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  1.    #1  
    A few days ago, Picsel released their Picsel Smart Office app to phones (yes, you have to buy it again if you bought it on your Touchpad). First thing, when I installed and launched it, I did get the red screen of death. However, I left it over the weekend and launched it again this morning and it works just fine. Giving it a whirl, this app is so incredibly good I couldn't believe someone would take the time to develop it for webOS phones. For this, Picsel gets infinite good karma in my book. Heck, they can abandon the app right now if they want: it's so good it doesn't need much in the way of updates.

    The thing that impressed me first about this app is that it's fast. It blows the webOS office apps completely out of the water. The interface is very polished and you can do pretty much anything without lag.

    The first thing I did when I launched the app was tap Help in the header. This brings up a full guide, 25 pages long, detailing all the features of the app. Something I found just trying to zoom in and out to read text is that if you zoom out even further, you get all your pages arranged in a grid (again, it does this incredibly fast for a phone). This opens a new way of navigation. Zoom out to grid view and zoom in to the page you want to view. They also have a Pages navigation, where if you tap Pages in the header, it brings up a 3D view of all pages organized in a caroussel-type manner, and you can swipe to the page you want to view (did I mention how quick it was?).

    Next, I tried New Document. You have the option to create new blank Word, Powerpoint, and Excel documents, or use templates. As nice as the app is, I wouldn't recommend it for creating new documents. Unfortunately, the screen is too small to type a full document without zooming in and out a hundred times. But, for editing, this app is great to have while you're on your way to the office. Tap any text, and two circles show up allowing you to quickly select and edit large portions of text. You have the major editing options available, including a few of the most-used fonts.

    For powerpoint, you have pretty much the same editing options. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a way to edit slideshow transitions in powerpoint, but you still have the option of viewing your poweropint as a slideshow. You can rehearse a presentation on your way to the office from your phone. Just like text documents had the caroussel navigation, powerpoints have a quick way of navigating slides. You can zoom out to show a grid view of slides, or press the Slides button to show a small list view.

    Spreadsheets are also nice to have, but as with word documents, it's best to create new spreadsheets on the desktop, and use Picsel to edit them on the go. One reason for this is that you have to keep the shift key held for upper case, and the orange key held for numbers and symbols. Especially in a spreadsheet, where you're dealing with a lot of numbers, this can get very cumbersome. But for editing existing spreadsheets, Picsel is great. It even renders graphs you add to your spreadsheet (and rather quickly as well). Unfortunately, it doesn't look like you can format those graphs. Tapping on the graph only focuses the cell behind the graph. But, if you edit the table cells from which the graph gets its data, the graph gets updated immediately to reflect the updated data.


    The other options in the menu are for My Documents, Recent Documents, DropBox, and Google Docs. First, I'll touch on the online syncing options. Unfortunately, I couldn't remember my DropBox credentials, but I could test Google Docs and it's as fast as using a document on-device (I was on wi-fi). Unfortunately, it looks like you can't sync documents to Google Docs. If you edit, you only have the option to save locally.

    For My Documents, you are presented with a list of your folders that you have in your device's USB partition. If there's anything Picsel can't open, it has a question mark icon next to the filename. However, if it can open that file, it has an icon related to the file. Image files have a picture icon, office files and their respective files have their default icons, and so on. There are a couple of pleasant surprises I found here.

    First, you can open zipped files. They will show up with a zipper icon, and when you open them it's like opening a regular folder. You get a list of files in the zip archive and can open them like any other file. Unfortunately, you can't edit zipped documents and you can't extract and save them, but it is a great option to have.

