It’s like when your friends think you like cats, and all they’ll buy you is cat-themed stuff. Write a few reviews of productivity/to-do apps, and then everyone wants you to try their app. Good thing I’m a sucker for a good productivity app.
Todoist is the latest one I’ve tried, and while it doesn’t look like it will replace Pocket Informant as my go-to app, it’s got a lot to recommend it.
To start, it’s available everywhere, literally. There’s apps for Web, Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac. There are even browser plugins for Chrome and Firefox. If you want your tasks with you everywhere, this app is one you’ll want to look at.
It’s clean, which I like. There’s nothing to get in the way of what you want to get done.
On the Today screen, you see what’s due today and what’s overdue. If you are using the Getting Things Done method of task management, you can set Projects for each task. You can also set a Context (which the app calls a Label), but only if you’ve upgraded to the Premium version. (I was offered a free Premium upgrade by the developer.) You’ve also got control of colors, but again, only in the Premium version. An upgrade will cost you $28.99 a year, which makes this app expensive over time. It would be nice if they had a monthly option so you could try it out and see if you need the extra features.
One nice feature is the ability to create tasks from web pages, using the Chrome or Firefox plugin. That’s a handy feature, especially for bloggers. See an article you want to write about? Create a task from the page and have it right there when you look at your task list. There aren’t many task management apps that make it that easy. Pocket Informant, for example, can do it, but only by linking Evernote, clipping a page in Evernote and then creating a Reminder from there. Todoist makes it a one-step, one-app process.
I have mixed feelings about the Premium features. The basic app is free, which is nice, especially considering it’s feature set. Other similar apps cost, but Todoist is quite limited without the Premium upgrade. I thought it odd that you needed to upgrade to set Labels, which I consider a must-have feature of a task management app. You’ll also need to upgrade if you want to add notes to your tasks. While that’s nice, I think making it a premium feature is appropriate. An upgrade will also get you reminders by email, SMS or mobile push notifications.
The oddest feature of Todoist is Karma. If gamification is a good motivator for you, you’ll probably love it. As you complete tasks and use the app, you’ll accumulate Karma points.
Accumulate enough points, and you can become “Enlightended.” Gamification isn’t a big motivator for me, but it is for lots of people.
While it’s a good app, I said earlier it won’t replace Pocket Informant for me. That’s because it’s just a task manager. I like having my calendar and tasks together, but for someone who’s just looking for a clean, powerful task manager, Todoist might be the right one for you.