Back when I first started writing for AppStorm, I got to review a very pretty GTD app that had just come out called Wunderlist. Back then, it was just getting started and it barely even had a Mac and a Windows app.
A little more than 6 months later, Wunderlist now stands as one of the most popular “Getting Things Done” app, not just in the Mac, but on several other platforms like Android and iOS. What has changed since then? Let’s take a look at how Wunderlist has evolved.
Getting Started with Wunderlist
Althought the GTD market is filled with options, none of them are really like Wunderlist. Just simple, down to earth and most importantly: free. It’s impressive to think that for such a banal task like having a list of duties (which we used to do with a simple physical notebook), we now purchase apps with prices that can go above $50 dollars.
Back when I first reviewed this app last December, it had only come out a few days before, and while it did a good job at keeping up with your tasks, it seemed like it had a long road ahead of it, one that seemed very promising. In my first review of Wunderlist, we gave the app a rating of 7, saying that it had a lot of potential given the time it had since it had been released. Well, I think that potential has been reached now.
Some Small Changes
Today, Wunderlist will come out with yet another update for their Mac app that promises to be quite big. We got our hands on it early so that we can tell you what’s new in the app. This update focuses on making it faster to add and organize tasks as you write them down, through simple shortcuts that arrange your tasks as you create them, for example:
- If you type an asterisk before the text of a task, it will be added as a “bookmarked” or “prioritized” task.
- You can use hashtags to mark tasks by simpler dates, like “#today”
- It also recognizes dates in a simpler, more human format, like “in a month”
- Note management has improved with auto-save and support for multiple windows
- If you create a task by pressing Alt+Return, it will be created at the top of the other tasks (and below the bookmarked tasks)
- While you are creating a task, you can use the “Up” and “Down” buttons to switch between lists in which to create the task
These are all handy shortcuts, but are they really a big deal? You might update the app and never even notice any of these changes. This update by itself probably isn’t worth a new review, it’s the accumulation of everything that has happened to Wunderlist since we last reviewed it that makes it worthy of a revised review.
A Unified Platform
A few days after my first review was published (actually the same day it was published, as you can see in the comments), the iPhone app for Wunderlist came out, giving the app a whole other level of functionality. The guys at 6wunderkinder got working hard, and soon an Android app, an iPad app and several updates for the Mac and Windows apps were on their way.
Now, the “Sync” button actually makes sense, and you can use it to keep track of your tasks wherever you are. There’s even now a web app, so that you can quickly check stuff while you are on the go and don’t have any mobile device available. The functionality that Wunderlist has now when it comes to platforms, reminds me very much of another favorite of mine, Evernote; whose support for numerous platforms has saved me a bunch of times.
The Big Picture
A few weeks ago, I started getting emails every morning from Wunderlist. At first I thought they were annoying, but then I realized what they did: they informed me of all the tasks I’d created that were overdue This may not seem like a big deal, but I’ve found it to be very helpful. Now, I don’t even have to open Wunderlist to see the tasks that I need to complete that day, I just check my email in the morning (which I always do) to see what needs to be done. It’s also inspiring that each one of them has a different cheesy tagline saying something like “You can do it, tiger!”.
This, coupled with a few other updates that the app has gotten like Note support in the tasks, sharing lists with colleagues, and especially the platform support mentioned before have made me a big fan of Wunderlist.
I never seriously used a GTD app before Wunderlist. Most of them seemed too expensive and complex; I always thought they were made for people who had thousands of things to do in a day and needed to keep everything organized. It wasn’t until I got to review this app that I realized how useful these things can be, even if you don’t really need to be reminded of dozens of tasks.
I continued using Wunderlist after that review I did, and I gladly watched it grow into a fully featured app that continues to improve with each update. I couldn’t compare it to any other GTD app, but the fact that it made me continue to use an app from a category that I had no interest in, should speak pretty well about it.