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Wunderlist 3 for iOS and OS X shines at delegation

Jeffery Battersby | Oct. 8, 2014
Detail-view clunkiness aside, Wunderlist is one of the best, simplest tools for team collaboration.

The detail view not only lets you set due dates and reminders, but it's also where you collaborate and communicate with others, add images and other documents, and create notes. You communicate within a task by using a small chat field, and anyone associated with the task is notified and can respond to the conversation. Unless you've turned these notifications off--which you can only do if you aren't the person responsible for the task--you receive updates anytime anyone updates a to-do item you're associated with. This simple communication feature makes it easy for groups of users to stay on top of every Wunderlist task.

While I love the detail view, it's also one of my biggest gripes about the Mac app. It's great that each item can include so much detail, but merely selecting an item doesn't reveal that information. You need to double-click to reveal the details in a third column. Even worse, clicking in an empty space outside a to-do item rehides that detail view. A feature like this makes perfect sense on smaller devices where screen space is at a premium, but on a Mac and even an iPad, there should be a preference option that automatically opens the detail view any time you select an item.

For iOS
Thanks to a recent update, Wunderlist's universal iOS app has Dropbox integration, a feature currently unavailable with any of the desktop applications. The iPad app bears a striking resemblance to Wunderlist for Mac, with a small status bar at the top providing up-to-the-second information on all your tasks. Unlike the Mac app, a single tap on any to-do item slides the item's details into view, and you just swipe it away to the right to remove it.  

I found the iPhone version of to be the most elegant of the lot. The app opens to your list view, and you tap to drill down: tapping an item in your task list takes you to do the to-do list, and tapping a to-do reveals the detail view for that task. Once again, the devil (and the power!) is in the details view. It's here that you can add notes and files, and communicate with others.

For the Web
The Web version of Wunderlist behaves just like the desktop version, with one notable exception: You'll need to use the Control key rather than the Command key if you like to use keyboard shortcuts. Otherwise, it is an exact replica of the Mac version, right down to the double-click required to reveal a to-do item's detail view.

Bottom line
Detail-view clunkiness aside, Wunderlist is one of the best, simplest tools for team collaboration I've ever used. While it lacks the location-aware, context-specific sophistication of OmniFocus, its simplicity lends itself to easy adoption by everyone on your team. The option to assign tasks to specific people and monitor all parts of your team's projects makes Wunderlist arguably the best group task management app there is.


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