    Second, and I think this is my favorite Picsel feature, you can view PDF documents. Like, actually view them. ALL OF THEM. Anyone who's used the PDF reader on their webOS phone knows what it's like. You hope it can read the file and when it can, it's a PITA to use. With Picsel, you have an incredible PDF viewer. From a UI perspective, PDFs are treated like any other document. You can view and navigate PDFs just as easily as you would a text file. You have the pages caroussel. You have the grid view. You can zoom in and out so quickly you can't even believe you're viewing a PDF on your webOS phone. You can search text for anything, and Picsel finds it really quickly. For example, I opened a PDF for an ebook on programming. I tapped File->Find, then typed hello world, the typical first program. It found the first occurrence, 'Hello World', on page 23 of a 118-pages long PDF in seconds. It zoomed in to 'Hello World'. When I tapped next, the next occurrence was in the same page, so Picsel fluidly scrolled within the page to the next occurrence. In fact, most of the time is spent just scrolling to the next occurrence. Once Picsel finds each occurrence, it appears to cache the results so it finds next and previous instantly. With Picsel, we finally have a great PDF reader for our webOS phones. I can now confidently open a PDF file hundreds of pages long, knowing that it will open each time, it will be easy to navigate, and I won't end up cursing at the phone. For that, great job Picsel.

    For $10, you get so many features it's practically a steal. When you have a company that can knock it out months after releasing the tablet version, you have to wonder both what the heck Palm (and then HP) was thinking not hiring these guys, and what the heck DocsToGo and Quickoffice were doing. Especially Quickoffice, which HP touted as a partner and highlighted their hybrid app. It took Quickoffice so long to make a good product, and Picsel comes along and blows them out of the water.

    This app is just too good on the phone, and if you haven't bought it yet, then what are you waiting for? GET IT! Even if you already bought the Touchpad version, buy the phone version and support these great developers. You will not be disappointed. All the shortcomings I pointed out are nothing compared with the great features you have available. It's one of the best apps I've used on my Pre 2, and it's a must-buy.
  2. spud101's Avatar
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    #2  
    I'm planning to buy this soon too. You just encouraged me even more
  3. #3  
    Thanks for the review. Are you working at Picsel :-)
  4.    #4  
    Heh, I wish I could've gotten paid to do this review.

    The one thing that was weird was that red screen of death. I was about to brush it aside as a wasted purchase, but since I didn't need it, I left it over the weekend and fired it up this morning. Worked just fine. You might need to restart the app or maybe there was just a bad connection to webOS HQ at the time that caused hiccups in the license check. The way I understand it, it only needs to confirm your license once. As soon as it does, it knows you bought the app from that moment forward.

    But after using the app a bit, it was just so good I felt motivated to do a review. I said the app doesn't need much in the way of improvements, and for the most part that is true. The only weakness I could find was that it's not the easiest thing to do to create new documents and edit them exclusively in the app.
    Last edited by rsanchez1; 12/05/2011 at 02:37 PM.
  5. #5  
    Thanks and good you've understand my "joke". I had the RSOD on my TP. Next day it was working just fine. I really liked your review even it was quite long. But I red it in the subway and was surprised how fast I was at my destination ;-)
  6. #6  
    I purchased this app last week for my Pre 3 and as stated above, the PDF reader kick *****. One nice feature is you can now view docs in landscape view. One thing about the Pre 3, how does one save an attachment in the email app. The only way I figured how to do it so I can view docs with SmartOffice is to first open the doc with Quick Office and then save it. When I try the "tap and hold" on the attachment in the email on my Pre 3, nothing happens. Can a patch be made to add the "Tap and hold" feature or some method to be able to save attachments in the Pre 3 email app?
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by netwrkr9 View Post
    I purchased this app last week for my Pre 3 and as stated above, the PDF reader kick *****. One nice feature is you can now view docs in landscape view. One thing about the Pre 3, how does one save an attachment in the email app. The only way I figured how to do it so I can view docs with SmartOffice is to first open the doc with Quick Office and then save it. When I try the "tap and hold" on the attachment in the email on my Pre 3, nothing happens. Can a patch be made to add the "Tap and hold" feature or some method to be able to save attachments in the Pre 3 email app?
    Jason wrote a patch that downloads all email attachments to the downloads folder once you've tapped on them to download in the email app once. It's extremely useful. I'd suggest you just install that.
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by volcom45 View Post
    Jason wrote a patch that downloads all email attachments to the downloads folder once you've tapped on them to download in the email app once. It's extremely useful. I'd suggest you just install that.
    Is that patch in Preware or on WOQI and is it available for the Pre 3 too? Thx

    never mind, found it in Jasons forum, thx again for the heads up
    Last edited by netwrkr9; 12/05/2011 at 03:43 PM.
    Volcom45 likes this.
  9. #9  
    Too bad it doesn't run on the webOS 1.4.5. I would VERY rarely use a doc editor on a cell phone, but I'd buy it just because.

