The 5 Best Time Management Apps in 2019

In today’s fast paced digital world where our attention span is shorter than a Goldfish, everyone is looking for ‘hacks’ to achieve a monk like focus.

And why shouldn’t they.

After all, a higher focus means high productivity, more work, less error and most importantly, more money.

But tell me honestly:

How happy you’d be if I tell you there our specific apps out there designed to help people like you and me increase focus and become more productive.

These tools are called ‘Time Management Apps.’

A time management app is basically a tool that tracks all your digital activities and gives a comprehensive picture of which task, website or app is taking the most amount of your time.

Now, there are dozens of tools out there that calls itself the best in the business. But which one should you go with?

I’ve done the heavy lifting for you and analyzed the 5 most popular time management softwares and the results were quite interesting.

And I’m sure, by the time you’ll finish this article, you’ll have a clear picture in your mind regarding which tool you want to go with.

So, let’s get straight into it.

THE TOP 3

1. FOCUSME

2. RESCUETIME

3. TOGGL

OVERALL

★★★★★

★★★★

★★★★

BEST FOR

All-Around

Auto-Tracking

Freelancers

TIME TRACKING

Both

Individual

Both

AUTOMATIC OR MANUAL

Both

Both

Both

SCHEDULING?

Yes

No

Yes

POMODORO SUPPORT

Yes

No

Yes

BLOCK WEBSITE?

Yes

Yes

No

DEVICE COMPATIBILITY

Mac, Windows, Android

Mac, Windows, Android and Linux

Mac, Windows, Linux, Android and iOS

PRICE

Starts from $2.50 per month

Starts from $9 per month or $72 per year

Starts from $9 per month

USABILITY

Very easy to use

Only the web app is easy to use

Very easy to use

RESPONSE TIME

24 to 30 Hours

Within 5 Hours

Around 36 Hours

Best Time Management Apps

The main goal of this review was to find a complete time management tool that not only tracks time and is easy to use but also gives you detailed reports about how much time you’re spending on each task, and lets you block distracting websites too.

One that you can use individually as well as in your business.

According to my test results and first-hand experience, I’ve ranked these apps in best to worst order.

So let’s see which one won the race and which one came last.

1. FocusMe

FocusME homepage

Started as a small HTML webpage named distractionblocker.com, FocusMe is the hands down most complete time management app out there.

In my test, it came out to be the only software that supports all the features I was looking for in a time management tool.

From time tracking to website blocking, scheduling to POMODORO support, it checks all the boxes.

And the best part?

It is the cheapest of them all. Costing you a little more than a couple of bucks every month. Pure value for money!

Now let’s take a look at its biggest plus points as well as the drawbacks (if it has any).

FocusMe Pros:

#1 Time Tracking with Detailed Report

The most essential function of any productivity tool is to track the total time spent on each website or app and show those numbers to the user. And FocusMe gets full marks in this section.

When you first log in to the app, it automatically starts its timer to note how much time you’re spending on each website and app in your computer.

And to get a better breakdown, click on the ‘website stat’ or ‘app stat’ option in the left panel.

FocusMe app stats

(It shows you how much time you spent on different apps)

FocusMe website stats

(It shows you how much time you spent on different websites)

#2 Website and App Blocking

FocusMe was one of the few tools in my test that allows users to block distracting websites and apps like social media, porn sites, news sites, games, etc.

To block a site or app, first, click on the ‘Add Plan’ option in the top right corner, give a name to your plan and click next. You’ll come across this slide.

FocusMe block sites

Click ‘Add’ and enter the URL of the site you want to block and then click ‘Next’ a few more times until you reach the 6th slide…

FocusMe block sites 2

…and finally click ‘Done’ to complete the website blocking process.

FocusMe website blocking

But maybe my favorite feature is the ability to block incoming emails on Gmail, while still being able to send them. Seriously. Check it out:

This will block Gmail if you try to open it, so incoming emails don’t knock you off track. But you can still create and send new messages if needed. Follow these detailed instructions here to set it up for Gmail and Outlook.

#3 POMODORO support

If you’ve done even a bit of research on productivity or how to stay productivity then I’m sure you must have come across the term POMODORO.

Again, FocusMe is one of a few tools that lets its users take full advantage of this super effective technique by providing a customizable timer.

FocusMe pomodoro

#4 Scheduling Tasks

Wouldn’t it be amazing if you can schedule different tasks in your time management tool and track how much time you’re spending on each one?

Well, it’s definitely possible if you are a FocusMe user.

Whenever you add a new plan in your dashboard, at the very end of the process it gives you the option of setting that plan for daily or weekly.

FocusMe scheduling 4

On top of that, if you choose daily, you can decide the starting and ending time of that task.

FocusMe scheduling 3

#5 Lowest Price

As I mentioned in the beginning, FocusMe comes with the lowest price tag.

