Comparison Review: OmniFocus vs Things 3 – SaaS Battle Insights

Task management applications play a crucial role in helping individuals and teams stay organized and focused on their projects. Two popular and powerful applications in this domain are OmniFocus and Things 3. Both of these tools offer an extensive range of features to streamline task management, but choosing the right one for your needs can be challenging, as they cater to different user types and preferences.

OmniFocus is known for its advanced features and flexibility, which makes it suitable for users with a high number of projects or unusually complex tasks. It is especially effective for those following the Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology and looking for a robust system to handle their projects. On the other hand, Things 3 is praised for its clean, intuitive interface and simplified approach to task management. It appeals to users who prefer a more minimalistic design and a less cluttered workspace.

In this comparison review, we will examine the strengths and weaknesses of both OmniFocus and Things 3, delving into their features, customization options, pricing, and user experiences. By exploring these aspects, we aim to provide you with a clearer understanding of which application best suits your individual needs and preferences.

Make your choice

About OmniFocus

Screenshot of omnifocus website

OmniFocus is a powerful task management app designed for Apple devices including macOS and iOS. Developed by The Omni Group, this app is based on the popular Getting Things Done (GTD) method and is tailored for users who seek enhanced organization and productivity.

At its core, OmniFocus is built to handle projects and tasks efficiently. It offers a clean UI as well as a variety of features to help manage and categorize projects. The app organizes tasks into projects, contexts, and folders. Projects can be set as sequential, parallel, or single-action, allowing users to prioritize their work according to their specific needs. Contexts are used to define the relevant place, resources, or situation required to perform a task, while folders are utilized for organizing projects.

One notable feature of OmniFocus is custom perspectives. This function enables users to create personalized views of their tasks – filtering them according to tags, deadlines, or projects, and providing a focused overview of their workload. Additionally, the app offers a today view for quick access to current tasks, ensuring all critical items are addressed in a timely manner.

The app also boasts impressive calendar integration; by syncing with a user’s active calendar, OmniFocus provides an organized, consolidated view for easy planning and tracking. This feature, coupled with the app’s excellent support for deadlines, enables users to stay on top of important tasks without losing sight of their priorities.

OmniFocus 3 has introduced enhanced contexts called tags. Users can now assign multiple tags to a single task, providing greater flexibility and organization. This update has also introduced more intuitive customization options for the app’s interface, which is especially beneficial for iOS users.

Despite being exclusive to Apple devices, OmniFocus offers a web-based version for subscribers, increasing its accessibility and usability for those with multiple devices or operating systems. However, it’s important to note that this app is not truly cross-platform, as it lacks dedicated apps for Windows and Android.

While OmniFocus provides many robust features and customization options, it may come across as overwhelming for some users. A pro version is available, offering advanced features such as custom perspectives and the ability to create recurring projects – ideal for power users who require a comprehensive task management solution.

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About Things 3

Screenshot of things 3 website

Things 3 is a task management app developed by Cultured Code, designed for iPhone, iPad, and macOS users. The app is known for its beautiful design, intuitive interface, and robust feature set. If you seek a task manager that is easy to learn and focuses on usability, Things 3 may be the choice for you.

One of the most significant advantages of Things 3 is its adherence to the Getting Things Done (GTD) method. This productivity system, developed by David Allen, is all about organizing tasks, categories, and deadlines to effectively manage your personal and business objectives. With Things 3, you can easily create to-do lists, add tags, and set deadlines to streamline your work and improve your overall organization.

Things 3’s design helps users stay on top of their tasks and priorities through its Today View and Upcoming View. The Today View presents all tasks due for the day, while the Upcoming View gives you a glance at future tasks and deadlines. If you are familiar with GTD, you may also appreciate the app’s Next Action feature, which narrows your focus to the next task that requires your attention.

A drawback of Things 3 is its compatibility only with Apple devices, making it inaccessible for Windows, Android, and cross-platform users. Furthermore, its pricing model might be deemed expensive compared to competitors such as Todoist, a popular cross-platform task management app by Doist.

However, Things 3’s ease of use, simplicity, and minimal learning curve make it appealing for those who want a straightforward approach to managing tasks and resources. Compared to other task managers like OmniFocus and Todoist, Things 3 excels in its user-friendly design, training, and overall user experience.

In conclusion, Things 3 is a reliable choice for iPhone, iPad, and macOS users seeking a user-friendly, well-designed task management app. Its solid feature set, GTD compatibility, and visually appealing interface make it an appealing option for those in both personal and professional settings.

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Round 1: Best UX

Round 1

When comparing OmniFocus and Things 3, one of the main aspects to consider is how user-friendly and visually appealing their interfaces are. In this round, we’ll look into the user experience (UX) offered by these two task management tools, keeping aspects like UI, art, usability, beauty, ease of use, and simplicity in mind.

OmniFocus takes on a more traditional approach with its interface design, offering comprehensive project organization and customizable perspectives. Despite having a wealth of features, the UI might come across as slightly overwhelming for some users, especially those new to task management apps. However, this complexity also allows for the fine-tuning of projects and workflows, making it appealing to power users who require a more robust system.

On the other hand, Things 3 sports a more modern and minimalist design that takes a more visually appealing approach. Its beautiful graphics and smooth animations enhance the user experience, making it a pleasure to interact with. The app is known for its simplicity and ease of use, making it more accessible to a wider range of users. This, in turn, reduces the barriers to entry, ensuring that even individuals with little to no experience with task management apps can easily adapt and achieve productivity using Things 3.

