11 Comments

Summary:

In early 2007, tech luminary Tim O’Reilly published a number of thoughts envisioning a more cohesive and universal ‘address book’ application for the Web 2.0 era…these thoughts were quickly labeled as Address Book 2.0. In the intervening period, we’ve seen companies such as Plaxo and Facebook […]

In early 2007, tech luminary Tim O’Reilly published a number of thoughts envisioning a more cohesive and universal ‘address book’ application for the Web 2.0 era…these thoughts were quickly labeled as Address Book 2.0.

In the intervening period, we’ve seen companies such as Plaxo and Facebook seek to evolve themselves into the position of defacto social address books, but even such powerful companies have only offered uneven ‘hacks’ for integration with our email, cellphone and IM contact books.

Apple’s Mobile Me service has attempted to provide some of the ‘glue’ to connect these silos of contact data, but at a great price…and of course tied to the Mac universe. It’s also telling that Gmail still lacks a useful API to it’s Contacts data – perhaps data that should really be a standalone application? This has left an opening for companies such as Soocial

Founded in Amsterdam, by Stefan Fountain, Soocial provide hooks into existing services and a modicum of interoperability between them. Currently the service enables users to draw contact data from…

It’s an impressive (though again uneven) list of contact sources, notably support for what appears to be a broad range of handsets,though, some like the Facebook application don’t offer true synchronization or access to contact data within that service.

I can’t help but thinking what’s really needed is a master web-based address book, with a standards-based API that any device or application can draw contact information and synchronise with. Perhaps this is the space that Soocial hopes to occupy – or indeed upcoming services such as CloudContacts.

Soocial’s Fountain has such faith in the utility of his service, that he has generously extended a limited number of invitations to Web Worker Daily’s readership, as part of Soocial’s (currently private) beta trial.

Head on over to http://www.soocial.com/web-worker-daily to pickup your invitation and put Soocial through its paces.

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  1. Khürt Williams Tuesday, October 28, 2008

    What’s the benefit of Soocial over something like Plaxo?

  2. Stefan Fountain Tuesday, October 28, 2008

    Khürt, awesome name btw ;-)

    Soocial does more and less than Plaxo. We sync with normal phones – like Nokia, SonyEricsson etc (more than 400 models). We also sync full two way with GMail and Highrise, not just an import. We do less – that is only contacts (and not for example calendar, tasks or notes) and do that very well. We believe that the only way to solve the connected address book is to go into depth on how to sync – provide organization tools etc.

    Like Imran states our aim is to be “a master web-based address book, with a standards-based API that any device or application can draw contact information and synchronise with.”

  3. Stefan,

    Are you guys keeping an eye on the Portable Contacts initiative?

    John

  4. I really would like to test Soocial. Stefan how to obtain an invitation.

    Best regards

  5. Hey eychenne,

    it’s in the article:

    Head on over to http://www.soocial.com/web-worker-daily

  6. Disappointed to see Outlook support no there yet. Also seemed to need OSX to sync my iPhone, which I don’t have.

    I think they’ll also be a need for support to CRM/SFA apps in the future, as many people will have contacts there and not want to do a two hop sync through Outlook to use this functionality.

    Ian Hendry
    CEO, WeCanDo.BIZ
    http://www.wecando.biz

  7. WebWorkerDaily » Archive ContactHero: Vying for Contact Management Dominance « Wednesday, October 29, 2008

    [...] off a recent post by Imran Ali, “Soocial: The Best Address Book You’ll Ever Use?,” I thought I’d put in my impressions about another contact management service – [...]

  8. Ian,

    good points. We are very close to releasing support for Blackberry and even closer to releasing Outlook. We thinks this is going to be huge – we’re going to be relevant to 90% of the market.

    Also CRM/SFA apps are on our list, as we can see with our support of Highrise. We have a bigger team now so we’ll be able to push more updates the next coming months.

    cheers
    Daniel
    Soocial.com

  9. Stefan Fountain Friday, October 31, 2008

    John, we are not only keeping an eye on it but will be implementing it too.

  10. WebWorkerDaily » Archive While We’re Talking Contact Management… « Friday, November 14, 2008

    [...] not improved! So I was excited to read the recent reviews of a couple of contact management apps by Imran Ali and Aliza [...]

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