Gmail is arguably the most popular cloud email service for businesses and web workers. Part of any business is keeping in touch with your contacts. Many times this isn’t always through email. While other people may live on Facebook or Twitter, you may prefer to spend most of your day with Gmail open. Xobni comes to the rescue by combining all forms of communication in a single smart interface.
Xobni was previously an add-on for Outlook. Now they have an app for Blackberry, Android and iPhones as well as for Gmail called Smartr. What you get with this smart addition is access to your social networks right from where you are already spending your time.
Adding Smartr to Gmail
You will need to download the browser extension before you can use Smartr. There is also an account required. This is mainly to allow your Smartr account and contacts to be synced with the cloud and across multiple devices.
When you are all downloaded, you will see a new column in Gmail.
When you log in for the first time, your contacts will start uploading to Smartr. This can take a while, but it is worth the wait. What you will see when your contacts are all uploaded is a bar like this.
In the column, you can see how many contacts you have and all of the email addresses. Keep in mind, once you link your Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin accounts (recommended) to Smartr, it may look like you have way more contacts than you are accustomed to. These contacts do not import to your inbox or to your mobile, they are just accessible through Smartr.
Linking your accounts
The main point of Smartr is to keep up with your contacts where they like to hang out. So linking your Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin accounts is a must. If you want to start with Twitter or Linkedin and add the others later, you can always do that too. Linking your social accounts is a matter of granting Smartr access to those accounts.
After your accounts are linked and synced, you can start to see their activity.
When you change the tab to Facebook or Twitter, you see updates from your contacts who use those services. Smartr offers a special feature for Twitter. Based on the people you email the most, a private Twitter list is made in your Twitter account. This way you can see the updates from just these people.
Smartr For Mobile
Smarter has mobile versions available too. The way they work is very similar to the Gmail add-on. For all intents and purposes, Smartr can replace your normal contacts icon on your Android or iPhone. When you sign in on your mobile, you can see all of the same info as you would in Gmail with some extras. You can allow Smartr to index your phone calendar, SMS and call log to better filter out your most interacted with contacts.
Keeping track of where people are on the web can be really difficult. When you have services like Smartr, you will have the tools to better manage your contact list and communicate with people where they are most comfortable.