Android Froyo? That's just what the myPhoneDesktop app eats after a hard day of wirelessly zapping links, text and images from your computer to your iPhone or iPad—a taste of the mouthwatering functionality Google demoed on Android last week.
As it becomes clearer that smart phones and tablets aren't people's lesser computers but simply their other computers, one of the greatest frustrations—and something Google tantalizingly promised to address with Android 2.2—is how isolated all of these devices are from one another. Thankfully, myPhoneDesktop lets your iPhone and iPad get intimate with your Mac, Windows or Linux PC, without the USB chastity belt or overbearing iTunes chaperone.
Despite its unwieldy name and its unforgiving website, myPhoneDesktop is a pretty smooth operator. You just copy something to your clipboard on your computer—a phone number, a scrap of text, a URL, an image—and the desktop app will beam it over WiFi or 3G to your device of choice. It's a quick, smart way to dial a phone number you encounter on the net, zap a map from your browser to your iPhone as you go out the door, or push a website over to your iPad for further perusal. To be fair, it's not nearly as ambitious as the stuff Google was showing off—you can't, say, buy songs or apps and send them to your phone—but myPhoneDesktop is here now, and it works well.
Best of all, things go where they're supposed to. When I copied YouTube links, they opened in the native YouTube app; crazy-long Google maps links opened in the Maps app; and images were instantly saved in my iPad's photo album. Simply put, this is how computers and mobile devices should interact—seamlessly. Everything you send has to go through myPhoneDesktop's app, which means that the app has to open, log you in, and then process the image/link/whatever you just beamed to it, but it's only a hiccup compared to the ordeal of syncing a new iPad background image via iTunes, or even compared to the workaround of emailing yourself the image.
Sweetening the deal, push notifications give you the option to check your beamed material that very second or let it collect in the app where you can check it out later.
There are myPhoneDesktop clients for Macs, PCs, and Linux machines, as well as a web-based app if you find yourself needing to zap from an unfamiliar computer. There's support for Growl and a bunch of keyboard shortcuts and the next version, pending App Store approval, will have support for multiple iDevices and and and, drum roll please, the app that has got me so breathlessly excited can be had in the App Store right now for only £1.19.
It almost seems ludicrous to heap so much praise on an app that accomplishes such a stupidly simple task, but the other side of that coin is realizing just how ludicrous it is that iPhones and iPads don't have this type of integration to begin with.