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VIPorbit review: Get to work on your relationships

Jeffery Battersby | Jan. 16, 2014
You're excused for assuming that VIPOrbit is a business-use only, comprehensive customer and contact relationship management tool for Mac and iOS. While it's true that it helps you track your interaction with customers and clients, integrates with a variety of social media tools and Skype, VIPOrbit is designed to help you track of all your relationships, whether they are personal, social or business-related.

You're excused for assuming that VIPOrbit is a business-use only, comprehensive customer and contact relationship management tool for Mac and iOS. While it's true that it helps you track your interaction with customers and clients, integrates with a variety of social media tools and Skype, VIPOrbit is designed to help you track of all your relationships, whether they are personal, social or business-related.

VIPOrbit was developed in part by one of the original creators of ACT!, a relationship management tool, once available for the Mac. The VIPOrbit universe consists of a free iPhone app, a $20 iPad app (a limited version is free to download, but you have to pay to use the full iPad version) and a $50 Mac app. These apps are linked using the free VIPsync service that synchronizes changes your make using any of your devices. The Mac app is designed to be the center of the VIPorbit universe, with the iOS apps syncing with a primary data set created on your Mac. Once all your devices are linked and syncing, changes you make using one device are synced across all your connected devices.

When you first set up the app on your Mac, you have the option of entering your contact data manually or importing it from other data sources. Data can be imported from Apple's Contacts app, Skype, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google. Once imported — assuming that you have contacts duplicated across several of these sources — you can use VIPorbit's merge tool to combine the data from each of these sources. The merge tool compares information from each source and allows you to choose the most appropriate. For example, you may have different photos from the Contacts app, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Before your data is merged you are required to choose the photo you'd like to use for the contact. The merge tool also lets you deselect contacts before you import them, making your initial import as clean as you want it to be. This combination of data import and data merging made it very simple to create a very clean initial contact database in a matter of minutes.

Some features in the app worked inconsistently. For example, manually adding Twitter contacts by typing their @name worked without a hitch, but trying the same thing with Facebook contacts didn't work at all. No matter how I entered the contact info into the designated Facebook contact field I was met with an error stating that the Facebook contact does not exist. Bottom line is that you have to have linked your Mac to your Facebook account.

Anything you do with a contact in VIPorbit is logged by the software, whether it's sending an email message, making a phone call, or scheduling a meeting. You can edit or update these log files and they can also contain notes that you create on your own. This allows you to keep a detailed history of anything and everything you've done with the contacts in your database.

 

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