There are a lot of to-do list apps out there. All of them have the same purpose with a slightly different approach. But what makes Things 3 stand out so much? Here are 5 things I love about Things 3 and why it’s my preferred to-do list app.
1. The Inbox
This is the place where all my to-do list items land in first. Instead of figuring out under which project I should put my to-do, I drop everything in my Inbox. This makes it very easy to add new to-do’s on the go. It’s similar to the “In-tray” in the GTD methodology. You should work on reducing the friction between having an idea and storing it in the right place. After adding multiple to-do’s in my Inbox I can place them under the right project.
2. Today View
I use the Today tab a little bit different. I use it as my This Week tab. Before the week starts I choose which to-do’s I want to handle the upcoming week and give them a star in order for them to appear under my Today list.
I get a lot of questions about why I don’t use the Anytime, Upcoming, or Someday tab by adding a “This Week” tag and use the “Today” tab as it should be used. This is certainly an option which gets the same thing done. However, with tasks I want to get done on a certain day, I give them a deadline property which adds a flag with the remaining days right next to it. If I need to get tasks done Today, I will see them between all the other to-do’s with the red flag right next to it.
I think this is the main reason I switched from the default Reminders app to Things 3. Giving everything a tag and filtering it accordingly is very well build and is a very powerful feature.
4. Deep OS integration
Things has always prioritized user experience and user interface. The app feels very native, all the animations are on point and it’s very deeply integrated in the operating system:
- With the introduction of widgets in iOS 14, the developers behind Things were fairly quickly in adapting this functionality. I have the widget on my home screen which shows a preview of the to-do’s in my Today tab.
- If you use automation on iOS, you will appreciate the Siri & Shortcuts integration. You can ask Siri to do certain tasks for you or add a shortcut for adding a to-do in the app like I did.
The same is true for macOS. It works really wel on all Apple platforms and it has great shortcuts on macOS like ^control + space bar for creating a new to-do.
5. Forwarding email
You get an email with a task you need to do. Instead of opening Things and creating a task manually, you can forward the email to Things 3 which adds it straight to your inbox with the email body as your notes and a deep-link to the email. I use this feature a lot and it makes it very easy to add an to-do item from my email to the Inbox in Things.