Best Free Reminder and To-do List for Android

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Introduction

Now that the mobile phone has become our constant companion, what better place to keep those to do list of things. In the Best Free Reminder and To-do List for Android, I will review many of the top Android apps dedicated to our quest to remember what to do next, and the best thing is they will all be free!   What do you need to do, today, next week, next month, or sometimes just later, we have all created to do lists. Remember the "Day Timer" that many of us carried around in the 70's and maybe still do? In the early 90's the PDA might have taken the place of your hard copy "Day Timer" and in the 2000's David Allen taught us how to get things done (GTD) by better organizing our to-do list. The Reminder and To-do List for Android will help you pick the best one for you.

Check back often and see if your favorite is on the Best Free Reminder and To-do List for Android or is there one on the list that you may want to try. Please leave your comments, your likes or dislikes about an app, and perhaps a to-do app that I should look at and review.

 
 
Discussion

Just a quick note Astrid was our top pick but it has had to be removed because it is no longer available.


When I downloaded and opened To-Do Calendar Planner also known as IsoTimer  I really was impressed at how quickly it loaded  and how the app synchronized with Google calendar by itself without me having to anything. As Android devices are connected to a Google account to enable downloading apps in the Playstore, the app instantly connected to my Google account and therefore my calendar. If you don't have a Google calendar account you will have to add your events and tasks manually or import via CSV file which is the only file type you can import into the app. Also be aware that backup and export data to file are both only available in the pay version. Synchronization with Google tasks is also a upgrade feature as I don't use Google tasks just Google calendar this wasn't an issue for me but it may be for other users. 
 
The calendar part of the app is nothing special, it functions very much the same as the stock calendar app (apart from being better looking) . You can use it as isoTimer Calendar adding tasks/ events to just it’s calendar  or use the calendar of the android system ( stock calendar ) as well as Google calendar . If you use it with the Google calendar that’s when you can sync all your calendar data together so when you add an event to one calendar it goes on them all, which is much easier and saves you risk of missing to add an important appointment to one of your calendars. There is also an option to link an appointment to a goal ( more about goals and such later on in the review.) Like the tasks/To-do section of the app the GUI is very attractive and easy to use. Adding events is a simple task just select the + button in the top right hand corner and choose to add either a appointment, notes or tasks and appointments/events can be linked to tasks ( more on the tasks section of the app below ). Reminders can be set for all parts of the app: calendar events, task, goals and notes, the reminders appear in the form of a pop-up or a status bar notification. Reminders can be set for any length of time before the event or task and you can set more than one reminder. Like many other calendars there is a choice of ways to display your calendar, daily, weekly, monthly or as an agenda. 
 
Although synchronization with Google tasks is not available the app supports a great To-do / task manager which can be displayed as a split view alongside the calendar. The To-Do’s/ tasks manager far exceeds Google’s task manager anyway as it has so many features and this is where for me the app shines. I’m still discovering new things I do with the tasks/goals section of the app. I found the GUI very attractive and easy to use. The task manager can be used to just set tasks or write notes but it also has a goal feature. The goal feature could be used for all manner of things like a school project or if you are trying to lose weight. The user can set out their goals in the 'my projects' section. There is also a 'big picture' tab within the tasks section where the user could list their long term goals for that month for example if they were trying to save money towards a holiday. The user can also use the ‘focus’ feature which is intended to help the user to fulfill the task or goal they have set themself.  I liked these features as they offer something a little different to the usual task managers around and I think they could be helpful if a person has a long term goal like saving money or losing weight. The task manager tab is a To-do / task list which allows for tasks to be sorted into lists depending on the task for example work or personal and the tasks can be tied in with 'my goals'. Notes can be added to the tasks as well as audio files, images and other files as well as contacts from your devices, locations can be also be attached to a tasks aswell.I was actually really impressed by all the things that could be attached to the task. Also iso Planner can be connected to Google Drive so any images and files you attached to an event/ appointment or task are also available/ backed up to a iso planner folder within your drive if you select that option.
 
