Shopping List App – Reminders or Anylist?

It’s a really good and geeky thing to use your mobile computers for your shopping list. It is much more useful though than writing lists of what you need to get on pieces of paper. What I needed was a shopping list app.

Reminders as a shopping list app

I have been using the application Reminders and lately, it’s been annoying me just a little bit. I leave completed items on the list so I can choose them again. This saves me from retyping the shopping list each time I do it. The trouble is, the list is not in alphabetical order. It can be difficult to scroll through and find just the item I want. I have on many occasions retyped something in that is already on the list just because I didn’t see it was there.

Reminders vs AnyList

I was going to need a new application to use for the shopping list. After searching through the App Store the app which kept coming to the top of the list was Anylist.

The next thing to do was to get the list I had in reminders into Anylist the shopping list app. It’s not possible to export out of reminders on iOS but it is possible to delete from the Mac version of the application. I did the export and the file came out in the ICS format. When I looked into the file using a text editor it was full of extra rubbish I didn’t need.

Shopping list app

I like the idea of using automation which is what computers are excellent at, to get the file sorted out. First of all, I used Keyboard Maestro to create a macro which from a given starting point selected lines of text, deleted the text, moved the cursor down two lines, selected another few lines of text and deleted those too. All I needed to do then was to use a find and replace to get rid of some extraneous text on the same line as the item of the list. Then I was finished with the job. (The macro did one item at a time so I had to press the Keyboard shortcut for each item.)

shopping list app

Easier with Editorial and TextTool on iOS

Even though it wasn’t possible to get the text exported out of Reminders on iOS I wanted to find out if it was possible to do the job I did with keyboard Maestro on the Mac, on iOS. I was pleased to find out that using a macro in Editorial did a quicker and easier job of getting rid of the lines I didn’t want. Then I used an application called TextTool to do the find and replace. I have since found workflow available in Editorial to do the find and replace.

Keeping the Lines with the text I wanted

Find and replace in Editorial

Using Editorial Workflows

Find and Replace in TextTool

I was delighted to find in the shopping list app Anylist there is a way to import a list of items into your shopping list. This is available in the iOS version of Anylist. Once the list is available in the application you can then start to categorise items such as produce, dairy, bakery et cetera. I can also add information such as the price of the item and assign the item to one or more shops.

Using AnyList shopping list app

When I’m going out shopping I can quickly set up a filter when I’m in a specific shop to show items for that shop. It’s also good to see the items separated out into categories making it easier to find items on the list in various parts of the supermarket. If I have the prices set up I can see prices from other shops. I can also have a running total of how much is being spent in the store as I cross things off when I put them into the shopping basket. Anylist is a cool shopping list app and much better than using Reminders.

Adding to the shopping list from Favourites

Using the Anylist shopping list app