By spending just $2.50/mo (billed $xx annually), you can get access to all its premium features. And the icing on the cake is, if you’re a student, you can get 30% discount on all its plans.

Not a student? No problem.

FocusMe offers a 15% for those who like their Facebook and Twitter page.

FocusMe

Now we have seen the shiny part, it’s time to see the other face of the coin. Let’s talk about the Cons of FocusMe.

FocusMe Cons:

#1 Works with only a few devices

The only minus point of FocusMe is, it’s compatibility with a limited number of devices.

While many of its competitors work with all the different operating systems and offer dedicated iOS and Android apps, FocusMe only offers a free Android app. And that too with limited features.

Moreover, it works only with Mac and Windows devices. So, no Linux and no iOS app. Sorry iPhone users!

Well, that’s the only concern I have with FocusMe. Otherwise, this software is a complete package.

FocusMe Plans

While FocusMe doesn’t have any free plans to offer, it lets the users try their premium plans for the first 15 days absolutely free.

And the best thing? They don’t ask for any card details.

Their paid plans start from as little as $2.50/month if you want to pay annually. And it comes with 30% discount for students and 15% discount for those who follow them on Twitter or like them on Facebook.

However, if you want to use this app in your business, you need to contact them for a custom price.

FocusMe pricing

Do I recommend FocusMe?

A big DAMN yes! Looking at the price point and the robust set of features it offers, I can easily say that it’s the best time management software I analyzed in my test.

So, if you’re looking for a complete time management tool, you can go with FocusMe without giving it a second thought.

2. RescueTime

Rescue Time Homepage

RescueTime is another great productivity tool that helps you track your time and gives a clear picture of how you spend your day in the digital world.

It basically “helps you understand your daily habits and become more productive”, according to their homepage.

In my test, I found that while RescueTime does an exceptional job in tracking time and sending reports, it lacks a few key features.

So, let’s find out what these features are and where RescueTime shines like a star.

RescueTime Pros:

#1 Brilliant time tracking and reporting

Time tracking is one of the most notable features of RescueTime. Though it only tracks time for individuals (no projects), it’s quite accurate.

Plus it refreshes its dashboard in every five to fifteen minutes, so you get real-time reporting on how you much time you’re spending on your phone or computer. And which websites and apps are eating most of your time.

Rescuetime dashboard
rescuetime dashboard 2

#2 Set Goals

The thing which I liked most about RescueTime is, it lets you set certain goals according to the level of productivity you’re aiming to achieve.

For example, let’s say you want to restrict your social media usage time to just 1 hour every day.

So all you need to do is go to “Reports”, select “Your Goals” and finally click on “create a new goals”.

rescuetime goals 2

This feature helps users know how they’re progressing towards their desired productivity goal. And this is a unique feature that ai couldn’t find in any other time tracking tool I tested.

#3 Website Blocking

RescueTime can do a big favor on you if you are someone who often gets distracted by social media or news sites while working on an important project.

You can easily block websites using RescueTime. But the only catch is, this is a premium feature. So, you’ll have to either upgrade your free plan or choose a premium plan during the sign-up process.

rescuetime site blocking

#4 Fast customer support

When it comes to serving their customers, RescueTime leaves no stone unturned. Their agents are always on their toes and I experienced their lightning fast speed first hand.

When I contacted the RescueTime support team to ask a couple of questions about their product, one of their agent, Bianca got back to me within 5 hours and gave a detailed explanation about their product’s feature.

RescueTime support

RescueTime Cons

#1 Not so User-friendly interface (Android app)

While downloading the app was a breeze (because of it small size), I found the interface to be quite confusing. When you open the app for the first time, this is the screen you see.

Screenshot 2019 01 26 21 37 28 05

There’s lots of things going on here like a total logged time, productivity pulse, a small timer icon in the bottom right corner but there are no clear instructions.

Even, the mobile app was unable to set any goal or activity whereas it’s fairly easy to do so in the Windows app.

So, overall it was a bad experience for me.

#2 No POMODORO support

While apps like FocusMe and Toggl come with POMODORO support, you won’t find this feature in RescueTime.

#3 No scheduling

Similar to POMODORO, I couldn’t see any option to schedule a task for a certain time period.

RescueTime Plans

RescueTime is one of the few tools that offers a free forever account to the users.

The RescueTime Lite plan comes with zero cost and limited features while the premium plan starts from $9/month if you want to pay monthly or $72 if you want to buy it for a whole year.

rescuetime pricing

Do I recommend RescueTime?

If you’re looking for a free app that enables you to track your time and also shows you how much time you’re spending on each website or app then definitely go with the RescueTime Lite plan.

Otherwise, I won’t recommend you to buy their premium plan. Because you can get a better deal if you spend your money on a tool like FocusMe.