Tasks can be set be as priority A B or C and task can be set to a date. Tasks can be attached to subtasks and set to repeat. Of course all of the tasks, goal etc can be set by date, or by date they need to be completed by and you will receive a little pop-up reminder if you have set your task or To-do to be completed by a certain date and time and you have yet to complete it. This is where the app can be used as a more basic reminder tool to just quite simply to remind you to do something at a given date and time.The task manager in this app could have all sorts of uses, use it as a basic to-do / reminder or any of the uses I have thought of but I’m sure each user will have their own ‘couldn’t do without it’ use for this app.Depending on your main use for the app you can set the app to open on Tasks , Calendar or Focus. The app supports a number of useful widgets available for placement on the home screen, there is no way this app is going to let you forget anything. With all these great features and attractive GUI I think I’ll being keeping this app on my tablet because it is so useful. 
 
 
 
Wunderlist kind of reminds me of a more simpler version of Evernote. Create notes, tasks and set reminders for them, all wrapped up in a simple to use attractive GUI.
To just use the app on your device you don't need to create a Wunderlist account but if you have more than one device be it Android or Desktop I recommend setting up an account then you have the ability to access your notes, tasks and their reminders wherever you are. In this review I am covering the Android app version of Wunderlist but in order to cover all the aspects of the app I will be mentioning the desktop version as I myself and others have mentioned in the comments love apps that have accross device compatible. 
 
To receive reminders on Android you need to have your notifications enabled in your devices settings and unlike Any-Do's unmissable  pop-up reminder you will just receive a reminder in the notification bar ( much like that of a missed call ).
Wunderlist doesn't have a permanent calendar on display and it doesn't display an agenda as such but all your task etc can be listed in date order if you wish or  you can change this settings to display your list alphabetically. Wunderlist has an attractive GUI already but if you wish you can change the theme and there a number of free themes available. 
 
Tasks can sorted into different folders to help you keep your work and social life separate but still enable you to use Wunderlist for both. Some folders are already labeled in the app to get you started but these can be renamed and you can add more. Any tasks/ notes you have created can be shared from within the app to other apps you have installed which could be really useful but I was unable to share tasks via Facebook or Pocket but I was able to share a task via email. If you would like to be able to share a task or task list you can connect Wunderlist with Facebook via the invite friends tab and share your list via to friends that way  but even after you have connected with facebook , sent your invite/ request to your facebook friend (your invite then appears in their Facebook apps requests ) they have to then sign up for an account with Wunderlist and finally they will able to have access to the task or task list you sent. It seems quite a long winded process to me to just share a task that could have quickly been sent in a facebook message or wall post but at least that way once your friend has an account you can work on the task separately but together within the app.
 
The user is able to import tasks/ list from Any-Do into Wunderlist the import was done with in seconds but there was the odd date missing from a couple of tasks but all in all it was seamless and speedy. There is also a back up feature so you can backup all your Wunderlist Data but if you create an account it's backed up to the cloud anyway and easier accessible if you buy a new device and install the app or need to reinstall the app. 
 
As I said Wunderlist reminds me a little of Evernote because you can create notes as well as tasks and reminders and it has a desktop web app/ web page. In Chrome browser there is also a web clipper extension which can provide a quick way of bookmarking a URL to Wunderlist or use it to highlight text on a web page and quickly add the text as a note to Wunderlist. So if you want a simple yet full of features task reminder to-do list note taking app with some browser bookmarking facility's built-in Wunderlist is for you. There is an article on Wunderlists web app on Gizmo's here.

 

Any.Do currently only works from the phone's RAM and cannot be moved to the SD card, this is due to the Android requirement for tasks that need to schedule alerts must be stored in the phone's RAM, a workaround is being researched. Any.Do takes about 10.49MB of storage.

Any.Do can be started from an Icon on your launcher screen or via a widget, several different sized widgets are included with the install. When the App is started and at the top of the screen  is the entry point for your task. The task can be typed in by pressing the Plus Sign Icon in the entry box or recited by pressing the microphone Icon.
 
