As most of us with an iPhone and a Mac or two have done, I tried the MobileMe 2 month free trial to see what the hype was all about. During this 2 month period I have to say I experienced more discontent and anger than any other program or service I have used thus far.
I never used the original .Mac service but I can only assume if this newer, more expensive version is anything like its predecessor then .Mac had to be one of the worst services to date. The only thing I found remotely interesting and unhindered is the Contacts listing that Me.com stored on your “cloud”. Every other aspect of this troublesome web app is surpassed by so many other services it would be against all logic to ever bother paying $99 for.
Overall Problems: I couldn’t connect to the service at work because it depends on higher versions of browsers than my company has installed. There wasn’t even a lower version that just had email capabilities that I could access anywhere, and there was no mobile access even from your iPhone. Which isn’t necessarily a needed feature but it would be nice to be able to check my email and things from someone elses phone. Especially since Google has been doing almost all MobileMe is doing for years.
Contacts: The only service that I never experienced a problem with. I would add a contact on my phone, it would appear in my cloud. If I changed a contact it would be pushed everywhere else connected to my cloud, so simple it couldn’t be screwed up.
Calendars: The Calendar service was fairly simple and didn’t have much to complain about except for one major flaw, the calendars could not be synced with online calendars. For example, I use google calendar and have my fiance’s calendar hooked up to mine so I can see what she is doing and when she is working, but with MobileMe those calendars can’t by synced due to the fact that it might overlap and cause recurring events on the calendar. It seems like Apple could easily make a fix for this such as a cross comparing algorithm or some other form of syncing those items only once.
Email: The biggest problem of them all. Half the time I couldn’t log into Email and the other half things were never sent properly. When I forwarded emails they rarely got to their destination, I couldn’t depend on anyone getting my messages and had to chat purely over IM. It also has a very horrible reliability when it comes to emails being received when forwarded from other emails. On any other email I have tried I would always receive forwarded emails right away, but not with MobileMe, I would rarely if ever get those messages. The spam filter is horrible and didn’t block any of the spam that I got on a regular basis.
iDisk: You have the ability to have up to 19GB online storage drive through MobileMe. Then you can create a network drive on any one of your computers and have it easily accessible from anywhere. The only problem lies with the length of time it takes to upload or download any file and the fact that it is so buggy and resistant to files that it hardly ever works. I have worked with FTP forever and would rather FTP into my own webserver because it would be 10x faster and more reliable. I have looked for a way to FTP into my iDisk but I haven’t found a solid solution, and even if I did I could pay less for a webserver that would do the same and be more reliable.
Photo Album: I have not used this feature because it was not something I wanted so I really have no comments about it. Although in a perfect world it would be nice and work with no hitches but after everything I have seen from Appl’s MobileMe so far I have little faith in this service.
So $99/year for a service that hardly delivers on its promises. I have to say this is the most unpleasing service I have ever worked with and would never concider using it ever again. Even if this service is free I would worry about my files being safe or my emails getting where they needed to be. The only reason I would even concider using this service is if it was the last thing on earth, I magically lost all knowledge of anything technical, fell in love with Apple and all of its products, and decided I had nothing else to live for. So in short, do NOT buy this service.