10 Time-Tracking Apps That Will Make You More Productive In 2014

The new year is here. Don't waste it. Track it, and make your time work for you.

My favorite tools to keep track of my time are, honestly, pen and paper. What I lose in snazziness, I make up for in flexibility. I don’t have to turn on my computer or phone, which means I’m better about recording "off" hours. Since I’m not beholden to a spreadsheet or categories, I can describe my time however I want.

However, in this age of apps, many people want something a little more fancy. Lots of businesses need to keep track of employee time, and so the time-tracking product category is pretty crowded. What I like about the 10 apps in this post is that they can also help you monitor aspects of your personal time, so you don’t lose days to web surfing and TV—unless that’s what you really want to do.

1. Toggl

With this app, you say what you’re doing, start the timer, and stop it when you’re done. You can code things as personal if you’d like, and create charts of what’s consuming your time. The basic version is free, and full features are $5 a month. Apple, Android, and Desktop.

2. RescueTime

Running in the background on your computer or mobile device, the free version of RescueTime tracks minutes spent on various sites or applications. This is most useful if you think you have a bad email or Facebook habit, and would like to get it under control. The premium version ($9/month) lets you track time away from the computer, too, and block distracting websites after a desired amount of time. Apple, Android, and Desktop.

3. ATracker

This free app lets you track your whole life by tapping on your phone to start or stop each activity. It then produces reports on your day. The clean and uncluttered design is a nice plus, too. Apple only.

4. Eternity

Structured to remind you about work-life balance, Eternity divides time broadly into work, sleep, and play categories. Play is good! $9.99 in iTunes. Apple only.

5. Now Then

This app features personal categories such as shopping, entertainment, and travel, and lets you break work into its subcategories as well (administration, meetings). $2.99 in iTunes.

6. TIME Planner

This free app combines scheduling and time tracking features for both work and personal activities. You can schedule a bike ride at 1 p.m., then be reminded to do it, then say if you’ve actually done it—all to keep yourself on track. Apple only.

7. My Minutes

This free app focuses on goal setting. You aim to work out for 30 minutes, or spend "at most" 45 minutes on email. The app gives you a nudge when you’re out of time, or a virtual pat on the back when you hit your goals. Apple and Android.

8. Fanurio

While primarily aimed at freelancers billing time to multiple projects (it creates invoices and expense reports—hence the price), Fanurio also lets you classify activities as non-billable, which much of our personal time turns out to be. This app nudges you to record time if you haven’t in a while. $59 for a license with free technical support for a year. Primarily for desktop (Mac OS + Windows + Linux).

9. Timely

Schedule your life, then log it. Primarily aimed at work time (you can bill time as you’re logging it), the interface is simple enough that you could create personal projects too. One user with unlimited projects is $10/month. Desktop or Apple devices.

10. Timesheet

This free app lets you use voice commands, track and bill work hours, and record off-work hours too. Android only.

What time-tracking apps do you use and recommend?

[Image: Flickr user Brian Suda]

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  • Stefanos Kozanis

    Thank you for this nice list! You may also give a try to our time-tracker site: timefyme.com (https://timefyme.com/) which is free for personal use and with a flat rate for teams (5€ per month, whatever the size of team) having some nice features like task switching without typing, statistics, graphs, data import and export, and more.

  • I would suggest Easy Hours for iOS and Android (http://easyhours.30xi.com/). It has all of the basic time card features and then a lot more. Plus its incredibly user friendly. We use it for our own timekeeping. Check it out on the App Store (https://itunes.apple.com/app/id688640127) or Google Play (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.thirtyxi.handsfreetime).

    Full disclosure: we are the developers of this app but based on our customer feedback it does actually save both time and money.

  • ShaneFP

    Really interesting and informative list, thank you.

    Have you tried Flapps Time Tracking software?

    It is a web based employee time tracking solution with features such as invoicing, expense tracking, and project cost management. They cater for small and medium corporate clients along with providing enterprise solutions for large multi-national companies.

    It is incredibly customizable software that starts at only $1.95 per user and is available for free on iOS and Android.


  • Pavel Ovchinnikov

    Interesting review! I myself believe that that Excel is the best tool if you are to organize you work day. However, if your life is more dynamics than sitting at the desktop and just work, mobile app is the best tool to get your activities in one place.

    All the apps mentioned are "start-stop" apps have disadvantage that user just forgets starting the clock and sometimes stopping that. For that I came up with different approach when clock runs on its own and use just has to fill in the actuall activities that were finished. Have a look at TDouble (http://tdouble.weebly.com/ and https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ru.vertigo.time.tracker). It is easy and free even for import/export feature.

  • I just found this free app Time Tune and it is a God send! It's exactly what I was looking for. Helps me plan out my day in time slots. It is ingenious and life changing! Highly recommended.

  • Erik Petersen

    Hi, we use OOLYO.com - it's a really good timetracker, priced very reasonable (2.00/user), has a timer function, reporting, exporting, tracking billable hours, and billing by letting us put an hour rate to each task.

  • Taras Baca

    Hi Laura, good list. Will you be updating the list in 2015 as well? Time tracking apps evolve constantly. Toggl for example is about to release Business plan at insane $59 per user/month, with enterprise features that many other apps including us at http://www.flapps.com already have had for years. You could include the value aspect in your list, time tracking apps such Harvest, Tsheets or Flapps should then be in it. Price per user is important as you pay it monthly, in larger organizations it can come to a huge difference within few years.

  • Alex Nowak

    Hi Laura! Thanks for sharing. I was working as a freelancer as well as in bigger companies and I was always using and am still using http://www.timr.com timr keeps track of working hours and project time as well as project budgets and let's you define hourly rates. It comes with a team tracking feature and mobile apps that work online AND offline Definitely worth every dime.

  • Laura Chancey

    Very useful article! Thank you! But I'm surprised you didn't mention <a href=”http://kanbantool.com”>KanbanTool</a>. KT's time tracking tool is so easy and intuitive. I still use free trial of it and I was thinking about trying something else, but after reading your article I can see that every time tracking app is not free, so there's no point in changing this for other app. I like Kanban Tool, has more options that just time tracking, so I will stick with it.

  • Frank

    Here's one that I wrote a few years back and have used ever since. It's a Windows desktop app and just recently decided to share it with anyone who's interested.


    It's free, really small, quick to use and makes it really easy to fill out your timesheets.