Odd iCal/iCloud Question

Discussion in 'Apple Music, Apple Pay, iCloud, Apple Services' started by rrondeau, Aug 31, 2016.

Tags:
  1. rrondeau macrumors newbie

    rrondeau

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2016
    Location:
    St. Paul, MN
    #1
    I currently work for a professional moving company that's using the iCloud Calendar to schedule moves. It displays our availability in one color/calendar and when a service is booked, the event is switched to a different color/calendar.

    Previously, we've had the phones of our Operations Team synced directly through iCloud, but when one of our team members left the country for a vacation in Canada where he did not have service, then came back the calendars on his phone overwrote the up-to-date calendars being managed in the office. This of course led to a couple of days of reconciling where and when our movers were supposed to be. So, it's not as simple as connecting individual phones to the iCloud account that manages the calendar.

    After the great reconciliation of 2015, we decided to disconnect all phones from the iCloud account associated with the calendar.

    Enter Sunrise, a wonderful app that allowed you to push iCloud Calendar events to another calendar that could then be viewed, but not necessarily edited by all necessary parties on their phones. They all had to log in to the same Sunrise account, but it worked.

    As some of you may know, Sunrise is no longer supported and subsequently our solution is no more.

    Next up, I tried privately sharing our calendars with individuals directly via iCloud, giving them Read Only access. This worked at first, but eventually our Sales staff had trouble booking services because iCloud would not allow us to save changes to events. I'm guessing we were just asking too much of iCloud. I know we aren't using iCloud as it's meant to be used, so I'm not surprised.

    That said, I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas on how I might be able to solve this issue.

    If I could somehow get the events of all our calendars or our iCloud account to push to a Google Calendar or someplace else I could very easily give our Operations Team access to the information they need while they are out and about.

    Also, I may trying pushing all calendars to a single iCloud account, provide only Read-Only access, then have folks sync that iCloud account/iCloud calendar on their phones.
     
  2. Brookzy macrumors 68040

    Brookzy

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    Did you use iCloud Calendar Sharing, or did you all use phones signed in with the same iCloud account?
     
  3. rrondeau thread starter macrumors newbie

    rrondeau

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2016
    Location:
    St. Paul, MN
    #3
    We used iCloud Calendar Sharing.
     
  4. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #4
    I have a similar situation that I've solved for my needs. Sunrise Calendar's significant features have all been rolled into the iOS Outlook app. I have people that I need to schedule and direct, and that app works pretty well - information, location, date/time, notes, and "categories". I use an Office 365 Business Essentials account (Exchange AWS and IMAPI) - $5 per month, and it works perfectly with the Outlook mobile (iOS and Windows Mobile - yes, we use WinMo) and desktop apps. I chose O365 as it's pretty much real "push" and utilizes Categories as opposed to "different" calendars to notate change/differentiation.

    And, there are plenty of apps - like Fantastical 2 - that work perfectly with Exchange. With O365 you'll miss a few CalDAV data features, but Apple's "version" of CalDAV doesn't work for me. My 2¢...
     
  5. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
    #5
    Questions:
    1. Is everyone on an iPhone?
    2. Are these personal phones, company phones, or a mix?
    3. Do you have any budget at all for a solution?
    4. How many people would need their own calendar?
    5. What are the read/write permissions of users?
     
  6. rrondeau thread starter macrumors newbie

    rrondeau

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2016
    Location:
    St. Paul, MN
    #6
    1. Everyone is currently using an iPhone
    2. They are a mixture of personal phones and company phones
    3. We might be willing to spend some money to make this work while we work on building our own software, but likely not much.
    4. It's not so much that people need their own calendar. Certain people just need access to our company calendar. But we'd want at least 3 people, as many as 8 people to have access to via the calendar on the go.
    5. The only people that would need the ability to write to the calendar are our Moving Consultants, who are accessing the iCloud account directly via their computers in the office.
    --- Post Merged, Sep 1, 2016 ---
    Thanks for sharing your experience! I'll have to explore the Outlook app more. I looked around some as I've heard Sunrise was rolled into that app, but nothing jumped out at me as being the solution we were looking for.

    I bought Fantastical 2, so I'll have to see if I can make that somehow work. My initial understand though is that the app takes calendar information directly from the phone's calendar accounts.

    The issue is we don't want anyone associating their phones directly with our iCloud account.
     
  7. BrianBaughn macrumors 601

    BrianBaughn

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2011
    Location:
    Baltimore, Maryland
    #7
    The problem with the personal phones is that if you decide you'll use a commonly used app those users may already be using it for something else.

    Having said that, the Google Calendar app would probably work great if no one's using it already and maybe even if they are since the app allows multiple accounts. Even with free Google accounts the sharing could be set up properly.

    The master account, say "dispatch.cmm@gmail.com" would own the "unassigned jobs" calendar as well as all calendars for individual movers (such as "John Jones"). Each mover would need a Google account set up (johnjones.cmm@gmail.com) and the dispatch account would set up sharing for that particular calendar with the corresponding Google user.

    Multiple Event alerts set up at Google Calendar will push via iOS. This would probably have to be done for each mover's account. There are other, email alerts that can be set up if you so desire.

    The Google calendar app also shows locations nicely and can open Google Maps with a touch.
     
  8. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #8
    BrianBaughn's first point in the latest post is a valid point I address by using the Outlook app - it's only connected to that one account, which is managed by myself and my business partner. That app is a massaged and more mature version of the Accompli app. Now that Sunrise is more or less offline I can see the remaining features being integrated quickly into Outlook, and keep in mind that the Outlook app becomes a much more powerful tool when connected to an Exchange account; you can sign up for a free 30-day trial of a Business version of O365, and its Admin portal has plenty of control options.

    Also, I won't get too far afield here but have you looked into either Homebase or Daylite 6 - both have lots of features that address exactly what you're looking for. I'm considering Daylite for my next business venture - the monthly, per-user cost includes all of their solutions for desktop and mobile and there's a 30-day trial too. Cheers!
    --- Post Merged, Sep 1, 2016 ---
    There's been a temporary stay of execution by MS:
    http://www.pcworld.com/article/3113...ne-and-microsoft-outlook-cant-replace-it.html

    See the Update in the 5th paragraph...
     

Share This Page