    Is the Pre2 the minimum hardware required?
    "Sometimes I feel like an OS-less child..."
    (with apologies to Billie Holiday )
  10. airotkiv's Avatar
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    #10  
    This is just soo wonderful that I am about to cry. This app has everything I eves wished for -- and it is soo far away... Now I seek helpful people to whom I could paypal the price of the app and who would in exchange download it for me, since I have no UK credit card and no UK SIM, although my PRE3 was activated in the Kingdom (therefore geolocated there, which just sucks). Anyone out there? Pretty please?
  11. #11  
    People should beware that there is no guarantee that the app will work for you and you may end up just wasting your $10 on this app. I bought this app on the TouchPad just a couple of days after it was first launched and it has yet to work. Even after the recent update, all I still get is the stupid red screen. I seriously don't understand how this company is being allowed to get away by selling a product that does not work at all.
    Pre3 (AT&T meta-doctored to ROW) webOS 2.2.4 build 3175
    TouchPad WiFi (32GB) - webOS 3.0.5 build 86
    App Catalog (US) - Vodafone (India)

    Treo 180 > 270 > 600 > 650 > 680 > Pre+ > Pre2 > Pre+ > Pre3 & tPad
  12. airotkiv's Avatar
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    #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by Sanjay View Post
    People should beware that there is no guarantee that the app will work for you and you may end up just wasting your $10 on this app. I bought this app on the TouchPad just a couple of days after it was first launched and it has yet to work. Even after the recent update, all I still get is the stupid red screen. I seriously don't understand how this company is being allowed to get away by selling a product that does not work at all.
    I take the risk, very well... I got my Pre3 in exchange of om Treo 680 which had DocsToGo, and for me doc editing is a must. I travel a lot, and would not use a netbook if I could use a smartphone...
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by volcom45 View Post
    Jason wrote a patch that downloads all email attachments to the downloads folder once you've tapped on them to download in the email app once. It's extremely useful. I'd suggest you just install that.
    You don't need the patch on the pre 3 ... Press option and tap on the attachment and it asks you to save it

    -- Sent from my Palm Pre3 using Forums
  14.    #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Sanjay View Post
    People should beware that there is no guarantee that the app will work for you and you may end up just wasting your $10 on this app. I bought this app on the TouchPad just a couple of days after it was first launched and it has yet to work. Even after the recent update, all I still get is the stupid red screen. I seriously don't understand how this company is being allowed to get away by selling a product that does not work at all.
    Happened to me too, and happened to somline as well, but luckily for both of us it resolved itself. Maybe try uninstalling and re-installing, or rebooting your Touchpad.

    The fault is not with Picsel, it's with HP. Once the API works, it should just work as long as you have the app. The licensing API communicates with HP's servers to verify that a user bought the app. It might be the whole backup server issue causing problems with the verification API as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by airotkiv View Post
    This is just soo wonderful that I am about to cry. This app has everything I eves wished for -- and it is soo far away... Now I seek helpful people to whom I could paypal the price of the app and who would in exchange download it for me, since I have no UK credit card and no UK SIM, although my PRE3 was activated in the Kingdom (therefore geolocated there, which just sucks). Anyone out there? Pretty please?
    Unfortunately, I think you're out of luck here. The same API that causes the red screen of death will cause that for you as long as you haven't bought the app from your Palm Profile. Unless you're willing to trust someone online to "borrow" your Palm Profile for a bit and buy the app on a US-activated device, but then I'm not sure that would even work.

