Since Steve Jobs’ keynote at the WWDC in June, I have been waiting patiently (well, quite impatiently) for the new and improved .Mac which has been rebranded as MobileMe. Based on the keynote and guided tour, MobileMe finally looks like the mail, address book, and calendar applications I expected from Apple when they launch iTools and .Mac so many years ago. As a user of many devices and computers on a daily basis, I have always struggled with keeping everything synchronized. Perhaps MobileMe will finally provide the solution for which I have been looking.
My big question now is, will MobileMe provide enough functionality to convince me to move all of my email, contacts, and calendars from Gmail and Google Calendar to the MobileMe platform? This will be no small feat considering how long I have been using both of those Google applications. The one big plus for me will be the ability to use desktop applications on my Mac and Windows machines. Right now, I can use Gmail on the desktop using IMAP, but having to move messages from one label to another can become annoying and cumbersome. Google also has sync applications for Google Calendar that can sync with Outlook, but I have found the functionality to be buggy at best. To me, neither of these solutions is good enough, and they tend to take away from my productivity and enjoyment of the applications.
If MobileMe can truly deliver on its promise of providing a consistent user experience on my Mac using its built in Mail, Address Book, and iCal applications, my Windows machine using Outlook, and the Internet, I will be a very happy camper. My guess is a lot of other people will feel the exact same way. We’ll know any day now if MobileMe is really Exchange for the rest of us.