3. Toggl

Toggl

Toggl is the easiest time tracking and productivity app with a clean, easy-to-navigate user interface.

In my test, I found that Toggl is not only an efficient time tracker but it’s also great for solo freelancers or someone with a small team.

However, while Toggl comes with many handy features like POMODORO and scheduling, there are a few key things you’re gonna miss in this app.

So, let’s find out all the goods and bads of this software.

Toggl Pros

#1 Easy-to-use interface

The very first thing I noticed when I signed up for Toggl is this clean home page with lots of white space.

And as you can see in the image below, it clearly shows you how you can get started tracking your activities.

Another great thing about Toggl is, you are not required to download any app on your computer or phone (though they offer dedicated apps), you can directly login to using the form on their website.

Toggl homepage

#2 Easy Scheduling

Scheduling a task in Toggl is just a matter of few clicks. And you can do in the home page without jumping to other options.

This feature is helpful when you need to track a particular task that you have planned to start on a particular day or time.

Toggl scheduling

All you need to do is, select the manual timer option by clicking on the three horizontal lines in the top right corner (as shown in image above).

Once you do that you can set time and date for a task according to your calendar or schedule.

#3 Great for Freelancers

As I mentioned earlier, I found Toggl to be great for freelancers or for someone who has a small team.

You can add clients by selecting the “clients” option from the left panel and add their name, project and other details in your dashboard.

Toggl add client

Similarly, if there are more than one people involved in a project, you can invite them by going to “Teams” (from the left panel), adding their email address and then clicking “Invite”.

Toggl Team invite

#4 Project Tracking

Toggl makes it easy for its users to track different projects. Want to know how much time you’re spending on each project?

It’s just a matter of few clicks. You can do that either by selecting the “Projects” option or going to “Reports”.

Toggl project tracking

#5 POMODORO support

If you’re like me then POMODORO technique is something that you apply on almost all your tasks.

And Toggl too knows the importance of this technique and offers it to its users even if you’re using the basic free plan.

Toggl Cons

#1 No website blocking

Blocking distracting websites is one of the best ways to increase focus and stay productive.

But unfortunately, this is the biggest drawbacks of Toggl. You can’t block any website or app.

#2 Slow Customer Support

The second thing that annoyed me the most about Toggl is it’s slow customer support.

I sent a support ticket on Friday but I’m yet to receive any reply from them.

#3 No detailed report

Even though Toggl does an exceptional job in tracking projects and gives you a precise breakdown of how you spend your time on different projects, it doesn’t show you which websites you visited or apps you used. Which is quite common among other time tracking tools.

Toggl Plans

Toggl offers 4 different plans to its users. If you’re looking for a free tool, you can choose their basic free plans.

Otherwise, the premium plans start from $9/month (billed annually) and each one comes with a 30 day free trial.

Toggl pricing

Do I recommend Toggl?

Yes. Especially, if you’re a freelancer and looking for a free tool that shows you how much time each project is taking then Toggl is the right tool for you.

4. Time Doctor

TimeDoctor homepage

If you’re a freelancer or a business owner who often hire freelancers and pay them on hourly basis, I’m sure you must have heard about Time Doctor at least once (or you might be using it on a regular basis).

Time Doctor is a popular tool among freelancers and business owners. But if you ask me, I had a very bad experience using this software. The user interface was terrible and it lacks many key features that keeps it away from becoming a complete time management tool.

Let’s get a little deeper and take a look at what the pros and cons are.

Time Doctor Pros

#1 Time tracking for individuals and teams

Even though it took me more than 5 minutes to figure out how to start tracking time on Time Doctor, it does a decent job in this section.

But the only catch is you will have to download either their phone or computer app. Otherwise, you won’t be able to track your activities using this software.

This is how time tracking looks in its Windows app.

Time Doctor app

Besides this, it’s also fairly easy to add team members if you’re working on a group project. And that too straight from your dashboard.

Just enter their email address and click “Invite.”

Time Doctor Team invite

#2 Compatible with most of the devices

If you’re someone who uses multiple devices to work and thinking whether Time Doctor will work on your device or not, then stop worrying about that.

Time Doctor is compatible with almost all the popular operating systems like Windows, Mac, Linux and also provides Android, iOS, and Chrome app.

#3 Exceptional customer support

I’ll have to agree (and you too) that when it comes to customer support, no one can beat Time Doctor.

They’re lightning fast when it comes to taking on customer queries. When I contacted their customer support to ask some questions about their product, one of their agent, Abdullah, reached out to me within 1 hour.

Yes, that’s right. In just an hour!

Time Doctor support

Time Doctor Cons

#1 Messy Dashboard

When it comes to usability, Time Doctor performed the worst. It was the most difficult to use app in the lot.

Time Doctor Dashboard

When you first log in to your account, the dashboard looks quite messy like this.

