11 Great iPhone To Do Apps

Manage your tasks with the best to do apps

Managing a to-do list can be a real pain, especially if you're still using old-fashioned pen and paper to keep track of everything you need to get done. Fortunately, there are tons of to-do list apps for iPhone that make getting organizing and being productive much easier. With alerts, notifications, and the ability for multiple people to manage and complete tasks, these iPhone to-do apps will keep your life organized. 

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2Do app
image copyright Beehive Innovations Limited
What We Like
  • Different views including "Next 3 Days."

  • Apply tags or attached notes to to-dos.

  • Easily customizable.

What We Don't Like
  • Many features require in-app purchases.

  • Interface is cluttered and confusing.

Some people may balk at the price tag, but the 2Do list app is packed with features and has a ton of functionality. You can assign actions to each task—like phone calls or emails—and the app syncs with your contact list. The tabbed interface is easy to navigate, and 2Do also brings voice recordings, alerts, Twitter integration, and a wide array of customizable features. It can be a bit confusing to use at first, but the 2Do list app for iPhone is a clear winner. Overall rating: 5 out of 5 stars. 

Updated 2018: 2Do has drastically changed its pricing. After raising the price to $14.99 in 2016, the developer has now made the app free, but with in-app purchases that unlock pro features such as sending to-dos to the app via email, syncing content with Dropbox and the iOS Reminders app, time- and location-based alerts, and more. The app also offers an Apple Watch app and an iPad app.

Download 2Do

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Any.Do to do list app


What We Like
  • Simple, modern interface.

  • Supports Siri shortcuts.

  • Grocery lists automatically sort by department.

What We Don't Like
  • Monthly or annual subscription required.

  • No Google calendar integration.

  • Some issues with syncing with browser interface.

A new addition to the list in 2018. 

Any.do (Free, with in-app purchases) is a widely used productivity tool that combines to-do list functionality with calendar and reminders features. The app follows you wherever you go, with versions that run on the iPhone, iPad, Mac, Apple Watch, and on the web. Use it to manage calendars and tasks, to assign tasks to family members, and sync with other services like Google Calendar and Outlook. Not Reviewed.   

Download Any.do

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Awesome Note 2

Awesome Note app
image copyright Brid
What We Like
  • Robust app with lots of features.

  • Manages iOS Calendar and Reminders in one place.

  • Highly customizable.

What We Don't Like
  • Learning curve necessary for so many features.

  • Occasional syncing glitches.

Awesome Note 2 (US$3.99) is a full-featured list app that offers plenty of customization options. Managing your tasks and to-do lists is easy, and the app syncs with Evernote and Google Docs. I also love the monthly calendar view for getting an overview of your tasks for the coming weeks. Since Awesome Note has so many features, it can take some time to figure out how everything works. Overall rating: 5 out of 5 stars.  

Update 2018: Awesome Note now offers an Apple Watch app, writing and journaling features, the ability to Touch ID-protect the app and folders within it, and more. It also packs in features for creating and managing notes (now with iCloud syncing), calendars, and reminders.

Download Awesome Note 2

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Clear app
image copyright Realmac Software
What We Like
  • Simple and elegant app.

  • Lists can be customized separately.

  • Intuitive interface.

What We Don't Like
  • Persistent syncing problems reported.

  • Can't share lists.

Clear (Read Review; $4.99) is perhaps the most beautifully designed and most iOS-specific app on this list. It uses the iOS's multitouch interface to terrific effect, letting users manipulate and create to-dos with natural pinches, swipes, and drags. The interface—which is structured around tasks, rather than days, and limits to-do length to the width of the iPhone's screen—won't work for everyone, but for those it does, it's likely to work very well indeed. Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars. 

Update 2018: Clear has become more useful thanks to syncing with iPad and desktop versions, though the Apple Watch app was discontinued. It also supports Notification Center Widgets. In-app purchases unlock sound effects. The developer teased a major overhaul of the app in late 2017, but no new details have been revealed.

Download Clear

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Ita app
image copyright Nice Mohawk
What We Like
  • Good for simple lists.

  • List items reordered by tap and drag.

What We Don't Like
  • Not useful for to-dos.

  • No notification or printing capability.

  • No update since 2015.

Ita's developers advertise it as both a to-do app and a list-making app (Free). Trying to be two things is a real problem in this case. As a list app, Ita is solid, if basic. As a to-do app, it lacks crucial features such as reminders, due dates, priorities, and a web version. If you just need to keep lists without worrying about when you'll get things done, Ita is fine. But if you're focused on productivity, you'll probably need to look elsewhere. Overall rating: 3 out of 5 stars. 

Update 2018: Ita now has an iPad version and syncs across devices via iCloud. It also supports printing. No Apple Watch app available here. The app hasn't been updated since 2015. It still works, but it's clearly not in active development any longer. 

Download Ita

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MinimaList to do app

Davetech Co., Ltd.

What We Like
  • Extremely simple user interface lives up to app name.

  • Clever Focus Mode reinforces completion of tasks you start.

  • UI includes color options for people who don't like B&W.

What We Don't Like
  • Advanced options require in-app purchases.

  • No instructions or tutorial.

