Living life as a Google user, part one: Thanks for reminding me

Google_user

After having spent a little more than one week getting used to the way that Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich works on my new Galaxy Nexus, I have decided that it's time I set it up to efficiently sync my information across all of my devices – starting with reminding my forgetful self to do things.

With iOS, I was able to use Apple's Reminders app to remind me of things on my phone and on any other device that was synced with my iCloud account. Now, I'm using Android; since Google has its own services like Tasks and Gmail that can do it all (and more) across any operating system, I've switched over to those services and left iCloud in the dust.

I've been a Gmail user for a long time since I believe it's the best email service out there. That account had been set up on my Macs, iPad, and Galaxy Nexus before writing this post, so I didn't need to do much more than download K-9 email (thanks to the recommendation of fixup on this post) and enter my credentials. But Gmail is much more than just email: there are sub-services within Gmail that I can use to replace some of what I was used to in iOS. 

This post is about reminders, so I'm obviously talking about Google Tasks. It's very similar to Apple's Reminders: you enter your task and enter your "due date," or when you want this task to be completed. When you're done, you just click the little check and that task has ended. 

Like I said, being able to access reminders across my operating systems of choice is important to me. For the desktop, there are numerous ways to do this, but I've chosen to just go through the browser version of Gmail since it's the quickest way and I don't have to use Adobe's horrible Air platform. 

Tasks

This is the web interface for Tasks. This picture is a combination of two pictures of the same pop-up, but each side was taken at different times. The left part of the picture where the task is highlighted in yellow was taken before that task was completed; the right, when it was completed. 

On my Galaxy Nexus, I use an app called Notes for ICS with Tasks sync. The name is quite a mouthful, but really, it's one of the simplest apps I have on my phone. It also looks fantastic, which means that it's easy to navigate and get things done.

Tasks_2

Here is Notes. This picture is set up in the same way that the picture above it is. Again, it's just a clean, simple way for tasks to be viewed and completed. 

Reminders are very important to me, and I loved Apple's implementation of them in iOS 5. But since I'm not using that operating system anymore, I'm very glad that I was able to find an alternative that all of my devices will be able to use. 

I live a busy life, so the time I can use to customize my Android experience is limited. This didn't take any longer than five minutes to set up, which isn't a long period of time for most people. I hope that other Google "replacement" services will be as easy to set up so I can finally feel comfortable using Android. 

In the coming days be sure to look for more of my "Living life as a Google user" posts. I don't know how long this series will be (I mean, there are only so many services I can cram into my life) but whenever I find a suitable replacement for a service I was used to on iOS, I'll be sure to write about it.

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Calob Horton

Calob Horton is an associate editor at Pocketables. He loves all technology, no matter which company it comes from. This unbiased view of the tech world allows him to choose the products that best fit his personal needs and tastes: a Microsoft Surface Pro, a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, and a third-gen iPad.Google+ | Twitter | More posts by Calob | Subscribe to Calob's posts