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Old February 25th, 2010, 07:05 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Anyone have Exchange and using Touchdown?

10 yr + Blackberry user here. Waiting for NexusOne or Incredible to hit VZW. I am looking to move 5 BB users to Android. I am going to "test" out either phone to make sure the users will be satisfied prior to pulling the trigger and I have a few questions.

If you have Exchange and use touchdown could you answer a few questions?

How does TD work as far a your "homescreen" is concerned?

What about if you have that PLUS a gmail account (or 2) work on homescreen?

In a more detailed way, I am used to having a all my email come into one account on my BB and I know from reading various posts here this is not the case with Android. I am curios to know how an exchange account and gmail account play out on the phone's home screen. Can you have icons that show each account with notifications? I am confused at looking a touchdown screen shots and it looks like your exchange account consumes the entire homescreen.

It's odd I know BB so well and feel like the new kid in school and it bothers me that my knowledge is not up to par yet. Although not having a Android phone yet, I am anxious to find some things out prior since obviously VZW is not fast enough.

Much thanks in advance and screen shots would help if you can.

Best Regards,

Jeff

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Old February 25th, 2010, 08:16 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I use both Touchdown and Gmail. Touchdown is a decent replacement for a Blackberry but it's not perfect. I think the UI needs to improve. It also needs more functionality in creating calendar events and tasks (categories cannot be created though tasks you have created in Outlook will show up in Touchdown). There is no memopad/notes support yet but it supposedly is coming, I think the category task issue is coming too.

As for the home screen, I think you might be talking about widgets. I don't use any of the Touchdown widgets but they have a ton to choose from including creating lots of shortcuts. There is a full screen one that you can change between email, calendar (in an agenda view), tasks, and contacts. They also have a set of 2x3 widgets (which are a bit funky, they take up 3/4 up of the width of the screen so there's no symmetry from that perspective) for email and calendar.

I'll tell you what I personally do that works well for me. I've never been a person who used my blackberry a lot for sending emails (I like to use my desktop, I feel I can process thoughts better and construct much better emails) so I only go to the email 90% of the time via the notification bar when I get new messages to read them. I also use the google to Outlook calendar sync from my desktop and then use Pure Calendar as it gives me IMO the best view of my appointments in a nice customizable widget form. I just don't like the Touchdown Calendar views that much.

And about GMail, I personally don't use mine much so I just go to my emails form my notification bar as well, I don't use an widgets for that. You get separate notifications in the notification bar for gmail. As you can tell I like to use the notification bar for going to look at my emails.

If you go to nitrodesk's webpage there should be some screenshots.
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Old February 25th, 2010, 09:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by negreenfield View Post
I use both Touchdown and Gmail. Touchdown is a decent replacement for a Blackberry but it's not perfect. I think the UI needs to improve. It also needs more functionality in creating calendar events and tasks (categories cannot be created though tasks you have created in Outlook will show up in Touchdown). There is no memopad/notes support yet but it supposedly is coming, I think the category task issue is coming too.

As for the home screen, I think you might be talking about widgets. I don't use any of the Touchdown widgets but they have a ton to choose from including creating lots of shortcuts. There is a full screen one that you can change between email, calendar (in an agenda view), tasks, and contacts. They also have a set of 2x3 widgets (which are a bit funky, they take up 3/4 up of the width of the screen so there's no symmetry from that perspective) for email and calendar.

I'll tell you what I personally do that works well for me. I've never been a person who used my blackberry a lot for sending emails (I like to use my desktop, I feel I can process thoughts better and construct much better emails) so I only go to the email 90% of the time via the notification bar when I get new messages to read them. I also use the google to Outlook calendar sync from my desktop and then use Pure Calendar as it gives me IMO the best view of my appointments in a nice customizable widget form. I just don't like the Touchdown Calendar views that much.

And about GMail, I personally don't use mine much so I just go to my emails form my notification bar as well, I don't use an widgets for that. You get separate notifications in the notification bar for gmail. As you can tell I like to use the notification bar for going to look at my emails.

If you go to nitrodesk's webpage there should be some screenshots.
Much thanks for the detailed response. So if I understand you right, the "notification bar" will tell you if you have emails from separate mail icons? Meaning if I get an email from exchange and an email from gmail, I'll be able to tell via notification bar?
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Old February 25th, 2010, 09:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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You are exactly right. Each has their own icon in the small notification bar at the top of the screen and in the full detail notification view as well. What I haven't done yet is see if I can get different notification sounds for each, just never bothered to try.
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Old February 25th, 2010, 10:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I am a long time BB user who made the switch to Android in November. There is no doubt that nothing beats BB when it comes to email and exchane integration. I like to say that Blackberry is about 10% better at email, but android is 90% better at everything else.

I use Touchdown for the exchange email, but use the built in exchange sync for calendar and contacts. It is a shame that the built in exchange email on Android is so weak, hopefully that will be something they can improve in the future and it will eliminate the need for Touchdown.

Using Touchdown works fine. I will say that Touchdown is actually a bit better than Blackberry in working with folders because you can set it to sync up folders to the phone (ie if you have a rule on the desktop that moves messages from a listserve or something to a specific folder, you can access them on the android phone, when I could never get them to show up on the blackberry). However, it definitely lacks the shortcuts available on BB to quickly file emails for later processing.

The Gmail app works great, and there are many reviews of the gmail app. The only problem I have had with the gmail app is that you have scroll to the bottom of the email to get to the reply button. Seems they could have had it docked at the bottom of the screen and save some time. I am not a heavy gmail user, but use it for about 20% of my email.

