It has been a good year for to-do apps on iOS. While Clear made a splash almost a year ago with its strikingly clean design, Finish hopes to wow users with a rather unique take on the actual functionality of a to-do app. While most apps simply present a list of tasks that have yet to be completed, sometimes ordered in terms of importance, Finish takes it a step further and uses the time-frame that the task must be completed by to further separate - and, in some cases, highlight – the task list.
In my initial testing of the app (currently at version 1.0, and only available on the iPhone and iPod touch), I’ve been impressed by the speed. The app is fast, and while it is certainly more feature-rich – and therefore, complex – than Clear, it still manages to be simple. While Clear, up until now my to-do app of choice, completely leaves out the concept of “due dates,” Finish embraces it. The app’s support for short term, mid term, and long term tasks is really its claim to fame. This easily allows the user to distinguish between what is due today, and what is due next week.
This break-down is incredibly useful. More than that, it’s a clever way to differentiate itself from the competition. The design of Finish is also something worth noting: purple, purple everywhere. That’s certainly not a strike against the program; purple is just a color that isn’t often seen on iOS, so again the developers have found a way to make the app feel more distinguished.
Beyond the color choice, the design isn’t as groundbreaking as some of its competition. Finish feels like an iOS app in that it makes use of standard controls and buttons, and the navigation is fairly routine. The largest difference is in the use of sliding panels to reveal more tasks in a certain time frame. Tapping the “Finish” logo at the top will also reveal completed tasks, and swiping left on tasks will reveal more options (such as mark as complete, edit, delete). There are, however, fun sounds and design quirks that make the app feel unique and fun to use.
Compared to my previous de facto to-do app, Finish feels slightly heavier. However, that isn’t necessarily bad: the time frame feature alone makes it worth it. So while Clear may be superior for those who literally just need to keep a list of tasks, Finish is the superior choice for anyone who needs to complete something on a certain timeframe. With that in mind, Finish has earned a place on my homescreen – a place that used to belong to Clear.
Finish is available in the App Store for $0.99.