars)
  • set whether reminders are to be delivered by alerts (sounds), status bar notifications, or turn them off completely
  • set the default reminder time, which can range from 10 minutes to 1 hour prior to the appointment or event
  • select a ringtone for notifications
  • select to vibrate
  • specify whether to hide events that you've declined

Here are the selections for the Calendar view settings:

  • specify what view to start in (Month, Agenda, Week, or Day) if the Calendar app is closed and reopened (if it's left running in the background, it will open in whichever view you left it)
  • set the Day views to show either Time view or Event view (Event view is the default and displays as in Figure 2, but I prefer Time View, which shows you the time for each event or appointment -- with all-day events at the top -- as shown in Figure 6)
  • specify the day on which the week starts (Sunday or Monday)
  • Include weather information, which your device detects from the phone's location settings
Figure 6

Time view shows you the time of each event or appointment

Creating calendar entries

To add a calendar entry, press the Android menu button and select New event. This will bring up the page shown in Figure 7. Figure 7

You can easily add new events to the calendar

On this page, you choose the calendar to which you want to add this event, give the event a name, and select whether it's an all-day event. If you uncheck the "All day" box, a field appears for you to set the start and end times. There are also fields for entering the location and a description of the event. You can even change the default reminder setting that you configured in the Settings menu and include email addresses of guests that you want to invite to this event (or just their name if their email address is listed under their contact information on your phone). Finally, you can define the event as a One-time event, or set it to repeat Daily, Every weekday, Weekly, Monthly, or Yearly. Don't forget to touch the Save button when you're finished to add the event to your calendar.

After you've created an event, you can press the menu button to add a reminder, edit the event, delete the event, show the Agenda view, or share the vCalendar via Bluetooth, mail, or message.

Read about calendar syncing and third-party calendar apps.

About

Debra Littlejohn Shinder, MCSE, MVP is a technology consultant, trainer, and writer who has authored a number of books on computer operating systems, networking, and security. Deb is a tech editor, developmental editor, and contributor to over 20 add...

3 comments
ken lillemo
ken lillemo

Smart Phone manufacturers have drunk the wireless provider Kool-Aid. The only option for any of these new phones is to sync with an online data store of some sort through the wireless connection. It used to be simple to synchronize your desktop client calendar and contacts with your smartphone. Since the phone needs to be recharged regularly, the synchronization generally came automatically as the USB to desktop connection served both roles. However, we no longer get to synch with an Outlook client, we can only synch with an exchange server that IT has granted permissions for, or an online gmail or Microsoft account. It may be understandable that Android does not sync with Outlook (unless the Outlook calendar is uploaded to gmail) but I am thoroughly flummoxed that Microsoft no longer supports synchronizing Outlook calendar and contacts through a simple USB connection with Win7 phones. Smartphone OS manufacturers should realize there is a large market that still uses desktop clients, or do not have access to a corporate mail system except through a local client. Any one of them that jumps to support these environments will have customers driven to their door.

Akilestar
Akilestar

You can do exactly what your asking. The phone in the picture appears to be an HTC Incredible. The first time that phone is plugged in it will offer to install HTC Sync to your computer. This software gives you the ability to sync your phone to your PC or Mac using the provided USB cable. HTC sync will work on any HTC phone, and other manufactures have similar products. Also I am little disappointed at this title. I incorrectly assumed you would be discussing several different calendar apps. Instead you explain in detail the default app and then 3 other apps in very short deail. Also the app you explain only comes on HTC Android phones, not all android phones. They do all have a calendar app, but not that one.

kschlotthauer
kschlotthauer

I was/am disappointed also. I thought it would discuss some cool Calendar apps, but only showed me what I already knew!. TechRepublic.....have some of your readers write articles every now and then. I heard someone say onetime "I will only hire lazy people, why you ask?, well, they always find easier ways to do the their job which saves me money in the end". Let your readers suggest apps and do an article on those!

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