Which is the Best To-Do List: Wunderlist vs Todoist?

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If you’re looking for a productivity app there are plenty to choose from. One of the more popular is the to-do list manager. Two of the largest, Wunderlist and Todoist do the same thing slightly differently, so which should you use? Let’s put them head to head to find out which best to-do list, Wunderlist vs Todoist.

I have something of a love/hate relationship with to-do lists. I love that they are helpful and remind me of the tasks I need to do that day, week or month. I also hate them in that they remind me of all the tasks I need to do that day, week or month. However, productivity is the keyword of the year and to-do lists can help with that!

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Wunderlist

Wunderlist is a cross-platform to-do list that can also organize smaller tasks and projects. It works in a browser on a mobile app across all OS. It is an attractive app with configurable backgrounds to make it look good or integrate into your device. It offers a multitude of tools and tricks to organize your life in a simple, easy to use UI.

Strengths

Wunderlist interfaces neatly with apps such as Zapier, Slack, Sunrise Calendar and Dropbox, along with around 500 others. This adds a huge range of potential features to the app. It is also simple to use, free (with a premium option), has no ads and is pretty streamlined considering how many features it has.

Using Wunderlist is a breeze. It is simple to add and manage tasks, organize lists and add detail to each. You can then add reminders, tasks within a task, notes and set up recurring tasks and then order them in order of priority. It also offers syncing across OS too, which is ideal.

Weaknesses

Wunderlist does have weaknesses though. Managing tasks can be a bit onerous, for example, adding a subtask flips you to a different UI, which makes managing them all a little more work than it should be. I also found that while it can sync across OS, it is a little hit and miss. A few were missed entirely during my testing. Fortunately, I was tracking them in the main app.

Other weaknesses include an attachment file limit of 5MB for the free version and a 25 task limit. Wunderlist is also now owned by Microsoft, which could mean either good things or bad. Finally, it doesn’t work with IFTTT which is a shame.

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Todoist

Todoist is equally feature rich and easy to use. It has a very simple UI that disguises the utility of the app nicely. It means you can get on with adding and managing tasks without any unnecessary fluff, yet find extra features quickly should you need them. It also has a free and premium option and works across operating systems.

Setting up and becoming productive with Todoist takes less than a minute. You can drag and drop tasks, sort them, schedule them, reschedule and add priorities should you need to. You can also add subtasks, notes and even share tasks.

Strengths

Todoist’s strengths are its simplicity and interoperability. It is simple to set up and use, simple to add and manage tasks and simple to do pretty much anything. It works with third-party apps such as Zapier, Google Drive, Cloud Magic, Sunrise Calendar and IFTTT. It also has a companion app for the Apple Watch if you use one of those.

The simple UI is one of its strengths too. The two-column layout works well across devices and makes it easy to manage lists and tasks. There are also some powerful organizational features too such as search, nested lists, filtering and natural language functionality.

Weaknesses

The main weakness of Todoist is that you really need the premium version to get the most out of it. Currently running at $29, only with premium can you get notifications, use context, labels and use attachments within your tasks. If you stick with the free version, you have to contend with a big red ad nagging you to upgrade. It doesn’t make for a great experience to be honest.

Configuration is a little weak too. You cannot rearrange the UI or customize it in any way. Neither can you manually sort your lists or add data very easily. The team behind Todoist don’t listen to user feedback either, which is not a good sign.

So which is the best to-do list, Wunderlist or Todoist?

To be honest, I like them both. They both get the job done, help manage tasks, lists and more. Both help me keep an eye on what I have going on that day, week, month or year and both make it easy to track my time like never before. Both work happily on my Windows PC and Android phone too.

However, I prefer Wunderlist. I like that I can configure it to look how I want it to look. I like that I am not penalized for using the free version with a big nag ad. I like that I can add data to tasks and that I can use it with Slack and Dropbox. For my money (or not), I think it is the better app with the brighter future.

Sure it doesn’t work with IFTTT and nobody knows what Microsoft will end up doing with it, but for me, for now it is the better of the two to-do list apps. Todoist is good but the overall feel is of an app designed by a company that just wants to give you enough in its free version to make you want to go premium. It doesn’t listen to users and that ad quickly becomes annoying.

They both get the job done, they both make you more productive, they both play nicely with hundreds of other apps and both work credibly well. Your mileage with each may vary of course.

Do you use Wunderlist or Todoist? Have a favorite? Let us know your thoughts below.

Posted by Jamie on November 28, 2016

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