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Timeful for iOS helps you make time for the things you want to do

Task suggestions in calendar

Timeful for iOS is an innovative app for managing your time, tasks lists, and habits in one place. Where most apps tackle one of the three or provide a task list feature within a calendar app, Timeful actively works to integrate all of those in a way that helps ensure you make the time for the things you want and need to do. Timeful requires iOS 7 or later and is optimized for iPhone 5. Best of all, it's free!

When first run, the app asks for permission to access your calendar and reminders. It also requires you to create an account. (This type of thing bothers some users and the developers do nothing to explain why this is necessary, which doesn't help put anyone at ease. I'm personally not bothered by this but I understand that some are.) In the final stage of the setup process, Timeful provides a few suggestions for to-do items you can use to try things out as well as some habits you may want to begin. Whether you use any of the suggestions is up to you. Once you have completed the setup process you can create your own tasks and habits as needed.

Task view

As you enter new tasks, you can tell Timeful when you would like to do them. Part of the magic of the app is that you don't have to be specific. You can say "Today" or "Tomorrow" or "On" a specific date, but you can also say, "Sometime in the next 7 days" or "Someday before" a given date. When you return to your calendar, Timeful will begin populating it with your tasks suggesting times for each one. You can accept the suggestion by tapping the entry in the middle. You can defer it to tomorrow by tapping the rightward facing arrow on the right, or you can drag it to another place in your schedule for today.

If you have specified a time a given task will take (part of the task creation process), you can drag the task from the top of your calendar into the day and it will expand to the right width to match the duration. In other words, an hour-long task will be an hour-long block that you can drag around your schedule.

Task suggestion dragged into calendar


In the example above and below, "Review site accessibility" is a task I have created that will take an hour or so to complete. When I tap on the task (shown above the schedule portion of my day) and drag it downwards, I can then drop it into my schedule and it will fill the correct amount of time (below).

Calendar view


Habits are handled in a similar fashion except you specify how many times a week you want to work on them, which days you prefer and which time of day (morning, afternoon or evening) you prefer. Timeful will then attempt to set aside time for those repeating events. Of course, you can move the various habits around to suit your needs. Timeful is supposed to learn over time from your usage and become smarter about picking times for your tasks and habits, but I have not used the app long enough to comment one way or the other on this.

Timeful is an innovative idea and fills an interesting niche in personal productivity apps. It may not serve all of the needs of the kind of person who uses tools such as OmniFocus or Things, but then again, the biggest problem is finding the time for everything. Timeful attempts to fill that gap and does it very well. It's free and that makes giving it a trial run a no-brainer. Though, I would recommend giving it more than a few days so you have time to get used to how it works and what it does.

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