Lack of white space and clear instructions make the dashboard look cluttered. And because of it, it took me more than 10 minutes just to figure out where to start.

On top of that, when I created a project and clicked on the “Track some time” option, it refused to work. The only workaround was to download the Windows app.

So, if I need to download a 76 MB app just to perform the most basic of the functions then I would better switch to another tool than use Time Doctor.

#2 No website blocking

Sure, Time Doctor can give a detailed report of which website or app is eating the most amount of your time, but there’s no way you can block distracting websites or apps using this software.

#3 No POMODORO support

Similar to website blocking, there’s no function in Time Doctor that enables you to use your favorite POMODORO technique.

#4 Can’t schedule task

Again, you cannot schedule any task on Time Doctor. Just create projects and track time. No website blocking, no pomodoro, and no task scheduling.

Time Doctor Plans

Time Doctor offers only a single plan to the users. It starts from $9.99/mo per user with a 14 days free trial – no, they don’t ask for any card detail. So, feel free to take the trial if you want to make a bad day worse.

Time Doctor Pricing

Do I recommend Time Doctor?

In one word – NO. Time Doctor is the most complicated app I tested and looking at its high price and limited features, I would never recommend you to try this app.

However, if you’re a business owner and want to track how your employees are working on a particular project then you can give it a shot.

5. Timely

Timely is AI powered time tracking app that works more or less as a planner too.

Though it has a great interface and using this tool was a breeze, I couldn’t find many of the key features like website blocking, POMODORO etc. However, there were few things that impressed me a lot.

So if you’re curious to know where Timely hit and where it missed, take a look at the Pros and Cons of this software.

Timely app homepage

Timely Pros

#1 Clean user interface

Timely has a spanking clean interface with minimal options that even a novice can use. When you login to your account, you clearly know how to get started with this app.

All you need to do is, click on the tiny ‘+’ icons under different days/dates to create a task and start the timer.

Timely app interface

#2 Add team member

Another thing that impressed and at the same time surprised me the most about Timely is the option to add new users.

It’s great for those who mostly work in group projects and need to see how much time other members are spending on the project.

To make full use of this feature, go to “People” (from the left panel) and plug in the email address of the user you want to add before clicking on “+New User” in the top right corner.

Timely app invite feature 1

In the next window, fill in all the details and finally click “Invite person” in the top right corner.

Timely app invite feature

#3 Compatible with all popular devices

The third plus point of Timely app is it works with all the devices. Doesn’t matter if you use a Mac or Windows computer or an Android phone or iPhone.

It works smoothly on all the devices.

#4 Task Scheduling

As I said earlier, along with a time tracker, Timely also works more or less as a planner. You can schedule your activities ahead daily, weekly and even monthly.

You can do this by creating a task/plan under a given day (by clicking on the tiny ‘+’ icon) and allocate hours to that task by selecting the ‘Plans’ option. Once you do that you can enter the amount of time you think you would need to complete that task and then click ‘Save’.

Of course, it doesn’t let you plan tasks on certain times (like 1 ‘o’clock or 2:30 pm) but it’s still a good option to plan daily or weekly activities and monitor how your whole day or week goes by.

Timely planned timing

Timely Cons

#1 No website blocking

Just like Time Doctor, I couldn’t find any way to block websites or apps in Timely app.

#2 No POMODORO support

If you’re a POMODORO fan like me, then you better stay away from this app. No POMODORO support here.

#3 Slow customer support

While Timely was a very easy to use tool and I didn’t face any issues using it, when I used their live chat feature to ask a few questions, it took them about 36 hours to get back to me.

Timely app plans

Timely offers three different plans to the users – Solo, Essential, and Company. There are no free plans like you would find in RescueTime and Toggl.

Though it lets you try the premium plans for 14 days with no credit card required, the premium plans start from $7/month.

Timely app pricing

Do I recommend Timely app?

Yes & no. Yes, if you’re a freelancer who wants to track different projects as well as add multiple users for a group project.

No, if you’re ready to spend a few bucks but wants a complete time management tool with all the necessary features like website blocking, POMODORO support, detailed reporting, etc.

Conclusion

In today’s digital world where our attention span is less than a Goldfish and everyone is crazy about being ‘productive’, a time management tool is a must in your arsenal.

And if you’re looking for a tool that offers you all the required features in the lowest possible amount, go with FocusMe. It’s the best tool out there at the moment.

However, if you don’t want to spend a single penny but still want to track your time and stay productive, RescueTime or Toggl could be the best choice for you.

And finally, if you’re a freelancer who just wants to track your total time spent on each project, you can go with Time Doctor or Timely.

So that’s all from us. Now go out there and make the most out of every second of your day. I’m looking forward to read your blog post about ‘productivity hacks’ on BuzzFeed. 😜