Meeting Schedule Help: vs. TimeBridge

May 9, 2010

10:03 am

Coordinating schedules to setup a meeting can sometimes be a lot of work. It could include a whole email string on possible available dates and times to meet, places to meet, etc. It can be a lot of back and forth and once you finally agree on a time you still have to send a meeting invite. It’s a tiring process so we decided to explore the market for a possible solution. We found two similar products in Timebridge and so we decided to put them to the test to determine how they stack up against each other and which product to ultimately use for all our scheduling needs.

Timebridge, a Berkeley, California based company founded by Yori Nelken in 2005, offers an easy way to manage you meetings by syncing with your Outlook, Google Calendar or iCal to propose possible meeting times on a per meeting request basis. Once all the meeting respondents have responded to a meeting request ranking the best possible times to meet then Timebridge automatically schedules the meeting. The Timebridge base scheduling application is free but offers up-sells for additional features like conference calling and text message reminders. Timebridge allows users to select and propose exact meeting times and then auto schedules a meeting based on all the meeting participants ranking of the suggested times. Timebridge also offers a mobile app for the iPhone which allows users to interact with meeting attendees on the fly but does not allow the ability to actually schedule new meetings., a startup based in Montreal, Canada that was founded in 2006, offers a simple online and mobile platform for scheduling. tackles scheduling two different ways. First, users can opt to share the times they are available with a personalized public URL. Secondly, users can share possible meeting times individually per meeting request. When selecting available times users can select a range of times and then meeting participants can select a time that works best in the given range. Tungle also offers a slick iPhone application for on-the-go scheduling. recently partnered with Plancast which we covered previously.

We put Timebridge and to a month long field test by using both products to schedule all our meetings. Ample time to understand which product offered the best user features and experience for our needs. Both products are very similar from a feature perspective so we had a difficult time determining which is really better. After extensive testing, came out slightly on top from a feature perspective since it offers users the ability to schedule either by making your availability public or by offering specific times individually. But we found that TimeBridge actually blocked out times that were suggested in meeting requests, which proved useful when trying to schedule multiple meetings since you were not able to suggest the same times for two different meetings at once. Both products have iPhone applications but’s iPhone application offers real-time scheduling functionality while Timebridge just offers users the ability to see existing meetings – which is not as useful for on-the-go scheduling. Neither offer mobile applications for Android phones but just launched a Blackberry application. Overall, it was very close. The products are very similar but we ended up selecting as we saw it as a slightly better fit for our scheduling needs… that is until TimeBridge comes out with another killer feature or improves its mobile application offering.

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Frank Gruber is the cofounder, CEO and Executive Editor of Tech.Co (formerly Tech Cocktail). He is the author of the book, Startup Mixology, Tech Cocktail’s Guide to Building, Growing, and Celebrating Startup Success. He is also a startup advisor and investor to startups. Find Frank Gruber online and follow him on Twitter at @FrankGruber.

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