Ilium Software Week: eWallet

by PocketGoddess on April 26, 2006

eWallet is designed to help you keep track of all of those sensitive bits of personal information such as passwords, logins, account numbers, and the like. As our lives get faster and more “connected” it seems that the numbers become more important than the personal interaction (especially at the bank!) which means that we’re ever more likely to suffer from identity theft. eWallet has strong 256-bit encryption to keep your information safe, along with a clever organization system designed to help you find things fast. Instead of presenting you with row after row of information in a database format, eWallet uses categories and a few outliner-style tools that allow you to drill down quickly to what you need, instead of going through page after page of data.

When you first install eWallet, the file has a few sample cards as well as a short tutorial designed to explain some of the basics to you. I’d suggest starting out with some basic categories such as financial, Internet/email passwords, insurance information, etc. Each category has a default card, though when you’re adding new cards to eWallet you can choose from a variety of templates (31 are included). Each one is already organized for you with field names that match the typical kinds of information you’ll enter in each category. The bank account template includes bank name, telephone, account type, account number, PIN, and other information such as routing code, URL/username/password for the online banking site, etc. You can even add graphics and sound to each card to personalize things further. You can also choose the “freeform” template if you want to input everything manually. Some of the more advanced options include the ability to change the font and colors for each card and a nifty icon view that offers a different way to find what you’re looking for.

Ilium eWallet, Detail Ilium eWallet, Card Settings

The Windows desktop application looks just like its handheld counterpart, and is just as easy to use. It also offers some extra features, such as exporting your data and compacting the database in order to save space on the handheld. One feature that caused a bit of confusion at first was the choice between two synchronization methodologies if you’re using a Windows Mobile device (Palm OS users only use HotSync). You’re already familiar with ActiveSync, which will automatically sync your eWallet data when the device is in the cradle. But the latest version of eWallet introduced Ilium’s new SyncPro technology, which allows you to choose which cards you want to sync with your device. This limits the exposure of your personal data to the things that you truly need to carry with you at all times, with the items you choose not to sync staying safely locked away on your desktop PC. This adds an extra layer of complexity, but I appreciate having the option of individual record-level control of my data, if I choose.

eWallet is definitely “prettier” than some of its competitors, most notably SplashID, and it also offers other options that those applications don’t have. If’ you’re just starting out with trying to get your personal information organized and protected, eWallet would be a good choice because it’s very easy to use. It doesn’t offer any mind-blowing new features on either the Palm OS or Windows Mobile platform, so if you’re already happy with your personal information organizer, you may not find a compelling reason to switch unless you’re a U3 Smart Drive enthusiast, as eWallet is compatible with that technology. eWallet is available for Palm OS, Windows Mobile, and Windows Smartphone for $19.95, or you can get the handheld/desktop Professional bundle version for $29.95. For more information, a free 30 day trial, or to purchase your copy, visit the Ilium Software web site.

4 out of 5

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