The default calendar app on the iPhone works well. That is until you have used the £1.19 app, Week Calendar. “It’s just a calendar app” I hear you say; well, yes, it is. But a Ferrari is also “just a car”. With iOS 4, Apple gave developers access to the iPhone calendar(s) which gives us [...]
The default calendar app on the iPhone works well. That is until you have used the £1.19 app, Week Calendar. “It’s just a calendar app” I hear you say; well, yes, it is. But a Ferrari is also “just a car”.
With iOS 4, Apple gave developers access to the iPhone calendar(s) which gives us our first major praise: ALL your calendars, events, alarms, birthdays etc are already available in Week Calendar from the moment you launch it.
Also, any changes you make in the app are automatically added to the normal Calendar app too. So, basically by using the app you are not affecting any of your existing calendars in a bad way – by that I mean you won’t need to add events to 2 calendars while you decide which you want to use.
So, what makes Week Calendar worth spending your hard earned cash on if it just uses the normal iPhone calendar as it’s backbone?
Well, here are the ‘extra bits’:
Improved month view: Month view is slightly more compressed and leaves you with more space at the bottom for the selected days events. This is particularly noticeable in 5-week months where the normal Calendar app will leave 1 1/2 lines for events, Week Calendar gives you 2 3/4. Also, in the normal Calendar app in month view you are shown a single ‘dot’ if there are any events. Week Calendar goes a step further – you get a dot for each event and, not only that, they are colour-coded according to the calendar colour. So you can easily see that there are three events on a particular day, one of them being in the ‘Public Holidays’ calendar.
Landscape view & swipe to next: On all views you can use the app in landscape. You can also swipe left/right to move to the next/previous day, week or month.
Jump to date: One of my major issues with the normal Calendar app is not being able to jump to a specific date. If I want to check holiday dates for next year I have to click the little arrow numerous times. With Week Calendar you can ‘Go to day’ and very quickly choose your day, month and year to jump to. Or you can
Event management: On week and day views if you tap on any event you get a flyout giving more details and even icons signifying if it is repeated and if it has an alarm set. You can then jump to the full details page where you have your usual options of editing / deleting and seeing the alarm times. You can also drag and drop events to adjust their times and also copy and paste to new times if you want to duplicate an entry. If you want to delete an event you simply select it and press the ‘Trashcan’ button – no more viewing the details, pressing edit and then scrolling down to delete…
Improved event addition: When you add an event you can choose a custom colour for that particular event regardless of the preset calendar colour. You can also set custom alarms so if you want a 3min and a 3days 1hr 17min warning then you can.
Birthdays: iOS4 added birthdays into the Calendar app but it’s not very helpful as you then need to open up Contacts, find the person, check the date of birth and then work out how old they are. Week Calendar does all this for you – the persons age is shown in the detail of the entry. So simple, yet so useful! You can even ‘Go to day’ a few years ahead and see how old they will be on that birthday!
Event sharing: with Week Calendar you can ‘share’ an event via email. This creates a new email with a .ics attachment that you can use with various other Calendar clients.
MobileMe: I use MobileMe to sync my calendars (among other things) and all this happens in the background. I had initially worried that I would need to open up the actual Calendar app in order for the syncs to take place, however this is not the case. Any new events or edits made in Week Calendar when the normal Calendar app was completely (forced) closed still appeared on my MacBok Pro’s Calendar.
Other features include options and settings for customising daytime hours, the day for the start of the week, whether to darken weekends, font size, colour schemes, time intervals, scrolling options, icon badges and many more things!
So, with Week Calendar, there really is no need to use the default Calendar app. If only Apple had made such a useful Calendar app in the first place… Regardless, the small price is nothing when you think of all the extra features you get in such a well written, well presented app.