With so many productivity apps around, time management should be easy. But the reality can be very different, as key areas of your life – email, calendar, lists – are often split across several tools.
Handle is a free Chrome extension and iOS app which takes a different approach, combining gMail, to-dos and your calendar in a single view.
By default Handle stays out of your way, and you can browse the web or check your inbox as normal.
If an important email arrives, pressing t turns it into a to-do. There are options to add reminders, text notes and set a due date, although you can ignore any or all of those if you like, or postpone them until later, and just click “Save”.
Clicking the Handle icon on the toolbar displays Handle’s sidebar, where you’re able to view your to-dos, calendar or other items.
It looks basic, but the sidebar gives you various ways to quickly manage your tasks. You can drag and drop something to prioritise it, for instance. And there’s no need to navigate a complex dialog to set a basic reminder: just hover your mouse over a task, and click the “Remind me today” icon.
If that’s not enough, you can also take Handle full-screen, sort and filter your to-dos in various ways, create new ones or browse your calendar.
There’s also the ability to create and manage a “Project”, essentially a folder for grouping to-dos. But even this is a little smarter than you might expect, because if you enter a time in the project title – “at 5pm”, “tomorrow”, “next week” – then Handle will automatically set a reminder for every to-do saved there.
Handle is already a useful app with plenty of time-saving touches, and if the developer’s promised improvements arrive – an Android app, more email accounts supported, better search tools – then the future’s looking bright. Check it out.