2Do Is a Killer Desktop-Class Task Manager for iPad

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2Do will be my task manager of choice going into the new year. I’m actually still finishing up a review of another task manager, OmniFocus 2, but when 2Do’s update hit the App Store, I just had to jump on board.

There are all sorts of 2Do apps out there. Some are affordable and pretty and simple, best used for grocery or quick task lists. Then there are apps like Things and OmniFocus, which tend to be pretty and powerful, but also pricier. 2Do feels like it breaks all of the rules with its iOS app. $15 gets you both the iPhone and iPad versions, as well as a feature set that is simulatenously as powerful or as basic as any user might need. Now, there is a pricier Mac version available, but I’ve found I haven’t needed it thus far.

What really strikes me about 2Do is the extreme level of customization and power behind the app. New GTD users will find it easy to just add tasks to different lists, add due dates, and then tick them off. Power users will have a lot more to play with, and there are things that the humble 2Do app can do that even gigantic suites like Things and OmniFocus simply don’t manage to accomplish on iOS.

Here’s just a quick list of my favourite features:

  • great visual date picker (and not the crappy default iOS time picker)
  • unique time picker for alarms
  • quick add mode for brain dumping new tasks
  • multi select for batch editing tasks
  • a great notes field that shows IN the task list (if you want it to)
  • very fast sync over CalDAV or Dropbox
  • great support for custom views of tasks
  • folder and tag support for tasks
  • a built-in “Inbox” if you like GTD methodology

The key to 2Do’s design is that it treats iOS as a first-tier operating system, affording it all of the power and flexibility that desktop apps get, but woven into an interface that works really well on a touchscreen. So, on the one hand, there are sliding panels like in most other apps, but there are also rare extras, like drag-n-drop date support and multi-select for editing several tasks at once (a feature that seems very hard to come by in mobile task managers). I have also been really, really impressed with breakneck pace of iteration in 2Do’s public beta tests and the rolling out of minor updates. This is a really good app, and I don’t think the major 3.0 update (which was released this Fall) should have been given away for free. I think it was very much worth paying for, but I got it for “free” because of the copy of 2Do that I bought several years ago.

I’d say the only major downside to 2Do at this moment is a lack of Windows support. I have to use a PC at work and it would be a lot easier to track my tasks if 2Do offered some sort of Windows client. However, tracking my tasks on my iPad (with the help of the Logitech Ultrathin) is still working out quite well.

$15 isn’t quite impulse-buy territory, but if you’re looking for the best combination of scalable GTD features and a bleeding-edge touch-optimized interface, 2Do is really my only recommendation.


Thomas

My name is probably Thomas (yes, it is). I'll be able to help you figure out why Evernote isn't syncing, or recommend your favourite new RSS reader to you. That's partly because I am enamoured with the iOS ecosystem and hardware, but mostly because I'm Canadian.

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