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In-Depth Review

reQall

reQall is an iPhone/iPod touch application is a self-described "voice-enabled memory aid," but while that depiction is totally accurate, I prefer to think of it as the ultimate reminder generator and, perhaps, the greatest thing since mother's milk. You see, not only does reQall help me remember anything and everything, it does so in an extremely intelligent fashion using a combination of technologies I use every day, such as my iPhone, email, iCal, the Web, instant messages, and RSS.

reQall is much more than just an iPhone app. It's actually a complete and feature-packed system for capturing information that's important to you and making it easy for you to remember that info at the appropriate time.

Here's how I use it. First, when I think of something I want to remember later -- something I need to look up when I get home, a show I want to record on TV, a phone call I need to make tomorrow, something I need to pick up at the store, or whatever -- here's what I do.

Here's a real-life example: Say I'm out to dinner with my friend Chuck and we discover we like the same kind of heavy metal music. So I tell Chuck I'll burn him a CD with some of my favorite metal-type songs. I know I'll forget unless I create a reminder for myself so I launch the reQall application on my iPhone, tap the + button to add a new reminder, then tap the screen once to begin recording...

reQall first screen

I then say to my iPhone: "Don't forget to make a CD for Chuck Joiner with all the great head banging hits. Heavy metal rules!"

I tap the screen again to end the recording and then the fun begins. Within a few minutes I'll receive an email message that looks like this:

reQall email

Notice that my speech has been converted to text and that the email message includes the audio file so I can listen to what I said if I so desire. But wait -- there's more! The same text also appears:

... in the reQall iPhone application:

reQall app

... in my reQall RSS feed:

reQall RSS

... on the reQall Web site:

reQall Web site

... and/or as an iChat instant message (not shown) as well as an iCal to-do item (not shown either).

Now that alone would be worth more than the price of admission (which, by the way, is FREE), but there's still more -- reQall also understands certain words, and can use them to route your reminder to the right place at the proper time. For example, it understands dates and times so you can have reminders include a time and/or date. They'll show up in all of the places mentioned above on the appropriate date and at the appropriate time. It also understands the word "buy," and will put reminders that use that word on your shopping list. It also understands other words including, "note," "ask," "tell," "remind," and "meet" or "meeting." And if you care to share reminders with others, there's a way to do that, too.

Its voice-to-text translation is surprisingly accurate. Yes, it didn't understand "Chuck Joiner," translating it as "truck joiner," but it did manage close to 100% accuracy on a bunch of tricky phrases such as:

reQall tricky phrases

You can't beat the price, which as I mentioned, is $0. In my opinion, it would still be a bargain $2.99 a month. But everything I've described so far is yours at absolutely no cost. The application is free; the service is free... how can you beat it? Well, if you want even more reQall goodness, there's also something called reQall Pro that adds a number of powerful features such as:

  • SMS (text) message alerts
  • Additional vocabulary (adds "at home," "at work," "and "places" to words reQall understands)
  • Google and Outlook calendar integration
  • Pro Memory Jogger
  • Location (GPS) based organization
  • Custom groups (i.e. car, homework, etc.)
  • Respond to email reminders to delete or mark as complete.

ReQall Pro costs $2.99 per month or $24.99 per year. I haven't tried it yet but may very well try it soon. Meanwhile, I'm pretty darn happy with the basic service, which offers everything I've described and a whole bunch of other features and costs nothing.

The Bottom Line

I've been using it for a few months now and have seen several free updates and upgrades. I have to tell you, folks, it's just keeps getting better with each new release (the current one is 2.0.4).

How can you not love a free iPhone application/service that is elegant, useful, helpful, easy-to-use, and fun? I recommend it without hesitation -- you'd have to be crazy not to try it.

Just The Facts

reQall from reQall

MSRP Free

Pros:

Superb voice-to-text translation, intelligent handling of reminder items, myriad of delivery options, excellent feature set, free.

Cons:

None to speak of.

5 comments from the community.

You can post your own below.

CCardona said:

“as well as an iCal to-do item (not shown either).” Why don’t you show it?

Not so fast, Bob. Granted, I’ve only had ReQall for one day, but so far subscribing (in iCal) to my ReQall Calendar does NOT sync anything. When you say “Refresh” and the gear spins and goes away real fast, you know it’s not doing anything, (not to mention that you can’t find your ReQall calendar in “Calendar/Online Status”, where your Google calendars are). It should be there, no? Go ahead, prove me wrong (I’d love it!)

You CAN download the calendar, again and again, and duplicate all your previous items, yes that works, but an obviously bad choice. BTW, I’m an ACTC/ACHDS, so I’m pretty good at this stuff. I’ve sent an email to their support line (they have NO phone support, which is another “Con”.)

On the plus side, it is a great To Do/Task solution for the iPhone, which Apple doesn’t see a need for, but which those of us who actually work for a…Oh, I forgot, I’m a victim of the recession, damn! wink

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Bob LeVitus said:

CCardona,

It works for me. I had to refresh the calendar but the reminder not only appeared but was scheduled for the proper day! I just emailed you screen shots to prove it!

Regards,
Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus
smile

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CCardona said:

OK! Got an email from Reqall support - when you subscribe to your iCal Feed, “To Dos” must be unchecked! Works now! Just as Bob said!

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CCardona said:

Sorry, “Strip To Dos” needs to be unchecked.

   Quote

aupair said:

I wasn’t aware of the many ripples and depth to this story until I surfed here through Google! Great job.
Regards,
au pair services

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