Developer: Orchestra Inc.
Price: FREE
Version: 0.9.5
App Reviewed on: iPhone 4i

Phone Integration Rating: ★★★★½
User Interface Rating: ★★★★½
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★★★½

Overall Rating: ★★★★½

I’m a working iPhone mom, so of course I have a calendar and task management app. On top of organizing my own life and my family’s, I recently got into the business of group blogging. My co-writers and I were looking for an easy way to create group to-dos and easily communicate about any task.

My partner discovered Orchestra To-do recently, and we no longer have two writers covering the same thing, nor a long list of unclaimed topics getting stale. And it cost of all of nothing to get organized using this simple, intuitive, group – and personal – to-do list manager.

Once downloaded users create groups, for example one for family, one for work, and one for personal use. Invitations to other members on a list can be sent in-app and once everyone has accepted and installed Orchestra the rest is almost magic.

At a tap, users can type or even speak to create a new task, assign it to a list and to a member of the group. They can also easily star the task if it is urgent, or swipe for three deadline options: today, soon and someday. There are filters to sort tasks and it’s easy to access any or all of the lists or add new ones. Users can even shake their iPhone to see only the tasks assigned to them.

The app will notify users internally of any updates to a project or send push notices when the app is not in use. Orchestra uses web synching to keep all users on all iPhones constantly updated and best, tasks can be created and messages replied to via email.

Members can also add avatars, create a profile, change backgrounds and set viewing preferences in the settings menu.

But, there are some oversights in this pre version 1.0 release – most importantly the ability to add specific due dates. Also, task deleting is not possible at present, nor can more than one person be assigned to each entry. There are no reminders and iPad integration would be nice.

But, Orchestra’s GUI is clean, the speed of internal chatting and updating is remarkable, and it’s nice to trust that our group can function without everyone being online or checking their emails at the same time. Best of all, I just enjoy being able to “assign” my husband the task of picking up the milk.

Posted in: iPhone Apps and Games, Productivity, Reviews

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