To the right of the entry box there is a three vertical dot Icon, pressing this brings up the Set-up menu. In the Set-up menu the Date and Folder Icons give you the choice of how you want your tasks to be presented. The Sync Icon syncs your tasks across all the devices you have Any.Do installed on. The Gift Icon allows you to send an e-mail to any of your contacts to tell them about Any.Do. The Settings Icon brings up a sub-menu of configuration options, more on this later. The Help Icon also brings up a sub-menu which is self explanatory. By the way, the tutorial is rather limited although the App is easy to understand without the tutorial.
 
Within the Settings sub-menu you can add additional Folders, change the Theme (Black text on White or White text on Black), set the First Day of the week you would like your calendar to start on, your Language of choice, Done Tasks shows completed tasks to delete, Sounds for alert notification, and Backups to backup your tasks.
 
Your tasks can be assigned to a category pressing the Plus Icon next to the time category/ folder name Icon. A feature I really like is if you want to move a task from a time/folder to another you can "long press" on the task hold and slide it to another time/folder without cut and paste. 
 
If you want to set up task options a tap on the task will brings up task specific options just beneath the task.  The options are in this order, Priority to set the task as a priority item, Folder to assign the task to a folder, Alarm to set the time and date of an alert, note to add a note, and Share to pass the task on to others that you are collaborating with, they must also be using Any.Do.
 
On Android 4.0 and later the Near Field Communication (NFC) can be used to transfer via the Android Beam feature.
Tasks can also be set up by email, see web page FAQs for more details. FAQs can be found at here.
 
This is a very sweet To-do list application and once I have reviewed several others, I'll determine where this stands in regards to those.  Any.Do sets a high bar to be measured against for the other To-do List Apps.  I like Any.Do a lot
 
 
 
Remember the Milk (RTM) and I have started off on the wrong foot, I created a list of things in a note to be attached to a task. Well somehow that list was lost, probability by me touching the wrong Icon.  But no hard feelings, I'm here to give you a review on this App without prejudice, so here goes.
 
RTM has a nice clean presentation offering 6 options on the home screen. I like the ability to see today's, tomorrow's, and this week's tasks. You can also make lists, tags and add locations that can be used as a search option. To add a task you can pick one of the front screen Icons and press the "Plus Sign" Icon to type in a new task, I didn't see a way to speak in the task.
 
Pressing the Search Icon (Magnifier) allows you to search your tasks, lists, tags, or locations via a search argument. You can also build Smart Searches which can be saved for repeating your favorite search just by pressing the name of the Search in the Search list. You can also prioritize your tasks by date, priority, tags, location and more. Tagging allows various tasks to be identified based on the tag assigned to the task.
 
RTM can be synced with various Apps on your other devices. The on-line help will show which Apps and how to sync them up to your devices.
 
A "long press" on a task allows you to change the status of the task or to edit it.  Notes can be attached to a task by pressing the "Three Dot" Icon in the task window.  From the add note screen press the disk Icon to attach and save the note.  I couldn't find a way to search text in the note.
 
I would like to see "tool tips" pop up when hovering over an Icon,  the ability to search notes, a local help file although this already has a large memory footprint. In regards to the help function a web location is called up to get to the search engine.
RTM has a large memory app with lots of features, you need to decide if the memory size is worth the features.  Taskos ( reveiwed below ) has a much smaller memory footprint, it depends on the users needs.
Remember the Milk does come in a Pro version which currently has a yearly subscription of $25.00.
 
 
 
When I installed Taskos Task List I was impressed by its small size (1.26MB installed.) When I started the app I was even 
more impressed by its clean presentation, and ease by which you can add a task, type it in or use the microphone. You can even call a contact from within the to-do list. You can modify a task by adding a priority (high, normal, or low), placing the task in a category (you can add your own), set an alert (date and time), and add a note. You can sort your tasks by date, category, or priority. Tasko does have a tutorial attached and comes with two widgets (4x4 and 1x4 sizes.). When a task is completed it does go into a Delete list and all items in that list can be deleted at once.
 
