It's finally here: the app version of Google Calendar!
For me, the calendar is one of the most important features on my smartphone. Being a heavy user of Google Calendar, I'm going to give an in-depth look at how the Google Calendar app stacks up with the popular Jorte calendar app and the web version of Google Calendar.
First up, monthly view. The most important factor here is event visibility.
In all the screenshots in this article, the Google Calendar app (GC app) is on the left, Jorte is in the middle, and the Google Calendar web version (web GC) is on the right.
The GC app favors simplicity, while Jorte tries to cram as much info as possible onto the screen.
The GC app wants you to use the daily or list views for details, but Jorte and web GC show daily info in the bottom half of the screen. Jorte has problems showing large numbers of events, but web GC lets you scroll to view everything.
In the monthly view, Jorte squeezes your event info into each day on the calendar, meaning those with empty calendars can use Jorte's monthly view to get a quick idea of their entire month.
For someone like me with tons of daily events, all this extra information at a glance means Jorte's monthly view is definitely the best.
Next up, weekly view. The GC app and Jorte definitely show their stylistic differences here, but unfortunately web GC doesn't have a weekly view. With weekly view as well, Jorte wins in terms of the sheer amount of information shown on screen. This comes down to preference, but the GC app's minimalist style and colorfulness make it hard to count out.
I'd call weekly view a tie between the GC app and Jorte. I find looking at the weekly views for both apps in landscape orientation a bit easier on the eyes.
Next level: daily view. Jorte also has a daily view that you can access by tapping on a day in monthly or weekly view, but I've included it in the next section rather than here.
Why categorize differently, you ask? Jorte's daily view is simply a list of events, whereas the GC app visually shows you how much time each event lasts and how much time you have free between events. The web GC is actually lacking in this area as well, so the GC app gets the undisputed win in this category.
List view is up next. Jorte syncs with Google Calendar, but the calendar stored in Jorte acts as the main calendar, and Google Calendar is used more as a backup. As such, if you use Jorte as your main calendar app, you can go nuts with tons of different colors and icons, but those who rely on Google Calendar and merely use Jorte to access their calendar on their smartphone may find the GC app offers a more faithful representation of their schedule.
As someone who relies heavily on Google Calendar, the GC app picks up the win for list view.
And finally, creating new events.
Here, we can see the GC app still favors clean minimalism and that Jorte does in fact offer icon customization for events.
For those who use their smartphone to handle all their scheduling, I think Jorte meets their needs best. However, for people who use Google Calendar on their computer as well, like I do, Jorte loses a bit of info when importing and exporting with Google Calendar. For me, the GC app wins here.
For some reason, the GC app supports only the newest versions of Android (4.0.3 and higher), but its polished design really makes it shine.
Those of you that are interested in using the GC app are probably users who already use the Google cloud for much of your calendaring needs.
However, the basic functions of the Google Calendar app don't differ much from most default smartphone calendar apps, and the web GC is viewable offline through caching, so there's also the question as to whether making a separate Google Calendar app was even necessary.
For users like me who are often adding and editing events, it may be best to put a bookmark to the web GC on your homescreen so you don't have to worry about sync and update lag. But for design and functionality, the GC app can't be beat, and I can't wait to see what updates come in the future.
- ・Home Screen Getting Crowded? Try Kalenda!, a Convenient Calendar App That Can Be Placed on the Top Bar.
- ・Moe Goe Calendar Will Make You a Frequent Schedule Checker
- ・Not Just Another Calendar App with Nice Photos. Official JAL App, JAL Schedule for Travelers.
Time used: about 3 hours
Device used: HTC J ISW13HT
Publisher: Google Inc.
Last updated: 10/17/2012
Compatibility: Android 4.0.3 or higher
Translation by Jason Morgan