Just Do It: Top 5 Productivity Apps to Use in 2018
If you have been wondering lately if there is a way to increase the efficiency of your work then seek no more. There's a myriad of both Android and iOS apps that will let you better organize your workflow, manage schedule and collaborations.
We've selected Top 5 productivity apps that will make you a true productivity wizard.
Any.do: Groovy to-do list
Any.do is an absolute champion when it comes to making to-do lists and here's why:
- Your to-dos and agendas can be sorted out by categories: Work, Personal, Someday etc.
- The tasks can be pinned to specific dates, thanks to the integrated calendar.
- You can make shopping lists.
- Set time alarms and notifications.
Besides every task you're intending to accomplish can be supported with comments, illustrated with pictures, videos, voice memos, and subtasks.
- Task - Write a bestseller.
- Buy a Hemingway-like briar pipe.
- Travel to Jökulsárgljúfur in Northeast Iceland for inspiration.
- Get a laptop.
- Locate the nearest coffee shop.
- Begin writing.
Collaboration on your to-dos is possible as well, and it's synchronized pretty well, but it's strictly limited in the Free version: partners can't share too many projects.
Besides the paid Pro account allows you to:
- Choose various colors and tags.
- Personalize themes of the interface.
- Set the recurring agendas.
- Use the Moment feature limitlessly.
- Make geo-reminders - whenever you pass by a certain place, e.g. a drugstore, the app will alert you to buy aspirin, cough syrup or whatever you need.
All this luxury comes at a price of $2.99 per month, billed every year.
Any.do plays a role of your personal secretary just fine. Besides, it can help you win more spare hours every day through smart time-management, even if you don't feel like parting with 3 bucks a month.
Forest: Plant the seed to your success
To some staying off of the smartphone with Subway Surfers, Crossy Road and a ton of messengers seems to be an insurmountable challenge. If you struggle with this addiction too then, Forest is definitely your go-to to kill or at least mitigate it.
Forest is a sort of game itself, only it paradoxically rewards for staying from your gizmo for a fixed period. As soon as you set the timer, from 1 to 60 minutes, you can see a tree beginning to grow slowly. And your goal is to let it grow big and strong by staying in real life and doing some honest hard work.
The moment you touch the phone to launch a time-devourer, e.g. Instagram, the tree tragically dies, and you lose. The more phone-abstinence sessions you complete - the more trees will grow. And if you subscribe to Forest on Cloud, you can compete with other people at this persistence race.
In case you actually need to use certain apps on your device as a part of work, they can be whitelisted, and Forest won't reprimand you for grabbing the phone. Once the session is over, you can have a time-limited break to relieve your cold turkey.
Forest is free to download, but the Premium grants you with peachy extra features:
- Rub how patient you are in your friends' faces online.
- Make your own creative, motivating messages like "Return to work!"
- Even with obscenities if you want.
- Synchronize your "forest" across devices.
- Earn credits and spend them on planting a real tree through the Trees for the Future program.
Forest is a creative app that babysits you and tricks you into being focused, turning the arduous task into a rewarding competition.
Cozi Family Organizer: No more desperate housewives
Any mother of the family knows, that running a house and keeping it intact can be as hard as running the whole country. In fact, giving orders from the Oval Office seems to be easier at times.
And that's when Cozi Family Organizer comes in to make it all less challenging and stressful. With the help of this app you can:
- Schedule piano lessons, karate classes, and school recitals to never miss them.
- Keep in check the information regarding family members' health: blood types, allergies, doctor's appointments etc.
- Make shopping lists with an option of adding to it some recipe ingredients.
- Set birthday reminders.
- Plan and allocate house chores.
- Leave individual notes.
You can add a family member through an email invitation (10 maximum) and assign to them a specific color, which makes arranging activities for them much easier. Pets can be added to the list as well, but they have no email addresses for obvious reasons.
However, Family Organizer has a few serious security breaches:
- The whole family has one single password, which means anyone, including mischievous kids, can log-in as "mom" or "dad", provided they know the parents' emails.
- Anyone can alter the grocery list without an approval barrier.
- The whole family can view individual notes.
At least it's possible to program family's plans one week ahead and then distribute it among the folks via email.
Cozi is free, but there's a Premium version which liberates you from ads and removes a few functionality restrictions for $49.99 annually.
Cozi Family Organizer, although imperfect, remains the best mobile app for coordinating the family life.
Day by Day: Adopt a helpful habit
Day by Day is a pretty and simple app that will help you to inhabit your daily life with some good habits.
It follows the psychological method of the unbreakable habit-chain, in which you repeat some action every day until it becomes your second nature. To make such a quest a bit easier, Day by Day offers you a juicy, colorful and clean interface and also a couple of nice features.
First, tap on the + button and create a habit. You can give it a name, such as "Yoga" or "Flamenco Guitar". Then you can assign to it an icon that suits your activity best: bicycle, barbell, kitty face, dollar bill etc.
After it's done choose a color. It's worth being mentioned that the app's color palette is very eye-friendly and vivid. Probably its vibrancy somehow affects your subconsciousness, making you feel energetic.
Finally, you can select days of the week when you're going to work on your goal, leave a note on each day, set a reminder and pick the overall number of days during which you're going to adopt the desirable habit.
Sadly the free version is a bit meager and allows you to make only two habits. At least you can backup and restore your progress via cloud storage, or ZIP archive should something happen to your phone.
Day by Day is a laconic and smooth app that will gladly become your habit coach.
Asana - Collaboration genius
Asana is a potent tool for managing projects and overall workflow. Ironically, it has no fixated structure, offering only a couple of pre-made templates instead:
- Meeting Agenda
- Product roadmap
- Employee Onboarding
And a couple of others. Mostly it's up to the team to set up their own project structure that includes tasks etc.
With Asana you can:
- Give an individual task to every member.
- Set subtasks.
- Track the progress and performance of every person.
- Be notified about changes.
- Set the low/medium/high priority.
- Leave comments.
- Communicate with the team via a native message board or Slack.
- Use the Gantt chart, Kanban etc.
Asana's Free version, however, limits some of the functionality (no Timeline view) but still allows up to 15 members to be engaged in one project. The paid version unlocks the missing extra features for $11.99 per person monthly, but it doesn't increase the "firepower" of the team. It's still 15 people. However, Asana's tech support is excellent and reacts swiftly.
Asana is very flexible and very rich in terms of functionality. This is the reason why it incessantly makes it to the top of project-managing services. It is a bit pricey, but it works hard for every penny you invest and odds are you won't want to part with this platform in future.