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Good-bye Trello, Hello Wunderlist

For quite a while now, my wife and I were using Trello to keep things organized. We both had our private lists and boards, and also a few shared boards for joint tasks. Over time we realized that this tool is more annoying than helpful, and we decided to try something else. After a lengthy discovery phase we settled with Wunderlist.

 

There are a few requirements we have for a to-do list tool:

  • Shared boards/lists
  • Managed using a Website, obviously
  • Android app, possibly iOS app
  • Proper notifications, as in configurable alarms and separate notification per task
  • Subtasks and checklists
  • Attachments
  • Option to assign a task to someone else
  • A bit more fancy and modern interface than Trello has


All in all not very advanced features, all basic stuff.

 

But what made us look for something new? Trello is nice in a way that you can organize your tasks very freely. On the other hand, it goes a long way to help you forget about important tasks.

  • The Android app has only one notification, for all tasks. If you open the notification, you need to work on all tasks - there is no way to work on one task and delay others. Can you work on several tasks at the same time? Possibly tasks you have to do the next day? Therefore you are going to miss tasks.
  • Notifications arrive 24 hours before the due date/time. Always. Not configurable. It’s not possible to receive a notification when you actually need to do something. Combine this with the fact that all notifications are aggregated into one … This made me miss tasks more than once!
  • If you are not subscribed to a list, you will not receive notifications. Which means, if someone missed to subscribe, or never came around to do it, she or he won’t be reminded of due tasks. In terms of collaboration, that is just a brain dead default setting.
  • Date handling in Trello is broken: if you create a ticket 2 years in the future, the next time you open a date field it is pre-populated with the same date far in the future.
  • Date format handling is broken as well: handling things like 12/24 hours depends on your language choice. If you - like me - prefer an English UI, you are stuck with stupid AM/PM settings, instead of getting a proper 24 hours clock.

As mentioned earlier, in the end we settled with Wunderlist. It’s not that Wunderlist is all shiny and good, it has some minor problems as well. But so far it suits our needs quite good.

  • If you complete a task in Wunderlist, the notification on other devices is not removed. That’s annoying, but well, can live with that.
  • Wunderlist allows moving tasks between lists by just moving them over to the new list - where in Trello it’s always a few additional clicks.
  • If you reboot the Android device, open notifications do not reappear.
  • You have to mute lists in order not to get notifications if a ticket is not assigned to you. That’s plenty of unnecessary notifications in the beginning, but it’s still better than the Trello default handling where you don’t get notifications at all.

Let’s see how Wunderlist will serve us in the future, and if their support acts better than the Trello support.

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