    Quote Originally Posted by C-Note View Post
    Too bad it doesn't run on the webOS 1.4.5. I would VERY rarely use a doc editor on a cell phone, but I'd buy it just because.

    Is the Pre2 the minimum hardware required?
    Too bad there's no way to test, but there's nothing indicating that it won't work on 1.4.5. Maybe it won't, and maybe Picsel wanted to work with HP to make it work, but HP refuses to acknowledge that 1.4.5 even exists anymore. I keep trying to get one of my hybrid apps approved for 1.4.5, for example, but they stubbornly refuse for some stupid reason or another. Either that, or because HP refuses to acknowledge that 1.4.5 exists, they don't care enough to ask Picsel to port to 1.4.5.



    The common thread here is that it's always HP that prevents the best user experience.
  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by sketch42 View Post
    You don't need the patch on the pre 3 ... Press option and tap on the attachment and it asks you to save it

    -- Sent from my Palm Pre3 using Forums
    Thx for the help sketch42, one thing that is different from my TouchPad is that when I save the attachment on my Pre 3, it puts the file in my download folder with my 2 thousand plus songs and other downloaded files. Should I create a music folder and put my songs in there?
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by rsanchez1 View Post
    Happened to me too, and happened to somline as well, but luckily for both of us it resolved itself. Maybe try uninstalling and re-installing, or rebooting your Touchpad.
    I have tried all of the following, to no avail:
    1. Rebooting the TouchPad
    2. Updating to the new version
    3. Uninstalling and re-installing
    4. Uninstalling and re-installing after a reboot.

    BIG FAIL.

    Quote Originally Posted by rsanchez1 View Post
    The fault is not with Picsel, it's with HP. Once the API works, it should just work as long as you have the app. The licensing API communicates with HP's servers to verify that a user bought the app. It might be the whole backup server issue causing problems with the verification API as well.
    I am sorry but I disagree. Picsel is responsible for their app and for the money that they have taken from me. First of all, why is it that their app is the only one amongst thousands of webOS apps, to have this problem? Even if there is a webOS problem with purchase verification, then Picsel should find an alternate way to do the verification. If they are unable to find a working alternate, then they should eliminate the verification process from their app. This would be more ethical than making their paying customers suffer. But obviously Picsel would much rather rip off their customers, than risk having a few people pirate their app.
    Pre3 (AT&T meta-doctored to ROW) webOS 2.2.4 build 3175
    TouchPad WiFi (32GB) - webOS 3.0.5 build 86
    App Catalog (US) - Vodafone (India)

    Treo 180 > 270 > 600 > 650 > 680 > Pre+ > Pre2 > Pre+ > Pre3 & tPad
    capape likes this.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by netwrkr9 View Post
    Thx for the help sketch42, one thing that is different from my TouchPad is that when I save the attachment on my Pre 3, it puts the file in my download folder with my 2 thousand plus songs and other downloaded files. Should I create a music folder and put my songs in there?
    That would probably be easiest ..

    Or even easier.. Would be to Rename your current download folder to Music & make a new download folder and move the docs there



    -- Sent from my Palm Pre3 using Forums
  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by sketch42 View Post
    You don't need the patch on the pre 3 ... Press option and tap on the attachment and it asks you to save it

    -- Sent from my Palm Pre3 using Forums
    oh one last thing.. You have to have opened the attachment once in order for option + Tap to work... (at least on 2.2.0)
  19. #19  
    I've just solved the RSOD problem with phone SmartOffice. I've changed my carrier sim (Simyo) with one of the company which my Pre2 was activated (Movistar Spain), reboot my Pre2 and then SmartOffice was working.

    After that I've replaced Movistar Sim with Simyo Sim and reboot again. Now I have SmartOffice working!!
    Last edited by capape; 12/06/2011 at 06:01 AM.
  20. #20  
    Not possible to set it as default for docs/pdfs right?

    -- Sent from my Palm Pre using Forums
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