There are a number of ways to keep up with your daily tasks on iOS and there are thousands of apps in the App Store to help you when Apple’s default apps aren’t quite powerful enough for you.
24me is a smart calendar and to-do app that aims to manage your life:
24me gives you a “heads up” about everything that’s happening in your day by intelligently connecting to your real life, reminding you about what is coming up next and *automatically* taking care of things for you. The ultimate personal assistant you always wanted, 100% free
It’s a bold aim that really encompasses a lot of things and tries to cram them all into one, centralized app – many apps do just one of the things 24me is capable of.
24me mixes aspects of task management with calendar scheduling and reminders. By linking into other services and device functions, it also offers ways of quickly completing tasks which I think is the real beauty of this app.
On first using the app, you are greeted with an animation showing you how to use 24me and what it can do for you. There’s a lot to take in, and I must say I didn’t manage to remember everything I was shown.
The layout of the app is fairly simple, though, and will be recognizable as a calendar to anyone who has used similar applications. The color scheme is friendly with bright blues and yellows (the design itself is not iOS 7 translucent or flat, which may disappoint some) and gestures and swooshing sounds add to the friendly feel. Visually, the interface is a tad busy with many buttons, toggles and handles which can be used to open different menus or expand sections of the screen. On top of that, you get pop-out boxes when entering tasks or events which can make the screen feel very cluttered indeed.
If you allow it, 24me plugs into your iOS Calendar, Reminders and Contacts apps (as well as Facebook). I found that allowing it these permissions improved the experience massively as all of my calendars, events and reminders were brought into 24me and Contacts and Facebook have their benefits too (more on this later).
At the center of the navigation bar are three buttons that represent the three different ways of viewing your content: Calendar, Tasks and Notifications.
In Calendar view, you can see a vertically scrolling day view of all your events as well as scheduled reminders. At the top of the view is a horizontally scrolling day selector to view other days’ tasks. It’s easy enough to navigate and events can be selected and edited from this screen. The Tasks screen is reserved for just your to-dos organized by date. This makes it much easier to just see your to-do lists quickly instead of having them only available on a calendar. Notifications is self-explanatory and simply shows you all of your alerts for tasks that you may have missed.
Adding tasks and events is easy – manually type or dictate your event title and add things like time, date and location as well as notes and select which calendar you wish to add it to (events you create in 24me are added to your iOS Calendar and vice versa).
You don’t have to manually type tasks. Instead, and this is where 24me really excels in my opinion, is the ability to quick-add a meeting, phone call, text, email, errand (US only) or gift (US only) reminder or event.
By doing so, the app allows you to select the person from your contacts with whom you wish to schedule a call, for example, set the time/date and even share the event with them. What’s best is that when this event is due, or if you view it on your Calendar or Tasks screen, a phone icon will appear and allow you to quickly call the person without having to leave the app and go search manually for the person in your contacts. For meetings you can set a location and 24me will open your preferred maps app and navigate you to the destination you set or an email task will allow you to send an email to the contact you set without leaving 24me.
This functionality sets 24me apart and makes up for the cluttered interface as far as I’m concerned.
Unfortunately, I can’t comment on the ins and outs of the gift function as it is unavailable here in the UK but 24me lets users in the States be reminded of their Facebook friends’ birthdays and send them a gift in a few taps. Errands are also only available in the US and tie into TaskRabbit.
As well as adding events and tasks yourself, you can also “Link Your Daily Life into 24me” meaning you can have recurring reminders about things like bill payments or notifications from your banks populate your calendar automatically. Again, the full functionality of this seems to be for US providers only so I can’t judge its usefulness from here in the UK.
Further, I’ve experienced a few bugs with the app when adding new events, and especially so when switching between 24me and other apps via multitasking, causing it to stall or requiring it to be force-closed. This is disappointing as the app is smooth in most of its workings.
24me is a really powerful tool for managing all your daily tasks in one place. Being able to quickly call or email or text someone within the app is a great feature indeed. It takes a while to get into 24me and figure out the interface, something that will likely put off many users who aren’t willing to persevere for too long. I wish the app was a little more stable and, of course, I wish all of the functions were available internationally. For free though, you can have relatively few complaints about the app.
App Store link: 24me