August 1, 2012
Dear Reminders, Hello new friend, nice to meet you. I’ll be honest, I haven’t actually used you too often to set up my reminders on my iPhone or iPad. Still, once you arrived on the Mac with OS X Mountain Lion, I thought I’d give you a try. Unfortunately, that probably wasn't the right thing to do on my part. As I usually do with these types of letters, I’ll start with the good. I’m very impressed with your minimalist design. Apple attempted to create a simple to-do app, and they succeeded. In particular, I like your black-on-white color scheme, which is easy on the eyes in both daylight and at night. And big kudos go to Apple for fully integrating you with both iOS and OS X. As far as I can see, iCloud updates each task as changes are made. So much so, that I've never been late for an appointment! Now for my complaints. For one, why no love for the drag and drop technology in iOS? That would allow me to organize reminders more easily. In other words, even the most important reminders sit at the end of my list if they were added last. As Twitter users would say, #RemindersFail. I’m also underwhelmed by your alert system. When an alert pops up, I’m given two choices: Close and View in iOS, and Close and Snooze in OS X. If I’m there to respond to the reminder, why can’t I select a third choice, say Completed? Wouldn’t that make the process of checking off tasks much easier? Also, I find that moving items from one list to another is a difficult process. Because you don’t use drag and drop in iOS, I must go into the details page of each event to change the list it belongs to. Call me quirky, but why do you make this so difficult? Finally, and this is a huge dealbreaker for me, but why can’t I add attachments to reminders? For example, I’d like to add items to my work list, in particular, including maps, links, and emails. While I understand Apple is trying to keep you as uncluttered as possible, adding attachment capabilities shouldn't be asking too much. And don't tell me this isn't possible, as Apple is adding this feature to Calendar in iOS 6. I’m sorry to say this, but even with OS X integration, you're nowhere close to being perfect. Because of that, I hope Apple goes back to the drawing board. If you get more features, certainly let me know. Sincerely, P.S. I've recently wrote to Calendar, Mail, and Notification Center too, so don't think that I'm picking on just you. What other ways could Apple improve their native Reminders app? Which to-do app do you use on your iPhone/iPod touch and iPad? Dear X is a new column featured on AppAdvice.com. Do you have any gripes, suggestions, or concerns about certain apps or iDevices that you want us to highlight? Please email: [email protected] or contact me via Twitter.