Verizon Wireless Sync with TREO 600 - Problems

Verizon has a new feature from Intellisync called Wireless Sync that allows wireless synchronization of various PDA devices to a Microsoft Outlook and (optionally) a bunch of external POP or IMAP e-mail accounts. This sounds really great, but what is simply RIDICULOUS is that it only works with Outlook if you are running on Exchange (which i am not). So for exchange users, you get wireless, automated synchronization of contacts, calendar, notes, tasks, and external POP/IMAP accounts.

But for those of us who use Outlook and are not on Exchange, simply installing the wireless sync product can potentially wipe out all of your organizational data, so BE CAREFUL! Installation will proceed smoothly despite lack of Exchange-ness until you try to monitor an account on your PC, which will fail with the wonderful error message: "Unable to open Outlook Address Book."

If you use wireless sync on your TREO 600 and select "Yes" to delete current PIM data and seed from synchronization, you will lose all of your calendar information and the sync of course won't work since there is no data coming from Outlook to Wireless Sync.

Here's what I did to maintain PUSH e-mail syncing, manual hotsync with my non-Exchange Outlook installation, and wireless synchronization from the TREO to Verizon Wireless Sync's web interface (but no sync'ing from the desktop PC to Wireless Sync):

  1. Install Verizon Wireless Sync client from VZW's website, with no PC monitoring (a client will get installed anyway).
  2. Hotsync once to install Wireless Sync and Mail on your TREO
  3. Run Wireless Sync. When it asks you if you want to clear its data to avoid duplication of data, select NO.
  4. Uninstall Verizon Wireless Sync Client from PC. Turning off Wireless Sync during Hotsync may also do the trick.
  5. Change all of Hotsync's Outlook conduits to synchronize by default (they will all have been turned off by Wireless Sync's destructive install).

Now you will have the following synchronizations in effect:

  1. Hotsync's Pocketmirror synchronization of contacts, calendar, notes, and todo list between Outlook and TREO
  2. Wireless Sync installed on handheld for synchronization of e-mail, contacts, calendar, notes, and todo list between TREO and VZW Wireless Sync website.

This is a good thing, I think.

This means that if I make a change on a contact in Outlook, it will migrate to the VZW site after I Hotsync and then initiate a Wireless Sync on my TREO.

If I make a change to an appointment on the website, it will migrate to Outlook when I Wireless Sync and then Hotsync.

Making a change on the TREO should migrate both to Outlook after a Hotsync and to the Wireless Sync website after a Wireless Sync.

New POP e-mail is checked every 15 minutes by VZW's website, and can easily be sync'ed with my TREO. HOWEVER, I believe that this only happens when the client is installed on the PC, which would mean that only new mail delivered to an Outlook inbox using Exchange will lead to a PUSH command. If it doesn't do it automatically, then SnapperMail is probably be a better e-mail solution.

But I'm really liking that I can easily sync all my data from Outlook to VZW's website so I can access all of my PIM data from any web terminal. Maybe it's all stupid and useless, though, if it doesn't auto-sync.

Yeah. I hate technology. Why can't all this crap just work out of the box?

*UPDATE* My Mail app is reporting a synchronization action at 12:15am this morning (10 minutes ago). Perhaps it checks in daily or something, because it's also reporting 0 PUSH messages. Strange...

*UPDATE* With each daily synchronization, the Mail app takes over as the default button for the Mail button. Very annoying.