Have you ever wondered which is the best calendar app for iPhone? Calendar apps for iPhone are hard to recommend because different people use them in different ways. Some people are busier than others (when it comes to meetings) and others use their calendar as a task system (personally I question your sanity if you are that way). All of the major calendar apps I’ve tried are great but might not match the way you use a calendar app.
When using third-party iOS apps, it’s easy to try new ones as they request access to your calendar data using Apple’s APIs (so it works with Exchange, iCloud, Yahoo, AOL, and Outlook.com). This feature saves you from having to configure different applications individually. Instead, I’ll explain what I like about each of them and which I prefer.
What is the best calendar app for iPhone?
Apple’s Calendar app
There’s a lot to like about Apple’s default calendar app for iPhone.
It displays the date icon on the home screen (which no other app can do without using a notification badge). When I use this app, I stay in the “List View” to scroll through my upcoming events. I don’t have a lot of events on my calendar (I’ve tried to avoid meetings like the plague). But I like to take a look at my week to find out what I have to do. It is heavily integrated with the rest of the Apple platform.
Apple’s app does a lot of good things. It integrates all of your calendars into one app, provides up-to-date travel time information (extracting data from Apple Maps traffic data) and is easy to use. Where he could improve is in his “time to enter a date”. Although it added autocomplete, it should add better natural language input for quick typing. For many applications now, this is standard functionality. If you enter a lot of events on your iPhone, Apple’s calendar app will quickly become tedious.
When I asked people for their favorite calendar app recommendations, Fantastical was mentioned by many people. It is also with good reason. It has long been the gold standard for third-party calendar apps. It’s the pioneer of natural language input for calendar apps (unless I’m missing an app that did it so well in the first place).
Fantastical has a lot to do. It’s extremely quick to add new events using its natural language input (dinner with mom on Saturday at 7pm will add that). You can add your iOS reminders, use Google Maps as the default map app (when you tap on an address), and it has a beautiful design. Fantastical also has a great Today widget for quick access to your calendar.
Fantastical for iPhone is free on the App Store, and there is a free trial of Fantastical Premium to unlock many additional features like a Mac version, interesting calendar subscriptions, 10 day weather forecast (the free version includes three days), full task support for Todoist and Google Calendar, templates, and more.
If you have a busy schedule, Week Cal may be an app you’ll want to check out. It includes a number of different views (week, list, month, calendar, etc.). The weekly view is probably the most interesting. You can see your entire view from one screen. You can drag and drop events to new dates / times.
It lacks a natural language entry, but it does have a calendar store. The store is an exciting add-on. You can add things like weather forecasts, famous birthdays, sports calendars, and more to your list.
From a customization standpoint, it probably has the most important feature set. You can customize the icons it uses, the new default event layout, and the different colors.
If you have a lot events on your calendar, I strongly recommend that you check out Week Calendar. It’s a free download, and WeekCal Pro (widgets, smart calendars, built-in reminders, etc.) costs just $ 19.99 per year.
Calendars 5 comes from the folks at Readdle. They are the developers of some of the best iOS and macOS apps (Documents, PDF Expert, Spark, etc.).
Calendars 5 reminds me a lot of Fantastical. They share many similar features (natural language input, ability to use Google Maps, and integration with Apple reminders). It has a variety of views: List, Day, Week and Month. As I mentioned earlier, I probably prefer a list view, and Calendars 5 shows me the less amount of information compared to Apple or Fantastical app.
Overall, it’s a great app. It’s easy to create events, has multiple display options, offers plenty of customization, and more.
Calendars 5 costs $ 29.99 on the App Store.
You might be wondering why I am listing the Google Calendar app in a list of iPhone calendar apps. Well, it can show more than your google calendar. This is the default, but you can quickly add any calendar that you have already added to your iPhone.
Google Calendars on the Web has always been a first class service. The iPhone app is no different. It comes with natural language input, deep integration with your Gmail / G-Suite account, and some cool extra features (display a haircut theme if your date is a haircut, etc.).
There is nothing that I Do not like about the app, but something in the design doesn’t suit me. Functionally everything works, but it feels like the design doesn’t match the iPhone.
Google Calendar can be downloaded for free from the App Store.
BusyCal is probably best known for its long-standing macOS app. There is also a companion app for iPhone! It contains a view similar to other applications (list, month, week and day). You can create events using natural language. You can also add tags to events (this could be useful for project management).
Of all the apps I’ve tried, this is the one that most reminded me of Apple’s Calendar app. In fact, if it was called Calendars +, that would be an appropriate name. It includes a 10 day live weather view (useful for planning outdoor events). Like some of the other apps, it can also integrate with Apple’s Reminders app so that you can have both tasks and calendars in one app.
BusyCal for iPhone can be purchased from the App Store for $ 4.99.
Overall, I’m torn between two apps. I really like Apple’s default calendar app, but Fantastical fits my needs as well. If you like Apple’s app for specific features, you can probably stick with it. If you want something a little a little more, check out Fantastical. If you’re a regular at meetings, the weekly schedule is what I would recommend. In fact, I haven’t tried one that I couldn’t easily use on a daily basis. We are extremely fortunate to have so many great options.
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