Todoist is a versatile but simple todo app with a Google-like interface that makes it simple to use. Though it has many features, some of the most useful ones are only available to pro users at $29/year. But if you don’t mind paying, and appreciate the simple but effective interface and functionality, Todoist is a good choice.
In our quest to find the best task-management app, we set the following six criteria:
- Must be ubiquitous: web app, iPad app, and Android app–with sync.
- Must be easy to use.
- Must have reminders: email and SMS.
- Must have the ability to create recurring tasks.
- Must be inexpensive or free.
- Must have an attractive and intuitive interface.
Todoist has been around for a little while and has many features, but they come at a cost. Let’s look at the free version and see how it competes against our requirements.
Must be ubiquitous: web app, iPad app, and Android app–with sync.
Todoist offers a Mac desktop app, a web app, an iPhone app, and Chrome and Firefox extensions. As far as I can tell, there is no iPad or universal iOS app and all of the Android apps that are available are through third-parties. There is no native Android app though they claim to have both Android and Blackberry apps in the works.
Must be easy to use.
Todoist is a cinch to use with its very clean and uncluttered interface.
To add a task, click the “Add a Task” link, fill in the info and a due date, if needed, and click enter. Due dates can be entered as contextual text like “this Monday” or “tomorrow” or with exact dates.
To complete a task, simply click on the checkbox to the left of the task.
You can reorder your tasks by clicking on the “Reorder” link under your tasks and then clicking the appropriate arrows on the right side of your task to move them into place.
Projects are just groups of tasks and can be simply created by clicking the “Add project” link along the left sidebar.
And like reordering your tasks, you can reorder your projects by clicking on the “reorder” link and using the arrows to move your projects around.
You can take various task actions by clicking on the gear to the right of the task. These include task editing, task postponing, moving tasks to another project, inserting tasks above or below, etc.
You can filter your tasks by clicking on “today,” “7 days,” or “more” in the left sidebar.
You can also sort your tasks by clicking on the gear just above your task list where you can sort by date, priority, or name.
Clicking the gear in the upper righthand corner allows you to logout or change your preferences.
So, as you can see, Todoist is a simple, but effective task-management app that has a low learning curve.
Must have reminders: email and SMS.
Unfortunately, Todoist doesn’t offer any reminders unless you subscribe to the Pro version for $29 per year. Now that isn’t really a lot of money in the scheme of things, but reminders are such a basic feature of todo apps, that charging for this feature seems a bit sneaky to me.
Must have the ability to create recurring tasks.
Recurring tasks are very simple in Todoist. Using contextual recurring dates in the due-date box will convert the task into a recurring task. So simply by entering in things like “every Friday,” “every 7th of the month,” or “every weekday” your tasks will reoccur according to the schedule you set. Nice.
Must be inexpensive or free.
Todoist is basically a free task-management app, but many of the basic features like reminders and email integration are available only to Pro subscribers for $29/year. I have now issues with the freemium business model per say, but I believe that the free option should offer all of the basics (of which reminders would be a part) and that the paid version would offer premium features for those who need them. I feel like Todoist is kind of cheating a bit in the freemium marketplace, because most of us need reminders and for that, you have to pay, kind of making the free version moot.
Must have an attractive and intuitive interface.
Todoist takes the Google approach to design. It’s a simple, but highly functional interface with lots of white space. Doing anything is merely clicking on the button or text link and filling in the info. Settings are changed by clicking on the gear icon. Although there is no drag-and-drop awesomeness in Todoist, the interface is simple enough to navigate with no learning curve.
Todoist is a very capable todo/task app especially if you’re willing to pay the $29/year to unlock all of it’s features. It offers a simple, but effective interface that will appeal to those who like Google’s design esthetic. Although I wanted to like this app very much, the fact that basic features like reminders are tied only to the pro version, I can’t offer my recommendation. There are just too many free options out there that offer this feature.
What do you think about the limits of the free version of Todoist? Let us know what your opinion in the comments below.