It’d be hard to be a fan of web apps and not have heard of Wunderlist. The nearly ubiquitous to-do list app has gone from a fresh contender at its launch in late 2010 to one of the most well-known to-do list apps on the planet. It’s free, fun to use with customizable backgrounds, and has web, desktop, and mobile apps that all work exactly the same. In fact, we used to use it internally at AppStorm before switching to the new Basecamp. It works great, and looks nice: a rather killer combo.
And now, it’s better than ever. Wunderlist 2 already improved the service, but it’s lately gotten a ton of extra goodness, along with paid Pro accounts that add unlimited subtasks, task delegation, and of all things, extra backgrounds. The first two make it a serious contender for professional task management, while the latter keeps Wunderlist’s fun attitude front and center.
Simple Task Management, Grown Up
Back in the beginning, Wunderlist was intended to be a free, basic, stop-gap app while the 6Wunderkinder team worked on Wunderkit, their professional app aimed to change the way we work on tasks, notes, and more. Wunderkit was finally launched early last year, though it never got the traction Wunderlist had, and the team was streatched trying to keep both apps going.
So they refocused on their first baby — Wunderlist — working to make it better without veering away from its original simplicity. They’ve solidly achieved that, making Wunderlist just as easy to get started with as it was on day-1, but adding features to keep the most demanding users happy.
It’s obvious the Wunderlist team still takes pride in making Wunderlist the prettiest way to keep up with your tasks. The current interface is more polished than ever, with subtle textures and a nice blend of skeuomorphic and flat design that makes it feel perfectly modern. Even if you don’t like skeuomorphism, you can pick on of the plainer texture backgrounds instead of an image, and you’ll still likely be wowed at the many tiny UI touches in Wunderlist that simply make it look nice.
And the best thing is, it’s the exact same everywhere: on their blazing-fast web app, or in their Mac, iOS, Windows, and Android apps (the latter two are waiting on an update for the latest features, though).
The Features for the Pros
Then, as mentioned before, Wunderlist is more feature packed than ever. It’s still built around simple lists and tasks, like you’d expect, with none of the extra complexity Wunderkit imagined. But, it has bits of Wunderkit poking through, with notes and subtasks on tasks that look similar to their originals in Wunderkit. There’s the power-user features that were requested back in our original review, such as scheduled and repeating tasks, and even an option to remind you about a task before its due, similar to a start date in tools such as OmniFocus. All of this is free: the only limit is that you can only add up to 25 subtasks on a task, and you don’t get the 8 newest background images.
Beyond that, there’s sharing built-in for free just like it’s always been. Anyone can share a list with anyone else via email or Facebook, and the lists (including tasks, subtasks, and notes) are kept synced automatically between everyone on a list. Now, though, you can also delegate tasks with a Pro account. You’ll first need to share your list of tasks with the people you want to work with, and then you can assign tasks to individuals from the task options, or right in-line as you’re adding a new task.
Assigned tasks worked great in our tests, nearly instantly popping up as notifications in the assignee’s Wunderlist or email inbox. You’ll get a notification when changes are made to the tasks you’ve assigned to others, and can collaborate with them on the task with subtasks and more. Best of all, all tasks that have been assigned to you will show up in an Assigned Tasks smart list to make them easy to find.
Only the person assigning tasks needs a Pro account; the person the task is assigned to could have a free account or a pro account. Then, Wunderlist plans to add file uploads to tasks soon as another pro feature. So for all of this — assigning tasks, unlimited subtasks, 8 new backgrounds, and the upcoming file upload option — you’ll only need to pay $4.99/month. Not too bad to support an app that’s kept you productive this long, and seems to be a great option going forward.
Wunderlist 2 is impressive on its own, and with the new Pro plans, there’s finally a definite business plan in action that should make anyone relying on Wunderlist feel more comfortable about its future. Wunderlist now makes more sense than ever for anyone managing a team, as your team members can use Wunderlist for free or with pro accounts on their own for their own tasks, and you can still easily assign them tasks from your own pro account. It keeps everything together, in the to-do list your team members are most likely to already be using.
Christian Reber, Wunderlist’s founder and CEO, wants Wunderlist to be to tasks what Evernote is to notes and Dropbox is to files. If they keep doing as good as they have lately, the Wunderlist team definitely has that potential. It’ll be exciting to watch Wunderlist continue to grow while remaining the simplest way to keep up with your tasks on any platform.
The todo list that works on practically every platform — with a brilliant web app and sync — now goes pro, with options to delegate tasks, add unlimited subtasks, and get extra background images. File sharing will be coming soon, as well.9