I have 3 computers. I use them all. My kids share a laptop (I have 2 kids) and then my husband uses the downstairs computer. That’s 5 computers, for a 4 person household. Not to mention phones (I currently have 2 that I use regularly), tablets, the Roku, Playstation, xbox, you are getting the idea, right? So I need solutions that not only go to my phone, but my PC, and my other PC, and my tablet, etc. So I’ve been thinking about what are the tools that I use that can span multiple platforms. Cause once I go all in with a tool, I need to be able to access it anywhere.
To Do Lists
I use ToodleDo.com for my to do lists. Not only can I access the list from my PC, from Chrome, from my Android device (with an app called Due Today) and from my Windows Phone (with an app called Viperal Tasks) device (I’ve heard they have an iOS app too, but who can be bothered with those sorts of things). My To Do list is robust with recurring tasks, categories, etc. This is the best solution I have found, and of course it spans all platforms.
All praise to the Google Gods for these calendars. I seriously have at least 20 calendars associated with my Google account. The day I figured out how to sync my Windows 8 calendar with all my Google Calendars was such a blessed and happy day. Not only can I access it (with a little hacking trick) from my Windows 8 PC and my Windows Phone 8, it syncs BEAUTIFULLY with my Android devices. Obviously it would, considering the source.
Evernote. There is really nothing more to say about this. It is available on EVERY SINGLE PLATFORM known to man. Plus it’s an incredible way to store your notes. It’s searchable, and extremely easy to find things you have added. I can store everything in there from recipes to articles I want to reference for future posts, even to voice memos from my phone. It really is the ultimate place for a paperless person.
Here’s where I’m not quite where I want to be yet, but it’s getting there. I tried to like xbox music. I really did. I put ALL of my thousands of songs on my Windows 8 computer. I created playlists (as difficult as it was to do so) in the xbox music app on Windows 8. It’s just not there yet. The Zune software was fantastic. THIS? Not so much. I’m planning on a whole post about what a fail it is (and this coming from ME… diehard Microsoft fangirl!) While I am loyal… I’m not going to promote something terrible, or have the blinders that Apple fans seem to wear. I’ll call it what it is… an impressive fail. So, what I’ve done is upload everything to Google Play. It’s fantabulous!! I mean it. I could not ask for a better system. My songs uploaded perfectly, playlist creation was a breeze, I can pin various playlists to my phone so I don’t have to stream them when I’m in the car, it’s seriously great. Plus with the desktop application in Windows 8, I can listen to the music on my Windows 8 PC. The only place I can’t access the music is my Windows Phone 8. It’s not a super big deal to me though for 2 reasons, 1) my xbox music playlists weren’t syncing properly ANYWAY, so it’s not a huge deal that I can’t get my Google Music either. 2) I wasn’t able to “pin” my playlist from xbox music to the phone so that I wouldn’t have to stream it, so trying to listen to it on the road was near to impossible (since it’s been super stormy here in Utah and the cell service has been extremely spotty). So as soon as Google creates an app on Windows Phone 8 I’m kinda stuck on that one (for the record, I don’t see them creating an app for a while, if ever)
Currently I’m using MyFitnessPal. I love it for many reasons… first it syncs with my fitbit (which I’m totally going to write another post about, because I LOVES it!), it also syncs with Runtastic Pro, which I use to track my running. There is a Windows Phone 8 app, and android app, and I can hop online to track it too.
I am a huge fan of Dropbox. When I take a picture from either my Samsung Galaxy Camera, or my HTC EVO 4G LTE, it automatically gets uploaded to Dropbox! I love that i don’t even have to plug my phone or my camera in to be able to put a picture into a post. It automatically syncs up with my Dropbox folder on my desktop, even on ALL of my desktops. Skydrive is coming up there too. I like that Skydrive is available on both Android and Windows devices, and if you are exclusively using a Windows Phone, Skydrive is going to be your best option, as it automatically uploads the photos to skydrive from your phone.
So basically there it is. All of the applications you need to live a cross platform life! I love competition in the tech space, and when these companies allow YOU the choice of what platform you prefer, everybody wins (except of course for those people who make junky products 😉 )
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive compensation if you make a purchase using the links.
Sarah Kimmel is a digital parenting coach and family tech expert. She has spent the last 16 years of her career as a Microsoft Certified IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech LLC to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a family tech expert on KSL News, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website SarahKimmel.com