We’ve previouslycovered the impressive Microsoft Outlook add-on Xobni (s msft). The company behind it has just released a new premium edition of the product called, appropriately enough, Xobni Plus, available for a one-time fee of $29.95. There are a number of productivity-boosting features that are exclusive to the new edition.
Xobni Plus reveals a great deal about your contacts, and provides instant access to their profiles on some of the most popular social networks, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This can really come in handy when trying to connect with a new colleague, partner or customer.
I like how these services are integrated with the Xobni interface; with one click you can either add them as a contact on the service or go to the site for more information. The exciting part is that Xobni is continuing to add more popular services, such as Skype.
Another feature that I like is the integrated Google (s goog) search box; it’s very useful for instant access to a Google search for that particular contact.
I must admit that it’s impressive how many useful features Xobni was able to cram into such tiny screen real estate without making it look too cluttered.
Xobni Plus includes some interesting new options that give Microsoft Outlook some much-needed smarts. For example, right out of the gate you’ll notice the much-improved autocompletion feature while filling out the “to” field for a new email message. Outlook is extremely feeble-minded when it comes to filling that address out, seemingly only supplying the most recent of most-used email addresses. Xobni Plus provides a boatload of names to choose from thanks to its powerful new search engine, which indexes all contacts, including those only found in the “cc:” field. Another useful time-saver is the way it can find an email address just by typing a part of an address, such as the company name.
These are all features that Outlook should have built in by now. Over the course of a few days, these seemingly small time-savers made a big difference to my productivity.
Search and Rescue
Also available in the Plus edition is a souped-up search feature. You can not only search for contacts but also any keyword or phrases in the subject and message body. There’s also an advanced search query builder for ultra-detailed searches.
There’s also the very handy ability to search and filter within threaded conversations and within each contact’s network, which would allow you to look for that colleague of one of your contacts that you have forgotten the name of, for example.
The Bottom Line
Here are some other benefits that come with the Plus edition:
- One year of tech support
- No ads
- Multiple .PST file search
The free version of Xobni is very useful and might be sufficient for many people’s needs. However, for power email users, Xobni Plus offers more than enough features to warrant the one-time expense of $29.95 (with a charge of $9.95 for each additional computer you want to use it on).
If you’re a Xobni user, will you be upgrading to Plus?