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DejaOffice to sync Outlook with Kindle Fire
on May 25, 2012
For a long time, I have been synchronizing my iPod Touch with Outlook FOR FREE. How surprising to discover that to sync Outlook with my new Kindle Fire will cost me $50.00. Yes, I knew ahead from the other reviews that I would have to buy the $50.00 Companion Link software (for my desktop) along with the free DejaOffice on my Kindle Fire in order to synchronize Outlook on the Kindle Fire.
But, I figured I'd do it, and Companion Link promised a much more complete experience. Color coded contacts and calendar events would move flawlessly from my desktop to my Kindle Fire, and contacts would move with all categories in tact. (When you have hundreds of business contacts, you have to have categories, or you'll never find anything.) When the iPod Touch synced with Outlook, it ignored all the categories.
So, the Companion Link/DejaOffice sync on the Kindle Fire works pretty well with one ENORMOUS exception. As promised, the colors and categories transfer fine with a little tweaking. The calendar appears pretty well with color coded events. You have to do some serious work on "preferences" but eventually you get the calendar looking pretty good. Notes and tasks transfer fine.
Now the ENORMOUS EXCEPTION. When contacts are copied from Outlook on the desktop, to the Kindle using the synchronization window from Companion Link, the alphabetized contacts go haywire. You can enter contacts by first name/last name in Outlook, but then there's a line that says "file as" and, of course, as I was always taught and all phone books still do, you file as "LAST NAME/first name." (That is, unless you are a kid with a cell phone.)
When Companion Link syncs Outlook to the Kindle Fire, the alphabetized names go nuts... some are listed by first name, some are listed by last name. There is no pattern to any of it. Now, I have to say that with the free sync from Apple in iTunes, the same thing happened, but it was free, and I learned to live with it. (The new iPod Touch may have solved this, I don't know.) But, with hundreds of contacts, and at a cost of $50.00 for CompanionLink/DejaOffice, I expect all my contacts to be listed LAST NAME/first name.
I will try to fix this with Companion Link. They seem to have a working phone help line, and other ways to contact them. If it gets fixed, I'll let you know.
PS. 5/31/12, After contacting CompanionLink at their website about the alphabetizing issue I got a simple reply which said I should just make a preference selection in DejaOffice which would list my contacts last name first. Of course, I had already done that, and it didn't work. Instead, after endless head scratching, I found a preference that said, list by "file as," which is where all my contacts in MS Outlook are listed last name first. I did this and it worked.
There are a few other minor issues with DejaOffice on the Kindle Fire. For instance, the program crashes when you accidentally touch the phone icon in contacts. The Kindle Fire is not a phone, so there should not even be a phone icon in the Kindle Fire version of DejaOffice. But, I finally have DejaOffice working in a manner I can live with, though at $50.00 for Companionlink, it is still way overpriced. This experience has me leaning more and more toward switching entirely to Apple devices where such synchronization of contacts, calendar, etc is effortless, seamless, automatic, and free. Yeah, I know the Apple devices are much more expensive. I got the Kindle Fire free for Christmas, and the iPad alone starts at $500.00. But, at some point it may be worth it to get on with one's life rather than spend hours trying to solve these compatibility problems between different operating systems.
Sorry this post is so long. Maybe it will save someone else some time.