Scheduling An Appointment With Vlingo And The iPhone Four
I don’t have Siri because I don’t have an iPhone 4s. I don’t plan on getting an iPhone 4s just because I don’t have Siri -I’m going to wait until the next “big” iPhone release… I do, however, have the need to schedule appointments into my Apple Calendar via voice with my iPhone 4 AND THAT, in my experience, is fairly difficult to do without Siri… I’ve been using a relatively simple solution that I didn’t think was so innovative, but every time somebody witnesses me using it they seem impressed; so, I’m going to pass along how I’m accomplishing this as a post here at MusTech.Net.
Vlingo (A Siri competitor) does a number of amazing things, but adding an appointment to your built-in calendar(s) is not one of them. I also do not jail-break my iPhones (for a number of reasons) so I can’t use any of the off-the-market apps such as Sara either…
Here is the list of what you need to implement my solution with Vlingo:
- an iPhone
- Vlingo (FREE iPhone app)
- a dedicated Gmail (or other non-used) e-mail account
- Add the new e-mail (dedicated for calendar) to your iPhone in the Mail Settings
- Create a contact, “ME”, on your iPhone and add your newly created e-mail account to the contact
- Use Vlingo to e-mail yourself an appointment in this way (Touch “Press & Speak” on the Vlingo app to start):
EMAIL “ME”, SUBJECT “Administration Appointment”, MESSAGE “July 30th 2012 4:00 p.m.”
*You need to say the above “message” with little pause or interruption…
- Vlingo will now e-mail your dedicated Gmail account the appointment. The subject text (above) will be “administration appointment” and the message itself will become a CLICKABLE/TOUCHABLE TIME and DATE stamp.
- Now, simply touch the link and you will be prompted to create an EVENT with the SUBJECT TEXT automatically appearing as the TITLE of the EVENT and the START/ENDS times correctly filled-in. Voila! –a pretty smooth alternative.
As another note, I have my main e-mail accounts turned off in the “Fetch New Data” section of the ADVANCED e-mail settings (i.e. I manually retrieve the e-mail from those accounts). The exception to this is my calendar specific e-mail account. I have this set to fetch/push those e-mails/messages to me every hour. In this way, I can be prompted to input (and remember) my e-mail appointments into my calendar.
Perhaps it’s not the best solution out there for non-Siri and/or non-jail-broken iPhones, but it is working well for me. I welcome your thoughts on an alternative, better way, and/or other solutions for freely scheduling voice appointments with the pre-iPhone 4s’ in the comment section below. Also, if this solution works for you too, I would love to know.
Joseph M. Pisano, Ph.D. is the creator of many education websites, a lecturer, clinician, trumpeter, and conductor. He is currently the Associate Chair of Music and Director of Bands in the Calderwood School of Arts at Grove City College in PA. He been named a TI:ME Teacher of the Year, received the JEN Jazz Educator Award and the PA Citation of Excellence. He is a past Vice President of the Technology Institute for Music Educators and the current Vice-President of the PA Intercollegiate Bandmasters Association. He also writes for DCI Magazine, Teaching Music Magazine, and is the Educational Editor for In-Tune Monthly Magazine; he has contributed hundreds of articles to various publications. Find out more at his website jpisano.com.