Daily Android App: Astrid Tasks & To-do List



It’s a new year, and as is the custom, people make New Year Resolutions. Many people make resolution’s to loose weight, get fit and keep organised. I made one of these; to be more organised. So I started to research ToDo apps in the Google Play store. I found many, so decided to make an app showdown, pitting each against each other.

To do this (no pun intended), I chose several criteria I wanted from the app:

  1. An attractive and easy to use interface. This may seem silly, but a boring or dull interface isn’t going to make me want to use the app, so if it’s attractive, I will be more likely to use it. Ease of use is also a must. I don’t want to take five minutes to add a task.
  2. Cloud synching/online backup. The last thing I want is to loose all my tasks if I loose my phone.
  3. Compatible with third party apps or have a desktop program. In this day, people use more than one device to access their email, texts and twitter feeds. ToDo’s, to be useful, should be the same. We’ve all had that moment when we think of something but don’t have our todo list to hand.
  4. Free to use. I don’t want to be paying a monthly subscription to have to use a service. Ideally, I’d like the app to be free too, or at least a reasonable price (under £2.00/$3/€2.50)
  5. collaborative lists. Living with a young family with lots of appointments and tasks to complete, collaborative lists are a useful feature. My wife can make a list of chores she wants me to do and they will alert me when they need doing. If she texts me, tells me over the phone or first thing, I can guarantee I will forget before I put the phone down. With an app on my phone to remind me, this is much less likely.

The first I came upon was Astrid, by Astrid Inc. This app is a simple yet powerful app. It’s free on the Play store (with a version available on the iTunes store too), which has an accompanying web app.

1 – Interface:

Astrid has a very simple UI, which hides some very powerful and useful features. It has a plain white theme, and all the tick boxes are coloured depending on the priority of the task. Tap on a task to add details like due date, priority, list, estimated time to complete the task, reminders and who should complete the task. Another useful feature of the app allows you to even time how long you take to complete the task.

This is the app main screen on a tablet
This is the app main screen on a tablet

The picture above shows you what Astrid looks like on the Nexus 7 (It’s also the only app that had a specific tablet UI, all the others were just a stretched version of the phone