How to be alerted via SMS about appointments     

Many people use Outlook to maintain details of appointments. It’s great to be able to get an automatic reminder when an important meeting or other appointment is due. But what happens when you are away from your PC and unable to see the reminder?

Some people use smartphone devices, and synchronize their portable calendars with Outlook each time they are at their desk. This works fine, but sometimes synchronization can be cumbersome or troublesome. It also falls down when meetings are scheduled by coworkers at short notice – these appointments don’t get synchronized and therefore reminders are not generated.

The solution described below may be a better alternative for some. It is easy to set up and does not rely on synchronization. Follow the steps to send appointment reminders and other Outlook reminders to your mobile phone via SMS when you are away from your desk. Hopefully this will mean fewer missed appointments for you!

(These steps assume you have Outlook installed – see Skylook prerequisites for details).

1. Follow these instructions to set up Skype if you don’t already use it.

2. If you don’t already have Skylook, download and install it from here.

3. Start Outlook. If you are running Skylook for the first time, you will see the Skylook licensing wizard and the Skylook Welcome wizard. When you see the page below, fill it out as shown:
SMS Alert for Appointment - Wizard

4. If you are not running Skylook for the first time, you won’t see the welcome wizard, but you can set up the alert by clicking this button on the toolbar:
Skylook Alerts Button

then filling in the options as shown:
Alerting Options

and clicking OK.

5. Skype SMS requires you to purchase Skype Credit. Each time an SMS is sent (and therefore each time you receive a reminder alert), your Skype Credit balance is reduced. If you do not have any Skype Credit, the wizard or options dialog will prompt you to purchase some. Alternatively, you can buy Skype Credit here. If you are doing this for the first time, we recommend you purchase the minimum amount so you can give it a try without too much of an outlay.

6. Proceed to the end of the welcome wizard if it is still displayed.

7. Set up a test appointment in the Outlook calendar. If you set one up for, say, an hour ago, Outlook should display the reminder soon after you save the appointment.

8. After the reminder is displayed, leave it (i.e. do not dismiss or snooze it) for two to three minutes. You will receive an SMS alerting you about the reminder. (NOTE: the two to three minute interval is a Skylook default. You can vary this and other settings using Advanced Alerts.  In addition, if your Skype status is “Away” or “Not Available”, the SMS is sent straight away).

9. If you did not receive an alert, check the Outlook inbox. If Skylook had problems sending the SMS, the details of the problem are placed in a new inbox item for you to review.

10. Once you’ve finished trying this, don’t forget to set your Skype status back to “Online”. By default, Skype switches your status to “Away” automatically if your computer is left idle for more than five minutes. (Note: You may wonder what happens with reminders that pop up during the five minute gap – don’t worry, Skylook forwards these calls also, as soon as Skype switches your status to “Away”).
If you need additional help, please contact us for assistance.