FileMaker has just announced a new Bento application for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Touted as an all in one tool, Bento is a Mac-styled, condensed database in your pocket.
The original $50 Bento software—named after Japanese-styled lunchboxes that have designated spaces for different items—is intended for use at home for everyone from soccer moms to gadgetheads, whereas its older brother, FileMaker Pro, is used mainly in offices by larger companies. The Bento application, like both databases, helps you keep tabs on all your stuff—including your address book, calendars, events, projects, logs and lists—all organized in one application.
Supposedly, what makes Bento so simple to use is that it automatically syncs your address book, mail, iCalendar and other data directly from your computer to your phone. For those who own the $50 Bento software, it's supposed to be easier for you to input data into your phone without having to type everything out on the touch-QWERTY-keyboard on your phone. For example, if you would like to store a specific recipe on your phone, you could simply just copy and paste it into Bento on your computer, drag and drop an accompanying photo into the entry, and then sync it to your phone. Moreover, because FileMaker, Inc. is a subsidiary of Apple, the Bento application is apparently intuitive to those who are familiar with Mac layouts and style, with iTunes-esque formatting and similar search bar. Unfortunately for PC users, using the Bento software coupled with the application is only available for Mac users for $4.99. [Bento in App Store]