Best Business Use of iPad – iPad GTD

Getting Things Done iPad – GTD

The Amazing iPad

There is a little bit of a cult around the writings of a namesake of mine, David Allen. The bloke is well known enough that often, when I’m talking to people and they find out my name they ask if I am the ‘real’ David Allen. Of course the only answer to that is “yes I am the real David Allen.”, although perhaps not the David Allen that they were thinking of. The chap that they are thinking about, has written a series of books about Getting Things Done, and the Art of Stress Free Productivity. As yet, I have not read any of the books, as published by my namesake and I don’t really have any plans to either. I think I am more or less organised enough – Well sometimes I am, anyway. Let’s have a look at some GTD applications now.

Using the iPad for Getting Things Done Organising

Using the iPad for GTD is a good idea, because of the portability of the Apple tablet and there are a number of applications, that are available to use with the workflow as suggested by Getting Things Done. I have tried out a couple of these applications, you have Things, Wunderlist, iProcrastinate, Remember the Milk, Toodledo, ToDo and OmniFocus, and more, some of these are basic list type applications and some are more full blown, organisational tools. This activity is typical of iPad business uses and the getting things done set of applications will be in the list of most used best business apps for iPad.

Why iProcrastinate is Not The Favourite iPad GTD App Now

iProcrastinate has been, probably my favourite of these for a while and is one that I have been using on my Mac and have recently downloaded to have on my iPhone also. Unfortunately iProcrastinate is not an iPad application. Although, you can use the application in the two times mode or even have it only filling a small part of the iPad screen. Neither of which is really satisfactory. On the other hand I have another application called Wunderlist for iPad which also has a sister application for use on the Mac, it is a pretty good tool.

Best Business Use of iPad

So although I have preferred using iProcrastinate on the Mac, I think the fact that it is an iPhone app, and not a proper iPad application, rules it out for use for iPad GTD, as far as I am concerned.

Wunderlist, which I have just had another look at, is actually, quite a nice looking application. The interface on the iPad, is very similar to the interface on the Mac, so once you have learned how to use the application in one device, it will be easy for you to use elsewhere. There is a web service available, so that you can look at your tasks, even if you are are at a different computer. Where ever you are accessing your task lists, you can easily see the tasks that are due for today, tomorrow, the next seven days, later or those without a date.

Another important thing if you’re using an GTD application, that has information that needs to be synchronised, is that you need to know the synchronisation is going to work well. For good iPad GTD and efficiency, you need to know that when you login to your account, you will see all of your tasks that are in the queue to be done. With Wunderlist you put in your login details, as you used, either on the website or in the app on the Mac and the synchronisation feature brings in all of your to do items.

Using Wunderlist for iPad Getting Things Done

Best Business Use of iPad

It is easy to click on the input area, at the top of the screen in the gtd iPad application to add a new task. The keyboard pops up and you just start typing the name of your new task. You can click on a button to put a star on the task which gives its extra priority. When you tap on the task after it has been entered, then you will see a dialogue box which allows you to add a note, set the due date, set a reminder and choose which task list it should be in.

When you click on the due date, you will see a standard iOS entry system for setting a date. It is that type of roller data entry that allows you to choose the day, the month, and the year. You click on done and then click away from the dialogue and that is all you need to do to set up your task. Are you getting into GTD, the best business use of iPad.

In the top right-hand corner of the screen there are three buttons, the first one allows you to share the list, the second one, allows you to edit your list of tasks. Basically all that allows you to do is to delete tasks from the list. The third button is a plus sign which you tap, if you want to add a new task. In the left portion of the screen there is the list, of the task lists that you have set up. One will be called inbox and then the rest will be as you have named them. At the top of this section there are three buttons, the first one is for settings, the second, is to edit the list, and the third is a plus symbol, use that one if you want to add a new list.

The very top left-hand corner there is a synchronise button which will send your task lists to the server. At the bottom of that left-hand side, there are buttons for showing all tasks. You have those that are starred for priority, the tasks for today, tasks for tomorrow, overdue tasks and a more filter. So that you can look at tasks that have been done, tasks for the next 7 days, later and those tasks with no due date.

The way that Wunderlist works is actually quite simple, and this is a good thing, because you don’t want the application getting in the way of what you want to do. Get in there and do some iPad GTD, get things done, and get out again, efficiency is the name of the game.

When you make a new task, it is automatically synchronised to the server, you don’t have to press the button to send it to the server, it will get new tasks that have been entered elsewhere in the gtd iPad appat the same time also.

