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It’s been four years since Microsoft scooped up Wunderlist, the popular cross-platform to-do app. Although that software has thus far received a stay of execution and remains available, the introduction of Microsoft To-Do two years later with no native Mac app in sight had many longtime users adding “Find a new to-do app” as a new task.
For those who made do with just iOS and web apps over the last couple years, Microsoft To-Do has finally arrived in the Mac App Store. Overall, the free app is a faithful port from Windows, although those who prefer the dark theme found in that edition will be disappointed to find it missing here, nor does the Mac version currently support Mojave’s built-in dark mode.
Made for Mac
Those familiar with Microsoft To-Do know what to expect, but Wunderlist users will also feel right at home. Current day tasks are presented front and center in the My Day view, with smart lists for Important (starred) and Planned (due date) tasks, which can be disabled or auto-hidden when empty via preferences. Outlook users have the option of displaying flagged emails as well, with a unified Tasks view and custom user lists occupying the rest of the sidebar at left.
To-Do for Mac includes the same handful of color themes and scenes available on other platforms, which can be assigned to individual lists. Although a more bountiful palette would be welcome, the included scenes provide enough variety for all but those with a huge volume of to-do lists.
Making the list
Microsoft To-Do may be chock full of the stuff that made Wunderlist a cross-platform darling, but the Mac app hasn’t achieved feature parity quite yet. For example, there’s currently no way to duplicate a list, nor print or export data from this version. Wunderlist users can import data via the web app, but it took several tries before we were successful at doing so with our very sparse account.
On the plus side, sync was blazingly fast. Adding new tasks to the My Day view in the Mac app updated immediately in the web app (and vice versa), with only a brief delay on our iPhone X. Version 1.61 also now syncs Microsoft Planner tasks, which was missing from previous Mac releases. Speaking of integration, clicking Open in Outlook from flagged emails unfortunately launches the web app, rather than the native Mac application.
There are a couple nice shortcuts baked into Microsoft To-Do. Although the UI is already quite compact, Command-2 reduces the window to a “minified” view sans sidebar, while Command-1 restores everything to normal. Those who frequently use tags will love the pop-up menu as you type hashtags, allowing one-click entry of previous tags, or to view every task with that tag applied across all lists.
Despite the lack of dark mode support and the fact that Microsoft To-Do may not be a feature-by-feature replacement for Wunderlist just yet, the long-awaited Mac debut checks off the most important features on our wish list.