Taskos does not have a calendar, but you can build a today, a tomorrow, a someday and any other list you desire, only one category per task.
 
I did have troubles syncing with Google tasks, and could not get the "shaking the phone to delete a task" function to work. I did try to contact the Taskos team via email to see if they are in the process of fixing these items, I did not hear back from them! The "Sync" screen title does say the process is in Beta. I don't know how long it has been in Beta or when it is expected to go live.
 
If you want a slim, easy to use To-do app Taskos could be the one, but only if you don't need to sync up with another device or with a PC to-do process.
 
More apps to be reviewed
Related Products and Links

You might want to check out these articles too:

 
Quick Selection Guide

To-Do Calendar Planner/ isoTimer
5
 
Gizmo's Freeware award as the best product in its class!

Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Very attractive GUI, very fully featured task/ To-do / goal feature
Google tasks sync and back up option only available in the paid version
8.4
5.3 MB
Unrestricted freeware
Requires Android 2.2 and up
Wunderlist - To-do & Task List
4
 
Combines a web service with a stand-alone program
Easy to use attractive GUI and access across devices ( iOS, Mac, Android, Windows and Web)
Large memory footprint
https://www.wunderlist.com/en/#!
2.3.3
15 MB
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
Android 2.2 and up
Any.Do
4
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Easy to use, clean looking presentation, install includes Widgets
Large memory footprint
http://www.any.do/
2.52
7.9 MB
Unrestricted freeware
Android 2.2 and up

A PC Chrome Store extension and/or app can be installed and synced to your phone's Any.Do To-Do list.
Chrome Store app
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/anydo/ocgddccilgpeepgglnlpchkp...

Chrome Store extension
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/anydo-extension/kdadialhpiikeh...

Remember the Milk
4
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Lots of features including: Smart Search, Location Search, Tag Search, and Syncing to other devices.
Large size, out of application Help (Help is on the Web), needs tool tips, Icons alone are not easy to understand, and only one sync per day.
http://www.rememberthemilk.com
3.0.16
2.4MB
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
Android 2.2 and up

There is a Remember The Milk Chrome Store app available
https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/remember-the-milk/chdiaibgndcp...

Taskos Task List
3
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Small size,clean presentation, easy to use, sort by categories, priority, and date, widgets included.
Syncing does not work and shake phone to delete completed task does not work.
http://taskos.com/
2.18
772k
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
Android 2.0 and up

 
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Tags

reminder, to-do,to-do list, android, mobile app, free to do list

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Comments

by tesla33 on 16. May 2014 - 5:47  (116243)

I am desperately looking for a Task/To Do List that can do these three things:

a) attach a photo as a note to a task, and
b) attach a Call Button/Contact Button to a task.
c) Have a proper task widget to add and complete tasks

As incredible as this may seem, there is not a single app (I am aware of) that can do all! Please, somebody tell me I am wrong.

P.S. I realise that Any.Do may actually be able to do that. But Any.Do can't do... uhmm ... anything else :) Others?

P.P.S. Good list, good write-up BUT as a Task/To Do List, I personally find isoTimer a really poor choice. The Task widget is useless, adding and handling of tasks and navigation in general is really convoluted and visually... well, the early 2000s called, they want their calendar back.
Also, not allowing tasks without due date is simply unacceptable.

by Juxxize on 18. May 2014 - 11:45  (116262)

a) attach a photo as a note to a task, and
b) attach a Call Button/Contact Button to a task.
c) Have a proper task widget to add and complete tasks
I know with iso timer you can add notes / photos plus other things to a task, you can also add contacts to a task ( but not call them as far as I'm aware I can't test the call feature because I'm testing on a tablet rather than a phone at the moment ). Your list is a really good list of features that I shall take in to account when searching for / reviewing future apps. Nothing springs to mind that offers all these features (apart from iso timer )but they are a good list of features that I'll keep in mind and be in the look out for new apps to reviews . At the moment I struggling to find anything better than what I've already suggested on here as you are probably aware there are loads of calendar / To-Do apps in playstore. I'm sorry you don't like my top pick each to their own , I picked it because it has tons of features , a calendar and to-do app plus lot's of different widgets but yes the task widget does not allow you to edit the task in the widget you have to go into the app it's self but if it's not for you there are other apps in the review that are more basic to-do apps rather than a calendar / To-do app like I prefer using.

