Filemaker today announced the release of Bento for iPhone and iPod touch. Bento is the iPhone version of the companies popular personal database available for the Mac. Bento leverages the power of Filemaker, but without the learning curve. By itself, Bento for iPhone and iPod touch is certainly an extremely useful program. Combined with Bento 2 for Mac ($49.99), you’d be hard pressed to find a more powerful set of applications for managing your databases. Think of Bento as multiple programs for the price of one and offers integration with Address Book to enable end users to expand and personalize their contact information.
Bento can run as a stand alone app or will sync with Bento on the desktop. You can sync Bento using either a WiFi connection or over an ad-hoc network. It does not support cradle-syncing. If you have multiple iPhones in your house, each can have access to the Bento database. Bento supports only one concurrent connection at a time. Changes made within Bento can then be synced back to the desktop.
As I alluded to, their are countless uses for Bento. The desktop ships with a set of templates for common uses. These include recipe databases and a personal inventory system. The latter is perfect to chronicle your possessions for insurance purposes or even your DVD collection. The beauty of Bento is that you decide what databases to create and can personalize it to your liking. Filemaker has a comprehensive list of the uses of Bento. In essence, you can create countless programs that have customization not often found in a single app. Bento can be your to-do list, recipe database, help you with house hunting and more. With it’s roots in Filemaker, Bento also offers many solutions for small business owners.