Another new addition to the list in 2018. 

Living up to its name, MinimaList (Free, with in-app purchases) is a stripped-down, black-and-white, text-heavy app designed to let you focus on your tasks and getting them done. It offers features including shared lists with other users, natural-language date input, a focus timer to help you track the time you spend on a task, support for Siri, Face ID and Touch ID for security, and much more. Not Reviewed.   

Download MinimaList

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TeuxDeux app
image copyright Swissmiss & Fictive Kin
What We Like
  • Recurring to-dos and voice-to-text capability.

  • Smart, uncluttered interface.

  • Great video tutorial.

What We Don't Like
  • Requires a monthly or annual subscription after 30-day free trial.

  • Navigation between lists is a little clunky.

The TeuxDeux app (Free) is an iPhone-specific version of the web app of the same name. Its stylish, spare interface places emphasis squarely on your to-dos but doesn't offer many features besides syncing with the web app and rearranging items. Its productivity focus will be perfect for some users, but others will require more features to get things done. Overall rating: 3 out of 5 stars.

Update 2018: TeuxDeux still has an appealingly spare interface, but it hasn't been updated with anything other than bug fixes since early 2017. The app is still backed by an in-app purchase-based subscription service, but the lack of substantial updates is a potential red flag.

Download TeuxDeux

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Thinglist app
image copyright US Software Professionals Inc
What We Like
  • Clever category-based interface.

  • Clear step-by-step entry.

What We Don't Like
  • Can't edit the categories.

  • App not fleshed out enough to be useful.

  • Not updated for current iOS.

Despite being last on this list, Thinglist isn't a bad app (Read Review). It's just too basic. Thinglist helps you create and maintain lists of, well, things. Want to keep a list of all the books you hope to read? Thinglist can help. But once you want to do more than that, Thinglist falters. It doesn't offer search, user-added categories, or advanced features like due dates or geotagging of locations. It's nicely designed, so if it adds features, it could move up the rankings, but for now, it's just too simple. Overall rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars. 

Update 2018: Thinglist's basic concept—creating lists around pre-defined categories—is still in place. The app hasn't been updated since 2016, though, which means it's not best for heavy users and probably not something that can be relied on in the long term.

Download Thinglist

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Things app
image copyright Cultured Code GmbH & Co.
What We Like
  • The Today view is laser-focused on to-dos and activities for a single day.

  • App is packed with features including a new Dark Mode for iOS.

  • Excellent app for GTD workflow users.

What We Don't Like
  • Separate purchases for iPad and Mac.

  • Can't interact with Calendar listings, only view them.

  • Glitchy with Apple Watch.

Things (US$9.99) is the only app on this list that wasn't in the original article. That was an oversight, since Things is one of the most popular, and most powerful, to-do lists out there. It's a complex app that takes a while to learn, but people who use it swear by it. Create lists and sublists, schedule and tag tasks, sync with Mac and iPad versions, and stay up to date from your Apple Watch. If you've tried the rest and haven't found the right tool, or just want to start out at the top, check out Things. Not Reviewed.  

Update 2018: Things has been updated with support for iOS 12, Siri Shortcuts, and many more features. With its frequent updates and support for the latest iOS features, it maintains its position at the head of the pack.

Download Things

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Todoist app
image copyright Doist
What We Like
  • Quick Add feature is lightning fast.

  • Bar graph for monitoring goal progress.

  • Siri integration and natural language input.

  • Syncs across 10+ platforms.

What We Don't Like
  • No text notifications.

  • Folders don't sync properly among team members.

  • Syncing between mobile and desktop is slow.

Like most apps on this list, Todoist combines a web version and an app to give you access to your tasks nearly anywhere you are. Those tools are powerful, organizing tasks by project, offering a smart, natural-language scheduling tool, and setting automatic reminders for any task with a time attached to it. The US$29/year premium version adds integration with calendar apps for a single view into everything you have to do for an entire day and expands the reminder functionality. ​Overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars. 

Update 2018: Still my preferred to-do app. The user interface has been refined and the app's smart enough to let you enter times like "next Tuesday" as dates and still get them right. A tag and category system helps keep tasks organized. Includes a helpful Apple Watch app.

Download Todoist

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ToodleDo app
image copyright ToodleDo
What We Like
  • Friendly, intuitive, and customizable app.

  • Packed with features.

  • View, add, and mark tasks complete on Apple Watch.

What We Don't Like
  • Interface design is showing its age.

  • Could benefit from more robust security features.

The ToodleDo app (US$2.99) has a simple interface that makes it easy to add new tasks to your to-do list. For each task, you can set priorities and due dates, assign it to a folder, schedule reminders, and more. Folders are especially helpful for keeping tasks organized. However, the ToodleDo list app (Read Review) has a confusing priority system, and I wish it would set app badges as a default. Overall rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars. 

Update 2018: Like most apps on this list, ToodleDo includes an Apple Watch app. In addition, it offers an in-app purchase of sound effects, but its interface looks cluttered and overwhelming. Very few updates have been made to the app in recent years, including no updates in over a year as of this writing. It's possible that ToodleDo is dying off.

Download ToodleDo

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