The convenience of having all notifications set up and centralized using one app definitely makes the app incredibly useful, particularly if you already use it on any of your iOS devices. The app’s settings are simple and straightforward, and it comes with a mute feature, allowing you to quickly and conveniently stop notifications for as long as you need to without having to the exit the program.
If you’ve never used Boxcar before, the first thing you’ll do upon launching the app is sign up for a new account through their website. All it takes is your email address and a password.
The next step will be to add the services, allowing you to receive notifications on your Mac. Through the Boxcar website, you can then add each service individually. The complete list of supported services is Facebook, Twitter, Gowalla, Foursquare, Google Buzz, Google Voice, Reddit, and Github, as well as any email account, RSS feed. You can also receive notifications of app recommendations from Boxcar, as well as updates from OMGFacts.
To add Twitter, make sure you are logged into your Twitter account on the web and authorize the app. You can then be notified of mentions, reweets, follows, DMs and even when you’re added to lists or when your tweets are favourited.
When you receive a Twitter notification, you can reply or retweet from within Boxcar itself.
In addition to the standard Twitter notifications for your account, you can also receive notifications of Twitter’s trending topics or a specific Twitter search of your choosing, or even tweets from a specific Twitter list.
Adding your Facebook account to Boxcar uses the same method as Twitter – by authorizing the app to access your account. In order to use Boxcar with Facebook you have to grant the app access to your basic information, to post to your wall, access messages in your inbox, posts in your news feed and manage your events.
To receive push notifications of new emails in any given email account, Boxcar generates a forwarding address for you to add to your email account.
After you add the Boxcar specific forwarding address to your account, you will receive the verification code as a notification within the app.
Since adding new accounts or adjusting their settings are all centralized through the Boxcar website, if you’re already using Boxcar on your iOS device, you’ll find that, upon downloading and logging into your account, all of your accounts already added to the app. All notifications can be accessed and deleted from the Boxcar window by clicking the icon in the status bar.
As far as the Mac app itself is concerned, Boxcar sits quietly in your status bar until you receive a new notification. Like with the iOS app, you can choose different notification sounds for different accounts, making it easy to differentiate between the notifications even if you can’t see your screen.
By installing the Growl plugin each notification will be accompanied by a standard growl notification, allowing Boxcar to blend seamlessly into the Mac environment. Like with any other application you can configure your Boxcar Growl settings by going to System Preferences > Growl > Applications, highlight Boxcar and click Configure.
Settings for the app itself are limited to starting the app at login, playing the notification sounds, showing notifications using Growl, using a black and white icon in the status bar, and setting a keyboard shortcut to pull up the notifications window.
Are you using Boxcar to get push notifications on your Mac? How do you like it? Let us know in the comments.
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