Wunderlist for GTD on the Mac

Wunderlist Mac

The Wunderlist application on the Mac, lets you to change the background, to alter the look of the app. The standard background is a nice pine effect, which is lovely if you like wood. There are nine different backgrounds you can choose from. Also it is possible to hide the list of task lists, so that you can see more of the tasks that you have created already.

Sharing Task lists in Wunderlist

A sharing option available in the Mac application gives you the ability to share your tasks, it can publish them to cloud app. The application asks you if you are sure that you want to publish your tasks, and if you say yes your list is uploaded, and a secret URL is generated. If you are working in a group or you have a list that needs to be available to all members of a group of people, then this sharing ability could be useful for you. Depending on the content of the list, it may be that some people will not be comfortable with sharing information within their list of tasks, in the cloud, so just be aware of the privacy issue.

Using Wunderlist with Email

Whether you are working on your iPad or your Mac, you have the option of sending the list out as an e-mail. It is a simple way of sharing your task list. Another thing that you can do with e-mail is to create a task by sending an e-mail to and it actually works. I tried it out and I found that the subject line becomes the list of tasks and the first line of the message becomes the name of the task. I did have another line of text later in the e-mail that didn’t come through at all, and there were no settings for due dates.

Omnifocus for iPad GTD

OmniFocus for iPad

Omnifocus could be the best GTD software application for use on the iPad for getting things done, as it is recommended by the David Allen get things done Corporation. They do also recommend using pen on paper too. The big problem with using Omnifocus, whether it be for the Mac or for the iPad, is the price. Omnifocus for iPad might have in-depth task management functionality, same as you would get from a desktop application, but also combined with the mobility that you get with the tablet computer, but it does cost £28. Whereas Things for iPad costs just £14. Wunderlist on the other hand is free, and free is always good. Then the other consideration is that you probably have a laptop or desktop computer too and would like to have the app on that too. Now you have to factor in the cost of buying two applications to do your iPad GTD, one for the iPad and one for the desktop.

Conclusion for iPad GTD Options

If money is no object then you might just lay out the cash and get the Omnifocus for the Mac and the iPad. If you want to have some Get Things Done software that has fewer features but extremely cost effective then look at some of the other options. Try out some of the free ones first and then look at others when you have seen what your workflow is like and know which features and benefits you are prepared to pay for.It is possible to do GTD free with Wunderlist. GTD is a best use of iPad, productivity being very important for so many things.

Get the ideas out of your head and into a list that you can manage. Have the app open daily and if not set yourself alarms to remind you to review your tasks and get them finished off and done. There are not too many things as satisfying as seeing a list of tasks getting shorter and your iPad GTD apps can help you get there.

You can do iPad GTD with ThinkBook, an innovative note taking iPad app. Evernote is another note taking type app that could be used for task management also. In fact there is a plethora of applications that you can have a rummage around in to find the one that suits you best.

Article about iPad GTD and the various apps to use for it on the iPad for business use – Done and ticked off as done in Wunderlist, excellent GTD software for iPad.

The Amazing iPad

4 thoughts on “Best Business Use of iPad – iPad GTD

  1. Chris Lee says:


    Nice summary article. I am getting ready to try out Wunderlist myself. I have been using TaskTaskHD now for sometime and am getting a little tired the layout…I have tons of tasks which results in the list being really long and a bit unwieldy; maybe Wunderlist does a better job at list organization. I am hoping to do a full review of Wunderlist along with TaskTaskHD and Toodledo and post my blog in the same vein as my note taking series.

    In the meantime, I appreciated your comments out on the iPad for Productivity group on LinkedIn. Thanks for joining and reading my blog.

    BTW, I would appreciate any and all suggestions you would have for a blogging newby like me.

    – Chris

  2. David,

    Solid summary in your article. Have you looked at “Evernote” as an addition to Wunderlist?

    Bill Herrick
    Current President and Founder of The Mac Group Dayton Ohio

  3. David,

    Nevermind. I just noticed your mention of Evernote in the last paragraph.

    Bill Herrick
    Current President and Founder of The Mac Group Dayton Ohio

  4. Jolie says:

    For iPad GTD I use smarttm app to which I switched some time ago. This is really great tool for all those who’re looking for really intuitive and smart way of task management. Especially the best is that app uses Evernote so all tasks are autoamtically synced between these two apps and I connected my iCal and Google calendar to the app so all my privet and work tasks are under control. Also weekly review of the tasks is great.

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