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Top 10 Must-Have Apps for Mobile Productivity

Top 10 Must-Have Apps for Mobile Productivity

by Charles Henderson

In today’s fast-paced world, productivity apps for mobile devices are becoming indispensable tools for getting things done on the go. With smartphones and tablets now ubiquitous, mobile apps that help us stay organized, focused, and efficient are essential for maintaining high productivity in our daily lives.

Whether you want to better manage your time, collaborate with team members on projects, take notes spontaneously, or track habits, there are excellent apps purpose-built for each of these functions. Choosing the right apps that sync with your unique needs and workflow style is key to enhancing your productivity.

In this comprehensive guide, we will review the top 10 must-have apps across key mobile productivity categories that every professional should consider using.

The potential of mobile devices for productivity today is immense – but only if you have the right apps. The top apps in each category offer powerful features and seamless user experiences that can help you achieve peak productivity whether you are at home, at the office, or on the go.

With robust apps for task management, calendar organization, note-taking, team collaboration, time tracking, and habit building, you can manage your professional and personal tasks and projects with greater effectiveness no matter where you are.

By allowing you to sync data across devices, set reminders, share files, track time, and more, the top mobile productivity apps provide that extra structure, drive, and organization to accomplish more each day. Let’s examine the 10 essential mobile apps you need to boost your productivity.

To-Do List Apps

To-do list apps are the backbone of productivity. By providing an easy way to capture all your tasks in one place and prioritize them, a solid to-do list app keeps you focused on the right activities.

1. Todoist

With its intuitive interface, natural language parsing, and host of features for organizing projects and goals, Todoist is a top choice for robust task management on the go.

Key Features:

  • Add tasks via natural language and set due dates.
  • Organize tasks in projects and sections.
  • Enable features like reminders, comments, filters.
  • Collaborate with teams.
  • Integrates with Google Calendar, Alexa, Slack, etc.
  • Apps for all devices.

Pricing: Free plan available. Premium plans start from $3/month.

2. Any.do

A user-friendly interface and smart features for easy list creation make Any.do ideal for simple task tracking.

Key Features:

  • Create tasks, notes, and lists via voice dictation.
  • Set reminders based on time or location.
  • Share lists and collaborate with others.
  • Integrates with Alexa, Slack, Google Calendar, etc.
  • Apps for iOS and Android devices.

Pricing: Free version available. Premium plan costs $2.09/month.

3. Microsoft To Do

For those already using Microsoft’s ecosystem, Microsoft To Do seamlessly combines task list creation with Outlook calendar and email.

Key Features:

  • Quickly jot down tasks and set reminders.
  • Organize personal and shared task lists.
  • Integrates tightly with Outlook’s email and calendar.
  • Share lists easily with team members.
  • Apps for iOS, Android, Windows.

Pricing: Free

Calendar Apps

Without a good calendar app, you’ll easily miss appointments and deadlines. The top mobile calendar apps allow you to smoothly manage your schedule and life’s events from your phone.

4. Google Calendar

The intelligent features and seamless integration with other Google apps make Google Calendar one of the best calendar apps.

Key Features:

  • Create/manage multiple calendars and events.
  • Uses AI to help automatically add events.
  • Get schedule suggestions and reminders.
  • Integrates with Gmail, Google Drive, Google Tasks etc.
  • Apps for iOS, Android, web.

Pricing: Free

5. Apple Calendar

Those immersed in the Apple ecosystem will find Apple Calendar the ideal way to manage events and schedules.

Key Features:

  • Beautifully designed for iOS interface.
  • Create/edit/organize events and reminders.
  • Syncs automatically with iCloud.
  • Integrates with Siri, Maps, and Contacts.
  • Share calendars easily with others.

Pricing: Free for Apple device owners.

6. Outlook Calendar

Beyond just email, Outlook Calendar helps you effortlessly manage every aspect of your schedule.

Key Features:

  • Schedule appointments, events, and meetings.
  • Set reminders and notifications.
  • View shared calendars from Outlook groups.
  • Integrates closely with Outlook email and contacts.
  • Apps for iOS, Android, and web.

Pricing: Included with free Outlook account.

Note-Taking Apps

Note-taking apps are essential for jotting down thoughts and ideas as they arise throughout the day. Top note-taking apps make it easy to capture notes and find them when you need them.

7. Evernote

The long-standing app for taking notes on the go, Evernote helps you organize all your notes and media in one place.

Key Features:

  • Take notes via formats like text, photos, audio, sketches.
  • Organize notes with tags and notebooks.
  • Powerful search to instantly find notes.
  • Share notes and collaborate on them with others.
  • Apps for all devices.

Pricing: Free version available. Paid plans from $4.99/month.

8. OneNote

Part of Microsoft Office suite, OneNote offers seamless integration of notes with Outlook, Word, Excel etc.

Key Features:

  • Type, write, record notes, and clip webpages.
  • Insert images, audio, video, docs into notes.
  • Organize notes into customizable notebooks.
  • Share notebooks for real-time collaboration.
  • Apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and web.

Pricing: Free to use for Microsoft 365 subscribers.

