Thursday, April 16, 2009

Free SMS Pre-Event Reminder?

You probably have a cellular phone. It probably has a reminder/calendar/memo function--the one which alarms when the time and date you set it to remind you of something, like to give a speech, prepare a lesson plan, or buy a mouse. That's good.

However, usually, we want a reminder before the event. Most of the phones I had will only remind me that the event is happening now, which is practically useless, because I would have been in no position to make adjustments. Some cellular phones do have one--pre-event reminders--but it has limited capability to have multiple reminder (What for? How about preparing for a speech, when you have to be reminded to write a speech two days before the event, to print it night before the event, and to consider the travel time two hours before the event, and to practice it an hour before the event?).

In any case, another option that you have is to use Google Calendar's SMS reminder. This is a free service.

In order to be reminded prior to the event, you need to do things: 1) Register your mobile phone number; and, 2) Set up the reminder for every event that you are going to enter in your Google Calendar.

Setting up your mobile phone service to receive SMS reminders
  1. To set up your mobile phone service to receive free SMS reminders, log in to your Google (or email. Then click "Calendar" at the top of the page.
  2. Or you can go to Google Calendar's URL, If you have an, the URL for the Calendar is
  3. Then go to "Settings." The link is found both at the upper-right hand of the page and at the left side of the page.
  4. Click "Mobile Setup" (obviously!).
  5. Enter your mobile number inthe field that says (surprise!) "Phone Number." (as of the moment of this post, Globe and Smart (and their sub-networks, TM and TNT, respectively) are recognized carriers. (Sun and Red subscribers, sorry...)
  6. Select your carrier from the drop-down menu, if applicable. However, if you see the link See Help Center for supported providers, please check if your provider is supported before requesting your verification code.
  7. If your carrier is supported, click the Send Verification Code button, and you'll get a text message on your phone.
  8. Once you receive this message, enter the code you received into the 'Verification code' box and click the Finish setup button.
That's it. Your mobile phone is now set up to receive SMS reminders.

Setting up a reminder
  1. If you have used Google Calendar, this should be easy. If not, just log in to your Google Calendar, select the schedules where the event is supposed to happen. You can do this by clicking and dragging your mouse on the schedules/periods when the event is supposed to happen. This will open a balloon. You can enter there the name of the event.
  2. After entering the event, click "Edit Event Details." This will open the details of that particular event.
  3. When the new page comes up, look at the lower part of the page, where you should see the available types of reminders. Make the appropriate adjustments, and remember to click "Save" at the top of the page.

For more information about Google Calendar and other options, such as setting up the default notification for new reminders and changing reminders, you can go here.

Google Calendar Help.

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