There are a lot of calendar apps, but it’s hard to get all of your events in one place. Finding a single app that syncs with everything is a big enough challenge. Now try presenting all those events and information from all over in a truly meaningful way, and you have a real job on your hands.
More than just a calendar app, Cue: Know What’s Next will sync not only all of your events in one place but just about any information you could need during your day. What Cue does is give context to your events, turning a calendar reminder into a chance to connect and engage.
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Getting Started with Cue
Cue’s going to prompt you to start connecting your accounts the first time you log in. It starts with the big three for Cue: Google Calendar, Google Apps Calendar and iOS Calendar. It’s easy enough to link Cue and iOS Calendar, but if you want Google Calendar too, you’re going to have to sign in. After that, Cue will ask which of Google’s services you’d like linked, including Gmail and Docs.
After that’s done, you can link to some additional accounts, including Dropbox, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. If you upgrade to premium, starting out at $4.99 a month, you’ll have access to a lot more account types, including Evernote, Basecamp and others.
Once you’re signed in to your various accounts, it’s going to take a little while for all of that information to make its way into Cue. I just set my phone down and walked away for a bit, because constantly opening and closing the day’s calendar and waiting for my events to appear didn’t seem to be helping the process.
Everything in One Place
The beauty of Cue is that it doesn’t just pull all of your events from your various calendars into a single place, but it also gets all the data associated with those events and puts that at your fingertips, too. So if you’re having a meeting with Mike Scott at 2:00PM, Cue links all of Mike’s contact information to the event automatically. If his LinkedIn or other social media profiles are available, those will be there too, handy if you’re meeting Mike for the first time or need to familiarize yourself with his background.
I couldn’t figure out at first why Cue wanted to get into my Dropbox account. It’s because Cue can connect to Dropbox, Evernote (with a premium account), your email,and lots of other services, and if there are files or links associated with a calendar event, Cue will make sure it finds those and has them ready.
Cue will even create events based on information it finds in your email and via the other linked services. For instance, I was shocked to find an event for an Amazon delivery. I mean, I did pre-order an Xbox game for my husband’s birthday, but I hadn’t created that event. Cue had found the confirmation email in my Gmail account and created a delivery event all on its own.
While I’m loathe to start connecting my Facebook to every app that asks, this was an exception. Though I start with the best intentions of saving my Facebook events on a calendar I actually use so I’ll remember birthdays and baby showers, I just don’t do it often enough. Left to my own devices, I inevitably forget about some big get together until Facebook reminds me the day of. Cue, however, pops all those events into a single calendar with the rest of my events so I don’t even have to think about it.
The Confusions of Multiple Accounts
Cue got confused for a while and thought I was a cat. I assume this was because when my cat signed up for Twitter, he used my email address. Cue assigned my phone number and a lot of my personal information to my cat. It listed my cat as the event planner for just about everything in my calendar. Despite having access to my iOS Contacts, which includes a contact for me, Cue was still thrown. I unlinked Twitter and things seemed to go back to how they should be eventually.
While this was amusing to my friends and caused no real problems for me, it’s not uncommon for one person to maintain more than one Twitter account, email account, Facebook, or various other linkable services. It’s 100% understandable that Cue made this mistake, but there wasn’t a way for me to rectify it manually. So if your friend happens to use his personal email address to run his software company’s Twitter or other social media account, you might find yourself being prompted to wish a very happy birthday to Softconware Media instead of Joe Smith.
Overall, Cue is a great tool to have. I was constantly surprised at the information it pulled up from my various services for all of my events. Even just finding the names and contact info for the people attending meetings was a huge help, but so was access to their LinkedIn profiles for a bit of biographical information before I even said hello.
The ease with which I was able to keep up with events on not only my main calendar but all the other places events get stuck and then forgotten was enough to sell me on Cue without the bonus contact and file linking. Because I use Google Calendar for personal events but my office relies on Outlook, things often fall through the cracks. With Cue, a few clicks and I know what’s on my plate for the next several days on all of my calendars.
To get the most out of Cue, though, you’re going to need a premium membership — that’ll run you as much as $50 a year. Even so, the free features are enough to really get you started and more than enough if you just need to get everything on one page.