Today, SBSH Mobile Software released a new list program. I said “a new list program” on purpose, because in no way it looks like their previous list program HandyList. That’s why SBSH also gave this new product a new name: MyList. I’ve had the pleasure to participate in the beta-testing process, so I was able to get a good look at this new product.
Please read on after the break to find out what I think about MyList, and how to get a discount for MyList!
After downloading the .zip file of OTA (Over The Air) .cab installer, installation is easy. Just like with most other software, you just run the .exe on your PC and follow the steps, or copy the .cab file to your device and run it from there. After installation, you will see a screen asking you for the language you’d like to use, and if MyList should remove the other language resource files. I installed MyList to my SD card so storage space is not really an issue and I kept the language files. However, in the program settings, there is no way to change the language after installation. The developer told me that he plans on working on this, though!
In the main view, when you open MyList, you will see all the lists in the folder that is currently selected. In the top, you can change this folder. MyList will call this folder the “Root” folder, and all sub-folders will be called “Categories”. The example screenshot shows \My Documents\MyList\My Lists\ as Root folder, and it’s sub-folders Personal and Business are the categories. This folder structure is in a ‘tree view’ so you can expand and collapse the categories if you have a lot of lists in a folder. All lists can be assigned a different icon, so you can easily recognise your lists.
The arrow in the top left opens a drop-down menu where the recent Root folders are easily accessible, and you also have the ability to choose a new Root folder here. From this screen you can easily open, rename or delete an existing list or category, or create a new one using the tap-and-hold context menu or the soft-keys in the bottom bar. Creating a new list will require you select a Template which can be created before, or at that time.
The “Menu” soft-key also allows you to import a .csv file, so if you are coming from ListPro or just have other files that you want to import into MyList, you can do that using this feature. For example, Microsoft Excel files can be saved with the .csv file format, so there spreadsheets can also be imported into MyList!
The main view has full D-Pad support, so you can open lists by navigating to a list and pressing the D-Pad, or tapping on it with your stylus.
When you open a list, you get to see exactly what you would expect. On the top, you see the name of the list. Then there is also the total amount of items in the list, and the amount of items that are checked. Under that line, you see the headers. They display the name of each column, and the width of the columns can be changed manually, or automatically (through a context menu or the Menu soft-key). Tapping on the column header sorts the list from A-Z, and tapping again mirrors the sorting behaviour to Z-A. Of course, if your list doesn’t fit on the screen properly, there will be scrollbars available to view those hidden parts.
From this view, you can edit existing items or create a new item. (Double) tapping on an item to open (edit) it did not work, I’d like to see this in a future version. In the New/Edit screen you will see all the fields (column headers) for which information can be added. Depending on your template, you can have some fields to be prepopulated with certain information. For example, in a shopping list, you can have a column contain the $ sign for every new field by default.
The Menu in the List View has several options. In addition to creating new items or
editing/removing existing ones, you can highlight an item. You can choose a pre-defined colour, or pick a custom colour. The colour picker allows you to enter RGB values, a HTML# or just pick the color from a field containing all colors. Of course, removing the highlight can also be easily done this way. I would like to be able to select multiple items from my list, and highlight all of them in one go, but currently you can only select one item at a time.
Through the Menu soft-key you can also pick a new icon for the list, from built-in icon store, or another one that you specified in the Options screen.
Finally, exporting a list to the .csv format is also supported, so you can transfer lists to other programs that you need to use your list with.
From the List View, you can access the Options section of MyList. Under the General section, you can set the font and font size that MyList should use. Also, this is the place to pick the folder that should be used for the Icon Store. Second, under the Colors section, there are some cool customization options. You can change the text colors for the category and list names in the Main View, and for the background and text color in List View. Again, the three options (RGB, HTML# and the Picker) are available to choose the color. I really like how I can use these color options in addition to the highlight, to greatly customize the way my lists look!
Finally, in the Options section we can work on our Templates. Templates are what you need to use as base for your list, since a list will need to know what columns it should have. The top bar shows which folder is currently selected to save your templates, and here you can tap the […] button to select a new one. By storing lists and templates all in seperate files, it’s very easy to share them with other users. I hope that the SBSH Forums will be used to share templates for shopping lists, software registration code databases, etc. SBSH, who is known for their great support and user forums, certainly has the right community for it.
Creating a new template is easy, because you can do all actions from very clean and easily understandable screens. The buttons don’t need any explanation. When you add a new field, you get to choose a field type. You will probably want to use the “String” and “Checkbox” types most, since these give you the most freedom and functionality. For example, for a shopping list you will use a Checkbox to mark items as Complete, and a String in which you can type the needed product names. However, you can also choose other field types, such as Number, Date, Time, and Units. Some of these have pre-defined “Default values” (we’ll get to that), such as the Date field type. Here you can choose to automatically use the date “Today” , “Tomorrow”, “Next Week”, etc. whenever you create a new list item. Useful, isn’t it?!
In addition to setting the field type, you will be able to set the Field Name, which will appear as the column header in your final list (such as “Title” and “Quantity” in the shopping list). Finally, you can set a Default Value for the field, such as the price unit which I mentioned before. This is optional, so you can also just leave this field blank if you want to manually enter information in the field every time you create a new list item.
For some “field types”, there is no option to leave the Default Value empty, but those are fields that have a limited possible content, such as a checkbox which can only be Unchecked or Checked.
Conclusion and product information
MyList is another example of how SBSH can create great quality software that sets itself apart from the rest of the market. Ilium Software ListPro has been the market leader for a long time, so MyList will have to compete with this popular and very complete piece of software. At this moment ListPro has some features that I’d love to see in MyList, such as the ability to convert column types. For example, when you create a column that’s based on the Number field, you can’t enter letters. If for some reason you need to add “15a” to your list, this is just not possible. It would be cool to convert the Number column to a String column, which allows full freedom. However, it’s very easy to base your list on all Strings, in order to have full freedom right from the start. This is something to consider when you create a new template, though.
While MyList does miss some features that ListPro offers, it’s also 25% cheaper. For this price you are allowed all free minor upgrades (2.x) and SBSH’s reputation is to provide quite some cool new features during minor upgrades.
SBSH is known for their frequent updates in which they respond to input from the community, so I’m positive that the most frequently requested features will be the ones with the highest priority to be implemented. MyList is an application with great possibilities, which SBSH can continue to improve based on feedback from the community.
SBSH MyList 2.0 is available from SBSH for $14.95.
If you are a SBSH forum member you can get MyList 2.0 for $ 10.46 (which is a 30% discount) from this URL.
And, finally, if you are already a registered user for HandyList, you can expect an e-mail from SBSH within 72 hours with details on how to get a free upgrade to MyList 2!
It will run on Pocket PC’s with Windows Mobile 2003, WM 2003 SE, WM 5 and WM 6 Classic and Professional (Touch screen devices). VGA, QVGA, and all screen resolutions are supported.