FileMaker: Bento downloads top 250,000 mark

Personal database that organizes your busy lifeOver 250,000 users have downloaded Bento, the new personal database for Mac OS X Leopard, FileMaker has announced.

The majority of the downloads have come from sales and trial downloader’s of Bento, and the company is just now beginning to distribute Bento around the world. In addition to English, Bento is now available in French, Italian, German, Spanish and Japanese.

“Bento’s popularity is propelled by the need for easy-to-use organizational software tools such as Bento, and by the rapid adaption of Mac OS X Leopard,” said FileMaker president Dominique Goupil in the press release.

Bento has also won praise throughout the editorial community. BusinessWeek recently termed it “a powerful organizing tool anyone can use.” Bento was honored as Editors’ Choice by Laptop magazine, MacWorld magazine (UK) and Mac Observer.

Bento is the stylish, personal database that helps Mac users organize their work and personal life. Designed specifically for Mac OS X Leopard, Bento is an exceptionally easy way to organize contacts, calendars, projects, events, and more, faster and easier than ever before.

FileMaker, Inc. develops award-winning database software. Its products include the legendary FileMaker Pro product line for Windows, Mac and the Web, and the new Bento personal database for Mac. FileMaker Pro won 46 awards, more than its next eight competitors combined, from 2003-2007. Millions of customers, from individuals to large organisations, rely on FileMaker, Inc. software to manage, analyse and share information. FileMaker, Inc. is a subsidiary of Apple Inc.

More info about Bento here.


  1. I used the trial but didn’t have the cash at the time to buy it once it was over. I liked it a lot. The integration with iCal was the best part for me since I had a lot of my work appointments on my iCal and didn’t have to actually have it open. Plus, I entered all my notes into Bento from my client calls. Worked great and saved me the trouble of having to monitor multiple apps.

    Good for everyday use, but obviously isn’t as powerful as FileMaker or anything.

  2. Without a serious query feature or comprehensive import/export facilities, Bento is of very limited use and not worth the money. It could/should have filled the gap between Numbers and Excel in terms of forms and data management and go some way to making up for the lack of an Access equivalent in the iWork suite, but it doesn’t deliver on any of these. Neither is there any equivalent to MS Word’s data merge which can use Excel files, Access query output or many other formats. What’s needed is Filemaker Lite as the 4th app in iWork

  3. ….sure hope so; as an example of how half-baked it is, Bento doesn’t even have any decent printing features, so you can’t print mailing labels from a smart list you’ve created in Bento – the manual directs you back to Address Book’s own label printing feature, which kinda defeats the point!

  4. Bento seems very promising, but as long as one can’t link to emails in Mail, it’s cross reference potential is very limited. What good is an iCal reference if you can’t link from within Bento to the associated mails for example?

    Very promising though, would like to see it mature.

  5. Apples needs to buy Filemaker and integrate it into iWork. iWork PRO anyone? Bento reminds me of how much I miss and Outlook-like/Entourage-like app in addition to a database app. For those of us who don’t want to use MS Office, these additions are long overdue!

  6. iMaki,

    What part of “FileMaker, Inc. is a subsidiary of Apple Inc.” don’t you understand? As in, they *own* it…

    iWork integration notwithstanding, Apple does own Filemaker and, therefore, Bento. Just FYI.

  7. We’ve been through this before.
    a) it’s a relational database
    b) it’s missing quite a few business-style features
    c) the interface is worthy of any Apple software … ever
    d) it’s a start
    And I agree with iMaki, something like this belongs in iWork. Is needed for iWork. But … not “this“. I’m sure Apple/FileMaker is getting lots of feedback on “what Bento NEEDS”, and working on making at least some of that happen for V2. But … not ALL of it. Bento is not a replacement for FileMaker Pro, nor even a front end for it, and doesn’t want to be mistaken for a consumer version of it. It is a delicate balancing act, making an “entry-level” app … adding enough features to make for happy sales numbers but not so many that your main product’s sales are noticeably compromised. Falling a bit short on V1 is no surprise. Look at any of the products in the iLife suite … the first versions were both feature shy and quite amazing all at the same time.

  8. “Bento is not a replacement for FileMaker Pro, nor even a front end for it, and doesn’t want to be mistaken for a consumer version of it. It is a delicate balancing act, making an “entry-level” app … adding enough features to make for happy sales numbers but not so many that your main product’s sales are noticeably compromised.”

    Like the differences among iMovie and Final Cut Express and Final Cut Studio?

  9. I used the Bento preview a little, and I felt that it had potential. I could see generating a number of ad-hoc databases using Bento – inventory tracking, recipe book, etc. – for which people often use dedicated software. A programmer relative developed a firearm tracking system in Windows, but realized that he could have saved a lot of time and ended up with a better product using Bento. In just a few minutes I took a basic template and added a few fields that he wanted (manufacturer, manufacturing date, serial number, photo, etc.). He was reasonably impressed.

    The key for me will be to find the time to gather and enter the information for all of the great things that I would like to do with it.

  10. as long as it doesn’t support networking I can’t really see this thing take off. Sure, everyone and their cousin might DL it to check it out etc. but smaller agencies who might want to set up a database are screwed…staying with the last century look of FMP of course.

  11. I like it, but it could use some more features.

    I bought it because I can use some of the features, but I’m still using OmniFocus for my Task management. It’s faster and simpler to work with for that, and it integrates well with email and to-do’s.

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