Any.do: The Must-Have Smartphone App
Today, millions of people will wake up and start their morning routine. Wake up, get out of bed, shower, drink tea or coffee, iron, get dressed, hop into the car and drive to work. Eight or nine hours later they arrive home, possibly cook, eat dinner, watch television or perform other hobbies they enjoy, and eventually get back into bed to endure a closely similar day tomorrow. However, there are lots of blank areas in that small portion of text, and it can be guaranteed that many of these gaps are filled with thinking about what has to be done in the days ahead; Instagram, Twitter and Facebook feeds; stressing because they don't feel organised or productive, but continue to scroll anyway.
In any case, this app with included widget on Android devices and iPhone app really helps in the productivity of daily, weekly, monthly, and even yearly, life.
Please note, this review comes from a Samsung Galaxy S4 user, so some features may be slightly different on other phones. Widgets are only on Android devices.
An app that also can be used as a widget
You may have already heard of Any.do, as it won awards by both Apple and Android in 2012 for the "intuitive touch" award and it's clean & simple to use design and innovative features, respectively (source). It is free on both iPhone and Android, even more reason to download the app!
You can add tasks by simply typing into the bar at the top of the screen, or talking by pressing the microphone symbol next to the bar. The microphone works wonderfully and is easy to use for when you're on the go; while typing, suggestions for tasks appear so you can quickly and easily select pre-determined tasks, such as buying groceries.
Completed a task? Simply swipe right over the task and it will be crossed off! Didn't really complete it? Swipe left over the task and it will be uncrossed!
Reminders may also be added to tasks, which will pop up on time, or up to one hour before the task. A reminder can also be set to repeat once a day, week, month or year, which is extremely useful if you need to pay the bills each week or attend an annual conference.
Extras in the app
- Add notes to tasks. Very helpful if you need to post a blog later that afternoon and don't want to forget what you were wanting to write about
- Add people to tasks. Send a message to others about the task ahead.
- Don't like seeing day-by-day tasks? Sort your tasks into folders! Very useful if you have multiple blogs and don't want to forget where you want to post certain things.
- Mark a task as important. A red margin appears next to tasks that you have marked as important.
- Search. Any.do will search Google! If you have "Go to Japan" as something you want to do someday (yes, not every task has to have a date), it will search Google for travel in Japan.
There are two colour schemes to choose from, which can quickly be changed in the settings. You have an option between a simplistic black and white theme, or (even more elegantly) a white and blue theme.
On android devices, you can also add widgets of the app onto your homescreen, and looks like a stunted version of the full app. You can even add tasks and scroll through the ones you've already added. Although you can't swipe to cross off tasks as this takes you to your next page, you can still click the task and mark it as complete within the widget.
There are three styles of widgets to choose from. A single space widget of only the add a widget buttons, a single line widget showing the next task to complete with add a task buttons, and resizeable, scrollable widgets as mentioned earlier. The theme of the widget matches the one you choose in the app.
Don't Feel Productive?
If you're feeling as if you aren't being too productive, then this app is definitely for you. Having a list where you can easily find them, and being somewhere that is practically always with you helps you keep track of what you want and need to do. Otherwise you're looking for a piece of paper that probably got thrown in the trash two weeks ago, or forgetting something you wanted to blog about. The feeling of crossing off items from a list is one of relief; you have completed something you wanted or needed to do and it's done! No need to worry about time constraints when the reminder is always on your phone.
It all comes down to what you would prefer; to forget something important for having not written it down, or feel accomplished when swiping something off your list of to-do's?
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