by tesla33 on 8. June 2014 - 10:38  (116676)

Thank you for the reply. To be fair, a task list/to do is an app where a lot of personal preference comes into play and I think I need to make clear that while I personally would not use iso timer it is neither a bad or a broken app :) I tend to forget that my personal priorities are not generally applicable.
I will keep looking and - if that is ok - put my experience in the comments here.
Cheers ;)

by Juxxize on 21. June 2014 - 10:48  (116857)

yes please , this is how I/ we discover new, good apps .

by Deroc on 11. July 2013 - 3:16  (109111)

Could you review wunderlist as well? I like that it has a web page and sharing options as well.

by Juxxize on 20. February 2014 - 0:10  (114570)

DONE , please feel free to let me know what you think of my review on Wunderlist.

by IO.Hazard on 2. May 2013 - 15:56  (107437)

Astrid has been bought by Yahoo!. According to Astrid's site the app will keep working for 90 days starting from may 1st. Visit the app's site for more info about how to download your personal data.

by Juxxize on 20. February 2014 - 0:09  (114569)

Yes it's a shame because so many people liked it and used it , but I've got a lovely list of great apps I'm in the process of testing and I've added a note to the article to mention why I've removed Astrid from the article mention and why it was removed from our top pick . It's always a shame when big company's buy a great app or software and then because it's not making them any money it gets dropped like a hot potato, Winamp springs to mind

by djinni on 4. April 2013 - 4:19  (106801)

Thanks for the great review.

On my wish list - I would really love a combo PIM/email that espouses the light, non-intrusive (but super easy to use) interface of Rainlender Lite (Windows version), but also allows me to port data seamlessly between all my devices. I'm thinking this might be possible in Linux/Android, although probably not on the Windows platform(Macintosh may have something but I cannot afford to spend a fortune on hardware right now, so I'm pulling an anti-Eve and just saying no to the Apple, lol). So, does anyone know of some free software on the Android and/or Linux platform that would do this? Thanks.

by Explorer40 on 5. April 2013 - 11:50  (106837)

Thanks for your comments. I see you are new to Gizmon, welcome! Your application request would reach more people if you put it in our free forum, see Freeware Forum tab at the top of the page and then go to the discussion thread - "I Want a Freeware Program that ...". Hope you find something that help!

Again Welcome!
Explorer40

by kf4nxs on 29. January 2013 - 8:50  (104913)

Has any one tried Jorte calendar? I have it and wonder how it measures to any.do. It being a calendar it syncs to google and has tasks and such, but does any.do work the the android calendar or did I miss that. Great write up as well.

by Explorer40 on 29. January 2013 - 17:05  (104934)

kf4nxs, On the Any.Do FAQ page of their website, http://www.any.do/faq they state;

How do I sync Any.DO with my Google Tasks account?
On your phone's home screen simply press the 'Menu' button select 'Settings', 'Accounts & sync' then 'Add account'. Once you have set up a Google account with their Open Authentication (OAUTH) protocol you are able to select your account by opening Any.DO Press 'Menu' > 'More' > 'Accounts' and choose the account you wish to sync with.

I don't know if Google Tasks folds its tasks into Google Calendar.

I am currently evaluating a To-Do list app and after I complete that review I will research and review Jorte.

Thanks for your comment,

Explorer40

by mfcarpino on 4. January 2013 - 0:22  (104202)

I have used Astrid but switched to Any.do.... I think Any.do is better.. :-)

by Explorer40 on 4. January 2013 - 2:08  (104205)

mfcarpino: Thanks for your comment. I have not looked at Any.do, but will give it a look. Have a good New Year!

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