It’s worth noting that both apps provide a solid level of usability, allowing effortless navigation and the ability to view and manage tasks through various perspectives. OmniFocus, with its advanced customization options, offers users more flexibility in personalizing their experience. Meanwhile, Things 3 excels in delivering an elegant and straightforward user experience, which is perfect for those who prefer a clean and clutter-free environment for managing tasks.

In summary, the choice between OmniFocus and Things 3 when it comes to UX depends on individual preferences and needs. OmniFocus appeals to users who seek comprehensive control over their workflows, while Things 3 caters to those who prefer a sleek and user-friendly application with a focus on aesthetics and ease of use.

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Round 2: Features Comparison

Round 2

When it comes to features, both OmniFocus and Things 3 stand out as robust task management apps catering to various user preferences.

OmniFocus is well-known for its integration with the Getting Things Done (GTD) method. Users can organize their tasks into projects and contexts, making it easier to set priorities and maintain focus. Contexts allow assigning tasks based on specific conditions like time or location, and custom perspectives enable users to create personalized views of their tasks. Furthermore, OmniFocus boasts sophisticated calendaring and organizational tools, including the unique Forecast perspective, which provides a visual representation of upcoming deadlines and events.

On the other hand, Things 3 also supports GTD principles but opts for a more lightweight approach. Instead of contexts, it uses tags to categorize tasks and projects. Additionally, the app’s minimalistic interface is designed to maintain easy navigation and productivity. It includes the Today View, which simplifies prioritizing, and an intuitive built-in Calendar for managing deadlines. In terms of organizing, Things 3 lets users create categories (similar to folders in OmniFocus) and offers support for sequential projects, thus helping plan the order of tasks while working effectively.

Cross-platform compatibility is a significant factor to consider when comparing features. While OmniFocus focuses primarily on macOS and iOS environments and offers seamless integration with Apple devices, Things 3 is available for multiple platforms, including macOS, iOS, and even Windows through third-party apps like ToDoist. This diversity provides more flexibility for users who utilize various devices for their task management needs.

Both apps cater to users seeking customization options. OmniFocus indeed offers more advanced features, including advanced custom perspectives and greater control over project types (sequential, parallel, or single-action). Things 3, however, provides a balance between simplicity, flexibility, and power in functionality. Its introduction of tags makes for a more customizable experience without overwhelming the users.

In summary, OmniFocus and Things 3 come with their unique sets of features catering to different user preferences. OmniFocus offers more advanced customization and organization tools, while Things 3 takes a more straightforward and minimalistic approach suitable for users who prefer simplicity and clarity. The choice ultimately depends on individual needs and preferences in a task management app.

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Round 3: Price

Round 3

When it comes to pricing, both OmniFocus and Things 3 offer different packages to cater to the varying needs of their users. It’s essential to understand the cost structure of each app before deciding which one suits your budget and requirements the most.

OmniFocus utilizes a subscription-based pricing model, with three tiers available: Free, Pro, and Team. The Free tier has limited functionality and serves as an excellent starting point for those looking to explore the app’s capabilities. The Pro subscription, priced at $9.99/month or $99.99/year, unlocks the full range of features, making it suitable for power-users and professionals. Lastly, the Team subscription is targeted at collaborating teams, with pricing dependant on the number of team members.

OmniFocus pricing details

Things 3, on the other hand, adopts a one-time purchase pricing model for each platform it supports. For Mac users, Things 3 costs $49.99, while the iOS version is available for $19.99 (iPad) and $9.99 (iPhone). Although the upfront costs might seem pricey, these one-time purchases grant you access to the app’s full suite of features without any recurring payments. It’s worth noting that there’s no built-in collaboration functionality in Things 3, so the pricing structure mainly targets individual users.

Things 3 pricing details

In summary, when comparing the price of OmniFocus and Things 3, it’s crucial to consider your individual needs and preferences. If you require more advanced features or team collaboration, OmniFocus’s subscription plans might be a better fit. However, if you’re an individual user who prefers a clear interface without ongoing costs, Things 3’s one-time purchase model could be more attractive.

Make your choice

Battle Decision: Things 3 Winner

Battle Decision

When it comes to task management, Things 3 stands out with its simpler, cleaner, and more visually appealing user interface. Its ease of use and intuitive design make it a popular choice for users who don’t need the extensive features and complexity offered by OmniFocus.

Things 3’s visually calming environment contributes to a “mind like water” feeling, enabling users to focus on their tasks without distraction. The clever use of space, icons, and typography enhance the overall usability of the software, allowing for better organization, planning, and execution of tasks.

The software strikes an impressive balance between simplicity and power. Despite having an array of complex features, Things 3 manages to keep its interface clutter-free and easy to navigate. This clear and user-friendly design has won the hearts of many users who value the combination of simplicity and functionality.

Another strong point for Things 3 is its seamless integration with macOS and iOS devices, making it an ideal choice for Apple users. This allows for a consistent experience across platforms, ensuring a smooth workflow and improving overall productivity.

In conclusion, Things 3 emerges as the winner in this SaaS battle due to its visually appealing interface, ease of use, effective balance between simplicity and power, and seamless integration with Apple devices. While OmniFocus may be more suitable for power users with numerous complex projects, Things 3 delivers a more accessible and enjoyable user experience for most people. Its design and functionality align perfectly with the needs of users seeking a stress-free and efficient task management solution.

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