PDA for Mac

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by keithsk, Nov 4, 2008.

  1. keithsk macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2008
    i'm searching around for a PDA which could sync well with mac OS 10.5.5, but i'm not sure which one to go for.
    I'm looking for an inexpensive handheld device which can allow me to view microsoft word, excel, and other pdf files like ebooks.
    I like the iPhone concept a lot but it is just not suitable for heavy users of microsoft office and pdf like myself.
    Therefore, i need some advices on choosing a PDA/handheld/palm for mac running microsoft office 2008.
    Please tell me more about syncing issues, any issues with compatibility etc.

    Please help! thanks!!
  2. dejo Moderator


    Staff Member

    Sep 2, 2004
    The Centennial State
    Are you looking to just view Office documents on this PDA or actually edit them as well?
  3. keithsk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2008
    thanks for replying, dejo.

    well, preferrably a device with editting function would be desirable, but, if choices are limited, i don't mind if the device only allow viewing.

    the thing is that i have quite a sizable database of word and excel files (around 800 files) that sometimes i need to refer quickly. (i am a medical student)

    please share your opinions. appreciated.
  4. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604


    Jul 4, 2008
    Silicon Valley
    Why not just an iPod touch or iPhone? I think there are a number of apps out there that allow for MS Office read/write.
  5. cyclingplatypus macrumors 65816


    Mar 15, 2007
    Mark/Space allows you to sync virtually any PDA/Smartphone with the Mac and is well worth the price.
  6. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    Agreed. My wife uses Mark Space to sync a Blackberry Pearl with our mac and it works great.
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Also agreed, re: Markspace being the way to go.

    The problem you'll have, however, is the extent to which PDAs are a dying phenomenon.

    If you need a PDA that is not a phone, I personally would recommend seeing if you can find a used Dell Axim x51v or something of that ilk, with WM5 or WM6. It's a VGA Windows Mobile PDA. I don't even think there are devices like this on the market anymore. But WM will give you the best interoperability with the kind of documents you want, and most of these devices can store gigs of documents on a cheap SD or SDHC card.
  8. keithsk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2008
    thank you all very much for the useful suggestions.

    i went to the Mark Sync website and it seems to be a great idea!

    well, certainly i will take note of Dell Axim as one of my option, but are there other models that are suitable for mac? palm? or should i wait for the Document-To-Go's new realease of MS office running on iPhone/iPod touch?

    i have always been hearing that PDAs without phone run better than the ones with phone built in, is that really true?
    i don't really mind if the PDA goes with a phone or not.

  9. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    I think, a generation ago, this was very true (i.e. around... 2005. But at that time, sales of smartphones climbed so quickly, and PDAs fell off so quickly, that a lot of development of dedicated PDAs died off. If you look at that market... how many new models has Palm released since around 2005 or 2006? And who is releasing WM non-phone PDAs anymore?

    I think the net result was that, while a dedicated PDA today might be better than its phone counterparts, the differential development of the phone market has caused the phone tech to surge ahead.

    That being said, if you're open to a phone, that opens up lots of good touchscreen WM devices that have come out in the last 12-18 months. Few of them come with the kind of storage space an iPhone has, but most of them have SDHC or Micro-SD slots that can let you upgrade their memory capacity. Those devices are going to handle docs the best. So if that's your biggest priority, it's probably the place to go. As for Palm... I guess, you have to go on your own feel. I have not been able to stand their products anytime recently, although once upon a time, years ago, I liked them. If they work for you, though, why not? They tend to have smaller, lower quality screens, though. And actually, some of their newest devices run WM anyways (e.g. Treo Pro).
  10. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    I have Nokia E71 and I can sync with no issues whatsoever.
  11. mariov macrumors member

    Nov 6, 2008
    My vote is for the nokia e71. Fantastic device. Works perfect with iSync. :cool:
  12. keithsk thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2008
    thx mkrishnan for yor explaination.
    no wonder from my searching, the latest realeases of phone-less handhelds almost all dated back to 2005.
    then it isn't quite a good idea to insist on phone-less handhelds.

    and, i feel the same about Palm like you do. the screen is a bit small-ish for comfortable reading, other than Palm TX which was realeased in 2005 too.

    probably the best way for me is to get a WM PDA running Markspace then.

    thx alphaod and mariov for recommending Nokia E71, i will make sure to check it out when i get to the store.
    well, i'm eyeing on some O2 or HTC PDAs... anyone has any ideas on that?

  13. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    One thing I don't know anything about at all are the document capabilities of the e71 (and no one who has plugged it so far in the thread, that I can see, has even mentioned this, in spite of it seeming to be the central issue).

    The docs software on it appears to be called QuickOffice... most of the reviews I've seen of the device only mention how it is in passing, though:


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