Do It (Tomorrow)

AnyList

Lift

Doit.im

Handle

Trello

A List Of The 6 Best Alternative To-Do List Apps

Evernote is great, but it's not the only choice for productivity and to-do lists. Here are some up-and-coming apps to suit all personalities, from the type A's to the guilt-free procrastinators.

Mobile to-do lists such as Clear, Evernote, and Google Keep get a lot of love online, but they're not alone when it comes to high-quality apps to keep track of everything you need to do in a day.

In fact, a simple "to do list" app search on Google yields 1.9 billion results, a lofty number to sift through if you're already drowning in tasks. Thankfully, there are a few gems rising to the top of the to-do list category, including these six:

For the guilt-free procrastinator
Do It (Tomorrow) HD (iOS/Android - FREE; iPad - $4.99)

Let's face it, there are only so many hours in a day. When your to-do list is getting you down, it might be a good idea to efficiently procrastinate. Social media marketer CC Chapman is a fan of Do it (Tomorrow). Like most list-making apps, this one makes it simple to add a new task to your daily list. But what makes it special is how easy it is to push that item to tomorrow. "If I know I'm not going to get to something a quick swipe pushes it off today's list so I don't focus on it," says Chapman. The web version of the service lets you try before you buy.

For the team leader
AnyList (iOS - FREE)

While AnyList targets shoppers, the app has many features that can help you stay productive beyond just a simple grocery list. If you need a quick way to create a list, such as a tally of items to take on a business trip or a mobile reminder to keep track of office supplies that are running low, AnyList can help. After you create your custom list, you can share it so it instantly appears on a colleague's iPhone or iPod Touch. You can also use Siri to add items to your list (iOS 6 only), so you can tap and track on the go.

For the goal-setter
Lift (iOS - FREE)

While some list-making apps live in isolation, Lift engages your friends or colleagues for additional (motivational!) support. Once you set a goal, whether it's to finish off your first manuscript or learn French before your business trip to France, this app will help you monitor your process. Lisa McDonald from @those2girls likes Lift because "there's an accountability element to it." With one tap you can mark your progress and see it visualized in a handy little chart.

For the task-master
Doit.im (iOS/Android - FREE)

If you follow the Getting Things Done (GTD) philosophy, you'll appreciate this app that encourages you to dump all your to-dos into neat and tidy folders. Technology professional Troy Forster is a Doit.im fan. This app works best for project-based tasks, so you can manage timelines and deadlines. The makers tout more than 3 million users. While the free version may work for you for a while, the upgrade ($20/year) is worth it if you want additional functionality, such as the ability to add tasks via email and create reports.

For the inbox ninja
Handle (iOS - FREE)

For many business professionals, the email in-box is the only place where they manage a list of things to do. Following in the footsteps of Mailbox, Handle focuses on task management with email integration (first with Gmail, other email providers to come). The focus of this app is on prioritizing emails (triaging emails) you need to answer and things you need to do (using the labels "must do," "should do," and "want to"). Handle recently launched at TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2013, so you might be waiting a while before you get your hands on it, but it's bound to be a mobile favorite.

For the big planner
Trello (iOS/Android/Windows - FREE)

Social media professional Julie Tyios has a number of big to-do list projects, so she relies on an app that can handle a number of things. "Trello is really great, as it easily lets you re-prioritize without losing sight of what you need to do," says Tyios. With a Pinterest-like look, you can create task-based boards and manage to-do lists with a group of people. The app uses digital "cards" to manage little nuggets of information, so you can keep track of bite-sized tasks. Each card, which has a virtual front and a back, can be dropped into a custom list.

What's your favorite to-do list app? Sing its praises in the comments--so we can put downloading it on our to-do list.

[Tally Image: Flickr user With Associates]

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62 Comments

  • 01robbjohnston

    I liked your nice and exhaustive description about Trello. But there are other applications too which are quite good at task management. In our case, we use hitask http://www.hitask.com/ and we face no difficulty in managing in your tasks. Our tasks can be described clearly and perfectly through its To-do's. We receive timely email notifications which tell us about due dates of our tasks, so we can perform them timely without ever forgetting them. It has got labels for better identification, differentiation, filtering and planning over tasks. Managing tasks is such a smooth affair.

  • 01robbjohnston

    I liked your nice and exhaustive description about Trello. But there are other applications too which are quite good at task management. In our case, we use hitask http://www.hitask.com/ and we face no difficulty in managing in your tasks. Our tasks can be described clearly and perfectly through its To-do's. We receive timely email notifications which tell us about due dates of our tasks, so we can perform them timely without ever forgetting them. It has got labels for better identification, differentiation, filtering and planning over tasks. Managing tasks is such a smooth affair.

  • Andrew Phillips

    Thanks for the top, I like your categories! Why don’t you mention some all-in-one apps for productivity? For me it’s the best solution you can find to sustainably increase your productivity with a tablet. I used to ride with Beesy on my ipad, it’s a very nice all-in-app which would suits to almost all your categories (maybe not for the guilt-free procrastinator). The problem is that the app is only available for ipad and I don’t have an ipad anymore. Do you know some all-in-apps for Android? (By all-in-one I mean an app that handles your calendar, to-dos, projects, contacts, deadlines, reminders, etc…)

  • SQRES is a great way to tackle task management. This web-based task management app helps you manage and keep track of your tasks by color coding and placing them into various categories–assigned to you, due tomorrow, completed, etc. This easy-to-use online productivity app integrates with your Google Apps Account. What this means is that all of the tasks assigned to you via SQRES are automatically placed on your Gmail calendar, making it easy for you to see what you have to do and when. For more information, check out http://www.sqres.com.

  • manual transmission Rochester

    thanks for sharing the information keep updating, looking forward for
    more posts. Thanks 

  • Guest

    after trying so many apps, I came across 24me and its by far the best app I've ever used before! 

  • Cher Cabula

    I've been meaning to try using Trello for quite a while now. It seems too overwhelming to use at first though but it looks to be the app I've been looking for to get more organized.

  • Charles Miske

    Thanks for the recommendation, going to give Trello a try - hoping for the best

  • Reid Branson

    So sad that Astrid is going away. As far as I can tell, it is the only list-making app that allowed me to assign a task to more than one list, which was often quite helpful (eg, if I wanted a task to be on both my Friday and Weekend lists, that was possible, and if I checked it off one, it was also checked off the other). It is very frustrating that being acquired by Yahoo means the destruction of one of the best tools out there.

  • Winchestersteve

    I have tried almost all of these and a few others and keep going back to ToodleDo.

  • TLLHRC

    This is a great list!  I plan to review all the tools mentioned in the article and recommended in the comments.  The tool I currently use is Producteev.  I think it works really good with sharing with friends and colleagues and holding them accountable for the task they are assigned to complete.  I especially like the feature that allows you to take one task and them break it down into the smaller tasks that may be necessary to complete the original task.  For example, I have a task to obtain my PhD. But, in order to complete this task there are multiple tasks that must be completed.  For example, I'll need to decide on the school, complete the GMAT, complete a study course for the GMAT, etc.  I really would love to find a tool that not only allows you to keep track of the task you want to complete, but to also track the cost that may be associated with the task as well.