Nick Summers is a technology journalist for The Next Web. He writes on all sorts of topics, although he has a passion for gadgets, apps and Nick Summers is a technology journalist for The Next Web. He writes on all sorts of topics, although he has a passion for gadgets, apps and video games in particular. You can reach him on Twitter, circle him on Google+ and connect with him on LinkedIn.
There is no shortage of mobile productivity and to-do list apps, but finding one that can intelligently pull in all of your daily tasks from external sources is a little less common.
24me is an advanced personal assistant on iOS, helping you keep track not only of your personal reminders, but also household bills, friends’ birthdays and important phone calls.
While the app has been available since last October, we’ve returned to it to take into account some of its most recent updates, which include expanded automation, support for additional service providers and financial institutions, as well as manual note sorting and passcode lock protection.
Finding your way around
The main screen shows all of your reminders in a simple calendar format, although rather than listing specific days, the app chooses to use ‘today’, ‘tomorrow’, ‘rest of the week’, and ‘later’. It feels a bit wooly at first, but in use it’s actually a very natural and human way of judging deadlines.
Adding personal tasks is also very straightforward. Users manually tap the “Add a new task” button at the top of the screen, choose a title and then immediately start adding in the appropriate details, such as what time it will occur, whether to set a reminder beforehand, its level of priority and any additional notes. Everything about 24me is lightning quick and more importantly, it never feels like a chore to add new tasks – a problem that often repels users from managing their schedule with a dedicated app.
Specific keywords, such as “call”, will force the app to automatically display other information on your device, such as your list of locally stored contacts. Tasks can also be set manually through the device’s microphone, using Nuance’s impressive speech recognition software. The results are very impressive; regardless of the speed or accent I used, the app picked up exactly what I was saying every time. There’s also the option to use a photo as the basis for a reminder, although in everyday use I found that it was rarely needed.
So far, 24me does everything you would expect from a to-do list and productivity app. From the home screen, tasks can be easily completed or dismissed with a single touch, or outsourced via TaskRabbit integration. While it’s simple, powerful and intuitive, it doesn’t do anything significantly better than the competition. However, if you’re living in the United States or Canada, the app can do a whole lot more.
Linking to other services
From the home screen, tapping the task “Link Your Daily Life into 24me” will send you to the MyLinks section. If you’ve signed up to the app with a Facebook account, you’ll notice that the “My Friends” area is already in full effect, drawing in related birthdays and events from the social network. This is available to everyone, and can be toggled on or off at a moment’s notice.
The “My Financials” option, however, will allow you to link the app to your bank account and synchronize any notifications or alerts that you would normally receive online. At the time of writing, however, only banks and credit card companies operating in the United States or Canada were supported. Similarly, the “My Providers” option, aimed at synchronizing alerts from your mobile phone, cable TV or Internet Service Provider (ISP), also listed companies based only in the United States and Canada.
The lack of support for financial institutions or service providers outside of the United States and Canada will be a massive restriction for international users. However, given that the app only launched last October, I wouldn’t be surprised if this was something the team was working on for a future update. As it stands, 24me is still a very competent mobile productivity and to-do list app; time will tell if that will be enough to differentiate itself from its already well-established rivals.
Note: An Android version of 24me will also be launched “in the coming months,” so keep your eyes peeled if this app has piqued your interest.
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Image Credit: photosteve101/Flickr
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