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PIM Smackdown: Agenda Fusion vs. Pocket Informant

This is part 3 of 3 in our Personal Information Manager Smackdown, The previous installations can be found here (Part 1: Agenda Fusion, Part 2: Pocket Informant).

In Parts 1 and 2 of this series, I looked at Agenda Fusion (by DeveloperOne, $29.95 from the store), and Pocket Informant (by WebIS, $29.95 from the store). Both packages turned in perfect scores, but how do they stack up? While both are great pieces of software, what are the differences between the two? And which is best for me? Click on through for the answers to these (and more) questions.

Introduction

After using both applications for long enough to get a feel for what the developers were thinking I

WC Staff
WC Staff
11 Comments
  • Good comparison Tim! Another cool thing about PI is that their developers are really good at taking user ideas and implementing them and listening to customer feedback. They also develop for other platforms.
  • I loved the concept of this review. But I'll be honest, Im a little underwhelmed. For one, I don't really think either application is worthy of 5 of 5, it kind of misses the point of having the point system. Though I do agree both are worthy of high marks.
    And then head to head very little detail was actually given in each section and the points that are seem to be given to say that PI wins are sometimes very weak. Picking only 1 feature that PI has exclusively and making it seem like one of the big reasons on such small features isn't really a strong enough argument. And I think some you mentioned they both actually have.
    For example the Projects View concept is so much more poweful than the heirarchial tasks view, that that alone(if you lump it under tasks) should turn the table. Instead you said "both methods essentially accomplish the same thing". And for calendar, this section should have been a page long by itself. But all we get is PI wins and it allows multiple early alarms, which is a feature Id be surprised if 5% of users used.
    That and I was hoping a few other applications would have been in the mix. Extreme Agenda(wonder why?), Agenda One, and Agendus would have been fun too...I'd love to see a real detailed Battle Royal of PIMs...
    So hopefully people are trying out all the PIMs and not going just with these two applications, you can download trials of all 5 major PIMs and compare them head to head.
    And hopefully people arent assuming that seeing a review like this, that PI is definitely for them. As stated one of the big disadvantages of PI is usability. It has a lot of features, and with that a LOT of features most people won't need, and so has a bit higher learning curve and some of the 'features' can get in the way.
    Try them ALL and have your own battle royal.....
  • Great comparison! One thing about these 3rd party PIMs that I find very annoying is the speed-to-load. For example when you're in a situation where you need to quickly create an appointment, check your calendar, or pull up a contact, you must wait for the app to load. The act of waiting couldn't be further from mimicking the replacement of a paper-based organizer. The built-in apps are much quicker, and in this way, much more intuitive for certain operations. What I find myself doing is leaving the standard apps as the default, and running the 3rd party PIM when I wanter a better overall 'picture' of my information.
    In a comparison of the 2, it would be beneficial to know how long they take to load.
  • I don't think Extreme Agenda is perceived as being in the same class as the 2 apps reviewed -- as stated in the summary paragraph of this review: http://www.pocketnow.com/index.php?a=portal_detail&t=reviews&id=1032...I was hoping a few other applications would have been in the mix. Extreme Agenda(wonder why)...
  • Thanks for all the comments (positive and constructive)! As stated multiple times I feel like both platforms are strong pieces of software. I did feel like Fusion was more usable and PI was more feature packed.
    Birdsoft: I understand your concern about the rating system. It is worth noting that I wrote the articles in the order that they were published (I did the review of Agenda Fusion before I did the review of Pocket Informant), and those reviews were not intended to compare the two. The comparison was intended as a high level overview of the features offered, I’m afraid I would offend a huge amount of people if I did a more in-depth review as I’m sure I would miss something with all of the features that both applications offer. I agree 100% that folks should give the trial version a spin to see what their preference is.
    Benjimen: I personally had no issues with either application loading slowly (I tested both on a Dell Axim X51v, which is a beast of a PDA). Both run in the background (to provide a faster startup the next time you need it, but this "feature" also utilizes memory) and offer an icon in your "system tray". If anyone else has input on that subject I’d love to hear it.
  • Thanks... I realize you can run the PIMs in the background, however, doing so adds considerable sluggishness to the device. If it were just a PDA, it wouldn't matter -- but my HTC Touch is also a phone, so it makes this point more of an issue. In addition to the speed, I don't like having to scroll on my Today screen, having system-tray icons present makes this happen, as well as cutting a day off of my weather forecast, etc... In addition to the HTC Today plugin, there's not much present -- but what is there is important and I'd rather not add the need to scroll around. Less-is-more when it comes to the Today screen.
    A more comprehensive review would compare a few PIM features speed-wise to the built in apps. Try running stock Calendar and Contact apps, and creating a new item in each and then compare this to either of the reviewed PIMs (with them not present in background). To me, this represents a comparison of basic functionality. When it comes to bells and whistles, of course the built-in apps will be left in the dust. Anyone who installs these apps will need to decide, during the installation, whether they want them to replace or enhance what's already present.I personally had no issues with either application loading slowly (I tested both on a Dell Axim X51v, which is a beast of a PDA). Both run in the background (to provide a faster startup the next time you need it, but this "feature" also utilizes memory) and offer an icon in your "system tray". If anyone else has input on that subject I?d love to hear it.
  • I don't think Extreme Agenda is perceived as being in the same class as the 2 apps reviewed -- as stated in the summary paragraph of this review: http://www.pocketnow.com/index.php?a=portal_detail&t=reviews&id=1032
    And that is an unfortunate assumption that could and should be shattered by reviews. On that same site PI and XA were compared head to head in a similar fashion to this, and XA fared very well. And with Version 3.3 due out tomorrow and the versions that have come out since the review you list, we have caught it up and probably passed these applications in some areas. I didnt quite understand the summary in that review anyway, as it mentioned Agenda One, which even at the time XA had more features than AO.
    So again, it would be fun to see a battle royal....These 2 applications have been around and were leading so long they have that perception of being on top, when in fact some other applications might be better solutions for a lot of people now...
  • It's great that you take pride in your product, I'm sure it represents much time and dedication -- best of luck to you!So again, it would be fun to see a battle royal....These 2 applications have been around and were leading so long they have that perception of being on top, when in fact some other applications might be better solutions for a lot of people now...
  • I was wondering having read the reviews of all three and the head to head between PI and AF if there have been any significant updates to either program which would change the results. I have been looking at PIMS for quite some time since I got the 750. I currently use FC Plan Plus for Outlook version 4 and am thnking about getting version 5 now that it interfaces well with PI now in version 8. I still seem to be stuck on the fence and am also looking at the Pro or the samsung epix. Any new thoughts would be appreciated!
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  • One of the first applications to install on my Windows Mobile devices is a PIM application improvements, either Pocket Informant or Agenda Fusion. I tend to jump back, as new features added for each application, and I am currently using Agenda Fusion 7 because of the planned functionality.