9. Bear

With beautiful UI, tagging system, and writing-focused features, Bear makes note-taking on Apple devices fast and fluid.

Key Features:

  • Clean and intuitive design.
  • Hashtag support for easy tagging.
  • Format notes with checkboxes, indentation, highlights.
  • Syncs notes across Apple devices via iCloud.
  • Export notes to multiple formats.

Pricing: Free version available. Premium subscription is $1.49/month.

Task Management & Collaboration Apps

For team productivity and project coordination, task management and collaboration apps allow for seamless tracking of shared tasks and deliverables.

10. Asana

Enabling real-time communication and easy project oversight, Asana is a top choice for team collaboration.

Key Features:

  • Create projects and tasks with descriptions, due dates.
  • Assign tasks to team members.
  • Comment and communicate within tasks.
  • Set reminders and notifications for due dates.
  • Integrate with key tools like Slack, Dropbox, Google Drive.
  • Apps for all devices.

Pricing: Free for up to 15 team members. Paid plans start at $10.99 per user/month.

11. Trello

With its simple kanban-style boards for tasks, Trello provides an intuitive platform for teamwork and task management.

Key Features:

  • Organize projects into boards with lists and cards.
  • Attach files, images, checklists to cards.
  • Comment on cards for discussions.
  • Set due dates for each card.
  • Integrates with useful third-party apps via Power-Ups.
  • Apps available for all devices.

Pricing: Free version available. Paid plans start at $9.99/month.

12. Slack

The leading team communication app, Slack can be very effective for collaboration when integrated with a task management system.

Key Features:

  • Instant messaging and channels for topics.
  • Integrate useful apps via Slack Apps Directory.
  • Enable notifications and reminders.
  • Search tools to find messages and files.
  • Apps for all devices, including desktop.

Pricing: Free version available. Standard plan is $8/month per active user.

Focus and Time-Tracking Apps

To eliminate distractions, avoid procrastination, and understand exactly how your time is being spent, focus and time-tracking apps are invaluable.

13. Forest

Using fun gamification, Forest helps you stay focused by letting you grow a virtual tree which dies if you leave the app.

Key Features:

  • Set a timer to stay focused on your current task.
  • Add friends and grow a forest together.
  • Your tree dies if you switch away from the app before timer ends.
  • View detailed statistics on your focus time.
  • Apps for most devices.

14. Toggl

With robust time-tracking features across devices, Toggl provides useful analytics on how you use your time.

Key Features:

  • Time tracking with running stopwatch timer.
  • Tag time entries and add notes.
  • Generate reports to understand time spent on tasks.
  • Integrate time entries with popular project management tools.
  • Apps available across all devices.

Pricing: Free version available. Pro plan starts at $10/month.

15. RescueTime

Helping uncover your daily habits and productive times of day, RescueTime tracks app and web usage automatically.

Key Features:

  • Auto tracks time spent on apps, websites and documents.
  • Weekly Reports on time usage and productivity.
  • Set goals and limits for distracting websites and apps.
  • Schedule focus time on important tasks.
  • Available as web browser extension and mobile app.

Pricing: Lite version is free. Premium plans start from $6/month.

Personal Efficiency Apps

Rounding out your mobile productivity toolkit are personal efficiency apps for building habits, setting goals, and driving self-development.

16. Habitica

Gamifying habit formation with RPG elements, Habitica helps you level up good habits with its fun, engaging interface.

Key Features:

  • Build habits into your quest by setting up daily tasks.
  • Earn rewards and items as you complete tasks and build habits.
  • Create your custom avatar and play with friends.
  • Apps available for iOS, Android, web.

Pricing: Free to use with option of one-time purchase for more features.

17. Strides

Simple and intuitive habit tracking with useful analytics makes Strides a great fit for anyone looking to build better habits.

Key Features:

  • Easily create habits you want to build.
  • Check off habits daily to track streaks.
  • Review handy reports and stats on progress.
  • Reminders and notifications encourage consistency.
  • Apps for iOS and Apple Watch.

Pricing: Free basic version. Premium version $4.99/month.

18. Fabulous

Using science-based techniques and motivation, Fabulous helps you build healthy daily routines step-by-step into habits.

Key Features:

  • Choose growth habits personalized to your goals.
  • Uses cognitive behavioral psychology methods.
  • Starts with small steps and builds slowly into habits.
  • Reminders and tracking keep you motivated.
  • Available as iOS and Android app.

Pricing: Free version available. Premium plan starts at $4.99/month.


Harnessing the power of mobile to achieve greater productivity, efficiency and focus is vital in today’s world. With an arsenal of specialized apps for task management, scheduling, note-taking, team collaboration, time tracking, and habit building, you can significantly enhance your performance and reach new levels of productivity.

The key is to assess your needs and working style, then determine which apps best fit your daily workflows and processes. Optimizing which apps you use for core productivity functions can help build an interconnected system that keeps you organized and empowered to perform at your peak each day.

Give these top-rated mobile productivity apps a try to streamline your work, build effective habits, and fully leverage the convenience of always having your desk at hand.

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