Gratitude 365 by Benny Hsu icon

Gratitude 365 ($0.99) by Benny Hsu is a beautiful way to keep track of what you are grateful for.

Even though I use Day One to keep a daily record of what happens in my life, I will admit now: I never use it to write down what I’m grateful for. I guess I took it for granted — don’t deny it, I can’t be the only one. So I’m thankful that Gratitude 365 is around (pun intended).

Gratitude 365 by Benny Hsu screenshot

With Gratitude 365, there are three different views: List, Gratitudes, and Calendar. You can navigate between each view by swiping left and right. Pretty easy, and makes sense, right? To add a new gratitude for today, you can add it from either the List (if there weren’t any yet) or the Gratitudes view with the realistic red bookmark.

Since this isn’t a diary or journal, the app will use a bullet point list for your day’s gratitudes. Just type out one and then hit return to add another bullet point. You can even add a photo for the day to go along with it.

The List view will display all of the days that you have had gratitudes for, and reveal the last gratitude that you wrote down. A thumbnail will be revealed on the right hand side as well, if applicable. The current day will be highlighted with in orange.

Gratitudes view will show all of the things you’ve written down for a day, and you can navigate through days by “pulling” the sheets of paper up or down. To go in the past, pull the sheets up; to go forward, just pull the screen down a bit. I love these gesture-based interfaces, because they just feel natural on iOS and touch screen devices.

The Calendar view will show the days that you have added to Gratitude 365. These days will be marked with a dot, or if they have a photo, the image will be in the square.

Regardless of which view you’re in, you can edit your entries by tapping on the “edit” button in the top right corner. This allows you to select multiple entries to delete. If you just need to change an entry, just tap on the text to edit.

Gratitude 365 by Benny Hsu screenshot

The app is pretty self-explanatory and easy-to-use. But what about the times when you want to get your data out? Just access the app settings, where you can find a passcode option, backup and restore, and export options. You can also save images to your Camera Roll as well. The Export option will package up your data in an .RTF file, which you can extract through iTunes File Sharing. Creating a backup just allows you to restore it to that same state. Additionally, you can link up your Facebook, Twitter, or Flickr accounts for sharing.

While this is a very polished 1.0 release, improvements can still be made. I would like to see iCloud or Dropbox sync to keep your data intact and accessible from multiple iPhones or iPod touches. Also, you can currently only have one photo per day. If you change the photo, the previous one will be lost. I would like to see the ability to add more than one photo per day, because this seems pretty limiting — at least with Day One, each photo can be a new entry.

Besides these minor flaws in the app, I found Gratitude 365 to be an alluring way to keep track of the things that matter in your life. Going back on what your grateful for is a great lifelong practice, and can definitely motivate you for the future. I, for one, will be keeping it around on my iPhone to make sure I don’t forget these small, but important, things that I would otherwise take for granted.