There is no combined inbox.

The 2x3 widget for Touchdown sits on the homescreen and shows you the new emails, while allowing other icons on the home screen. I do not use a widget for gmail, instead relying on the notification bar to tell me when I have new emails.

Hope this gives you some info.... if your primary use of the smartphone is to keep up on exchange emails, I would say you are better off sticking with Blackberry. However, if you want the flexibility of doing anything else, go with Android. I have the Droid and love it.....
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Old February 25th, 2010, 10:31 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I have to say, when I 1st switched to Android last year I did not like Touchdown at all...I used Roadsync and was quite happy with it. Well, long story short, I couldn't get Roadsync working one day so I downloaded Touchdown for the 5 day trial so I could still get my calendar entries and I am SO impressed I am going to keep it. I wasn't going to use it for email because I can get that through my phone's native app...but I LOVE the widgets. I like being able to see more than 1 thing at a time!

Touchdown is the best I've tried so far. The only issue I am having is I can't figure out how to change my signature, does anyone have any advice on that?
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Old February 26th, 2010, 02:03 AM   #7 (permalink)
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You can't change the signature in the trial version of Touchdown. For the paid verison, go to "Setting", then "Advance", there is a box for you to enter your signature.

Does anybody find the calendar "month view" is very slow in Touchdown?
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Old February 26th, 2010, 09:39 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I use both touchdown for my work email and gmail for personal. Touchdown is a fantastic program that allows for everything I needed it to do. Like a previous user said, I also use Pure Calender and use the native sync for calender and contacts, because that is a spot where Touchdown does lag behind a bit. Their widgets are poorly done (I have emailed the developer).

Yes, on the notification bar I get either the gmail icon or the touchdown mail icon (or usually for me both) to tell me where I have new emails. I also have set the LED light on my Droid to be a different color, but that only tells me where the latest is from.
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Old February 26th, 2010, 10:00 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Thanks all for commenting. I am very excited to try out the Android OS. I just need to make sure we get emails quickly (does not have to be immediate) and that it's easy to use.

We have (5) BB users. Three of them are up for contract in April. We also have 2 other users that just have non-smart phones with one of them up for contract. My idea is to use that for an upgrade and get a Android phone and test it out for a few weeks. If everything goes right I will keep that phone and put my Tour in the drawer. Get the other users up and going with what ever type of phone they want. I am hoping also the new android is a World phone (highly unlikely) as some of us travel over seas (Brazil and Mexico) maybe twice a year. If not we will just swapp to one of our Tours prior to trip then swap back.

Again thanks for all the comments. Please continue to add content to this thread as there are not many like it. I am sure there are BB users in my similar situation.

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Old February 26th, 2010, 01:02 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Cool, thanks for the signature info...I was waiting until the trial was up before I paid for the full version. I wish the email widget showed what's in your inbox and not just what's new in your inbox...but you can't have everything I guess!

I don't use the full month so I haven't noticed any lag.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 10:31 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Another quick question.

Do you have separate contacts? I.E Outlook and gmail? Or are they combined? We have like 4000 contacts in Outlook.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 10:35 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gobluejd View Post
How does TD work as far a your "homescreen" is concerned?
I don't use Touchdown's widgets either. I just have an icon for it on my home screen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gobluejd View Post
In a more detailed way, I am used to having a all my email come into one account on my BB and I know from reading various posts here this is not the case with Android.
You could set up your gmail account to pull mail from other accounts (seems to be a popular solution for POP accounts and Yahoo) but I doubt it would work with your Exchange account.

Quote:
Originally Posted by negreenfield View Post
What I haven't done yet is see if I can get different notification sounds for each, just never bothered to try.
I don't think you can. However, the rules in the latest version of Touchdown will allow you to set up custom notifications for Touchdown.

Quote:
Originally Posted by austink View Post
Using Touchdown works fine. I will say that Touchdown is actually a bit better than Blackberry in working with folders because you can set it to sync up folders to the phone (ie if you have a rule on the desktop that moves messages from a listserve or something to a specific folder, you can access them on the android phone, when I could never get them to show up on the blackberry).
I tried endlessly on BB sites to point out that BB's don't sync email and this is a key example of one of the major differences. Push and reconciliation worked fairly well with BES but I really prefer having ActiveSync.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gobluejd View Post
Do you have separate contacts? I.E Outlook and gmail? Or are they combined? We have like 4000 contacts in Outlook.
Touchdown has its own contacts. I don't use them (like others above). I allow my Exchange contacts to sync natively and they're combined with my gmail contacts.
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Old March 1st, 2010, 12:31 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by takeshi View Post
I don't use Touchdown's widgets either. I just have an icon for it on my home screen.


You could set up your gmail account to pull mail from other accounts (seems to be a popular solution for POP accounts and Yahoo) but I doubt it would work with your Exchange account.


I don't think you can. However, the rules in the latest version of Touchdown will allow you to set up custom notifications for Touchdown.


I tried endlessly on BB sites to point out that BB's don't sync email and this is a key example of one of the major differences. Push and reconciliation worked fairly well with BES but I really prefer having ActiveSync.


Touchdown has its own contacts. I don't use them (like others above). I allow my Exchange contacts to sync natively and they're combined with my gmail contacts.
Much thanks for your detailed info.

God I can not wait for N1 or Incredible to come out!!!!!
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Old March 5th, 2010, 11:52 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Is there a way to disable the pin requirement on Touchdown or at least not have it pop up so often? I'm using the trial right now but it seems like it wants me to enter the pin about every 3rd or 4th time I chek e-mail.
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