Last Updated on January 14, 2020 by Bakari Chavanu
Though this year didn’t bring any new applications my way, there are several apps, upgrades and few services that help my productivity and make daily tasks a little easier.
Every year I look forward to looking backwards and choosing which apps, upgrades, and services that helped me the most. And most of all I like sharing my list with my readers. I do hope likewise that you will share in the comment section the apps and services you found useful this year.
Without further ado, let’s jump into it.
Spark Mail is at the top of the list for finally getting my email inbox under control. Since I started using Spark, I’ve opened Apple Mail exactly zero times.
Spark solves many problems for me, including the need to snooze emails have them appear in my inbox at a specified date and time, as well as make it fairly easy to save emails to my iCloud Mail folders. I also like their mail template and signatures features.
If you’re looking for a better mail client, you definitely should give Spark a try. It’s fully featured and for some reason it doesn’t require an annual subscription. Here’s my full review of Spark.
Timing App Tracker
Back in 2017, I wrote a review of the app tracking program, Timing (affiliate link), but after some time, and for some reason, I stopped using it until I realized how much I really needed it. I guess I have to learn things the hard way.
This year, Timing became the essential application for keeping track of my client related work, and it makes it super easy to compile, export, and share reports of my time and tasks for my clients.
When I first started using Timing, I would try to track everything I do on my Mac, but that was a waste of time. After I started using Timing again, I deleted unnecessary project folders, and then put a focus on keeping track of what I need to report.
I still also use Timing to track how long it takes me to complete certain projects and tasks like writing this article.
Timing is one of the few automation applications that works totally in the background while tracking the amount of time of every application, webpage, and document I use on my Mac. Tasks are automatically assigned to a specified project based on one or more rules previously set. To create a rule, all I have to do is drag a tracked task to a project while holding down the Option key. Just how simple is that? At the end of the day, or the next morning, it takes a less than a minute to manually assign unassigned tasks that are not already assigned to existing rule. [See my YouTube video review of Timing.]
I have several notebook apps on my iPhone and Mac, but Drafts Pro is the one I subscribe to. For months I resisted upgrading to the premium version of Drafts, but I found myself dumping so many notes in the app that I felt I needed its advanced features.
Drafts, which now includes a Mac version, contains workflows and automations that assist in inputting, managing, and sharing out notes. I also like its text reordering feature that allows for ordering lines or paragraphs of text. I don’t use this feature often, but it comes in handy when I need it.
Besides Drafts on my iPhone, the other useful app that I pay a modest premium for is Fulley. This automobile related app enables to log my maintenance services I get on my car, and reminders for future updates based on milage or date.
I also track my gas mileage, which doesn’t vary much, and store information about my vehicle. It’s apps like Fuelly that keep me from having to carry around a wallet, because I keep the information I need on my phone.
With this year’s upgrade, SuperTab now allows for splitting rows, triggering video capture, and even a stopwatch and countdown timer if you need it.
SuperTab contains dozens of features that take absolutely zero space on your desktop. The app remains hidden in the background until you need. It sort of like the macOS Dock but with lots more functionality.
BetterTouchTool 3.0 now includes a cleaner UI, but also allows for copying, searching, and disabling triggers. There’s triggers for those use Touch Bar on their MacBook, as well as MIDI and Siri Remote triggers.
The last of my notable upgrades for the year is the redesigned writing program, Scrivener 3.0. The update also included the long awaited iOS version of Scrivener, which makes it easy to sync documents between devices.
I use Scrivener for long documents and book projects because allows for organizing sections and chapters of writing projects into separate files listed in the sidebar. It’s so much easier to use than Microsoft Word or even Apple’s Pages, though Scrivener is not a graphic application, nor should it be.
Scrivener allows for exporting projects to various formats including Word, PDF, Kindle, and more. The upgrade includes dozens of other features that you should review if you’re interested in the program.
There are several notable mentions for my favorite applications and services this year. Those include, Keyboard Maestro 9.0, which got a redesign boost [full review], Duplicate Photos Fixer, and the premium version of YouTube.
I’m very interested in learning about your favorite apps and upgrades this year. Please write them in comment section below.
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