I have been searching far and wide for a to-do list app that stands up to the challenge of my busy life. Most recently I have taken to trying out Wunderlist, a highly regarded app in the world of to-do lists. They have a beautiful and clean UI and the ability to customize the background of your to-do list (limited choice of backgrounds unless you upgrade to pro for 4.49€). While the app and the web site have an extremely nice UI there are a few very big features that I found to be lacking.
Collaboration in free version
Most of the other free to-do apps give you at least the ability to collaborate with a severely limited number of people you can collaborate with like between 2 and 5. Wunderlist does not allow any collaboration between users on a free account. This was a big turn off because sharing to-do lists even with a small group is a big deal and without a free version there is no way to test the group features without paying for the app which I believe both users have to be upgraded for collaboration to work.
No Tags / Categories
One of the things that I really liked about apps like the built in Tasks app on Android is the ability to create tags and search for tasks with tags. While Wunderlist does have a really good search feature, you have to know what it is that you are looking for in order to find it. I guess you could use the lists feature to group all the tasks in a single category together, but then things get complicated like a work task that has multiple sub tasks.
What you can do is assign sub tasks to a main task and work off a list inside a list, but if any of these sub tasks has a sub-sub task you have to forget it. A sub task cannot be assigned a notification, or due date independent of the main task nor can you write notes on them like you can on a main task. The idea is a good start but there seems to be more to be done here.
After installing the web app on Google Chrome it was unclear how the app worked. When I clicked the Wunderlist icon in the top corner of the screen I assumed that it would open with a box prompting me to add a task to my to-do list, but alas nothing happened! I did notice that on sites like Twitter when I hit the more button under a tweet I could create an item on my Wunderlist straight from the tweet, which is a really nice feature. I had been hopping that it would have been more like the Evernote addons that opens a dialog box like this which allows a lot of information to be captured on the spot.
A nice little dialog box does show up in the twitter window like this, but it is a little heavy on the graphics and took a few seconds to load while I expected it to be immediate. I was very happy to see that I was not redirected to the Wunderlist inbox to complete the task so kudos there.
The app has a very nice clean feel to it, all the gestures to move between the to-do list and the side menu was very clean and intuitive. I like the consistency, that when I changed the background on the desktop version of the app, the one on my phone had the same background. Adding a new task was just as simple as when you are adding a task online. I am partial to the full feature adding tasks, I like to be able to add date, reminders, notes and everything in a single gesture. In the app as well as online you have to tap (on the computer double click) the task to add all the little details. Generally I would like to see all those options in a single action.
All the icons in the app are simple and cute, making it enjoyable to use. Their trash can is just adorable! I did find a very minor GUI mistake that I’m sure the developers at Wunderlist will pick up on and fix. When you tap on a task to edit all the details of it there is a little gray bar at the bottom that says who created the task and when but its a slightly darker gray text on a light gray pattern making it impossible to read.
Something that I have been seeing to be lacking in a lot of apps is the creation of a home screen widget. It was a little off putting that there was only a single size widget, I would have liked to see a widget taller than 2x3. Also the little arrow in the top right corner to move between lists was a little small and hard to press.