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7 Tools For Writing On Your iPhone

7 Tools For Writing On Your iPhone

If you want to be able to do something that you love and also be able to do it well, you need to reduce the friction between thought and action. In other words, if you want to be a writer, you need to have the tools that facilitate writing at your disposal.

Now some will argue that you just need a plain ol’ text editor and the gumption to write every day to make your way as a writer, but finding a handful of tools that can help you along the way can’t hurt.

I write a lot on my iPhone. It seems strange to some people, but I have found that I can type super-fast on the touchscreen keyboard. And because of that I do a lot of outlining, writing, and editing on my iPhone. Below are 10 tools for writing on your iPhone.

    TextExpander Touch

    If you thought that text expansion on your desktop was cool, it makes typing on your mobile device a dream come true. If you don’t know, TextExpander Touch is an app that allows you to program short snippets of text as ways to expand to anything you want.

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    Say you want to program your address. You can make a snippet like “addr” expand to your entire address, even with line breaks. TextExpander can definitely help speed up your writing and it also works with around 50 other iOS apps.

      Elements

      This is a simple plain-text editor for iOS that syncs your text files to Dropbox. Elements has auto-saving, word-count, line-count, a scratchpad, TextExpander Touch support, ability to view, create, and edit Markdown files, and much more.

      This is an excellent app if you are a plain-text file nerd like me and has some great features that will keep you interested in using it.

        Notesy for Dropbox

        Yet another plain-text editor that syncs to Dropbox. Some of the extra things that I like about Notesy is that it has the option to preview Markdown files with your own custom CSS, enhanced search, subfolders, and option to view links, like phone numbers, pages, etc.

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        In general I like the overall look and feel of Notesy as well and feel that this is my favorite plain-text editor on the iPhone as of late.

          Nebulous Notes

          The last of the plain-text editors that I will mention today. Nebulous is nice for theming your writing with different fonts, font-color and backgrounds. Something that is unique to Nebulous is that it has a nifty “scrollable bar” on top of the standard keyboard that you can place different characters and macros on like tabs, asterisks, date functions, etc.

          If you want to type something up fast, coupling the programmable functions of Nebulous and coupling it with TextExpander is an awesome way to go.

            (CarbonFin) Outliner

            You’ve got to have a way to outline your ideas before you start writing and one of the easiest ways to do it on iPhone is with CarbonFin Outliner. Outliner gives you a nice interface to make parent and children items, search your entire outline, move items with drag and drop, gives notes to outline items, and much more.

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            Syncing is sort of a pain as you have to use CarbonFin’s website rather than a simpler Dropbox sync. But, for outlining on your iPhone there isn’t anything better.

              iThoughts

              What kind of writer would you be if you couldn’t carry around your mind maps with you at all times? iThoughts makes it easy to mind-map from you iPhone and has a pretty unique and intuitive interface. Adding items to your maps is easy and also adding children and siblings is as simple as double-tapping the return key or spacebar.

              iThoughts has a ton of features to it and really is a full-fledge mind-mapping suite.

                Day One

                Day One is a neat little “diary or logging application”. We spoke about the benefits of logging your day recently and this app can help you do it with ease. Day One is built to make logging super fast with a click of the “plus” button to add a new entry. I use it almost like my own private Twitter. Anything I am thinking internally I just jot it down.

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                Day One can be synced via Dropbox and it also has a nifty reminder system to help you remember to journal something. Oh, and of course to hide your dear diary entries Day One includes a passcode lock.

                Removing the friction of writing is extremely important if you want to get good at it. These seven apps are what I consider to be the “best of the best” when it comes to planning and writing on your iPhone. Let us know in the comments of any other apps that help you write while you are mobile.

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                40 Top Productivity Apps for iPhone (2018 Updated)

                40 Top Productivity Apps for iPhone (2018 Updated)

                Over the years here at Lifehack, we’ve discussed plenty of apps that you can use to improve your overall productivity.

                There are certain ones that many of our contributors and editors (past and present) have adopted over the long-term — there are always the stalwarts that stick around. But there are also new apps that crop up every day, adding more and more depth to the app category.

                Some of the apps are incredibly plain and simple, while others are more robust and offer more features than you can shake a stick at. And everyone has the one they prefer.

                It’s been our job (and still is our job) to keep abreast of all of the productivity-type apps out there. As a result — and as a bit of a refresher — we’ve put together a list of 40 best productivity apps for iPhone to provide you with an all-in-one resource for you.

                Productivity apps to help you get things done

                1. OmniFocus

                This app is, while pricey, considered to be one of the (if not the) most robust and full-featured productivity apps on the market.

                Download it here.

                  2. Forest

                  Train yourself to put your phone down and stay focused on the task at hand by playing with this planting game. It’s fun and will help you achieve more.

                  Download it here.

                    3. Things

                    Another robust choice, this app is a favorite amongst “productivityists”.[1]

                    Download it here.

                      4. 30/30

                      Recently covered here at Lifehack, 30/30 is a newcomer to the game that incorporates lists and timing of tasks into an elegant and easy-to-use interface.

                      Download it here.

                        5. Any.Do

                        A beautiful-looking app that is both easy on the eyes and your wallet.

                        Download it here.

                          6. PocketLife Calendar

                          This calendar app is specifically designed to be stylish and super easy-to-use. You can organize your life easily with different modern features.

                          Download it here.

                            7. Asana

                            We’ve covered Asana here at Lifehack, and it is being actively developed by a strong team committed to making collaborative task management a more efficient and effective experience.

                            Download it here.

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                              8. ToDoist

                              This app keeps track of everything – from simple errands to your most important projects – so you can get it all done and enjoy more peace of mind along the way.

                              Download it here.

                                9. FlowTasks

                                From the folks at MetaLab, Flow is a gorgeous collaborative task management app that is easy-to-use and incredibly functional.

                                Download it here.

                                  10. Calendars 5

                                  This calendar app focuses on events that help you to keep track of upcoming events and tasks easily. It has everything you need to organize, track and complete your to-dos.

                                  Download it here.

                                    11. Clear – Tasks, Reminders & To-Do Lists

                                    A fun and innovative list-making app that relies on swiping and pinching to make things happen. Clear created a lot of buzz when it launched, and might be the perfect to-do list gateway app for many.

                                    Download it here.

                                      12. Due

                                      A robust reminders app that lets you store and maintain reminders of all types. It’s replaced Reminders for me when it comes to the basics, and it’s worth a look if you want to keep the mundane stuff out of your head and cluttering your mind.

                                      Download it here.

                                        13. Checkmark 2

                                        I use this app for location-based reminders (such as groceries I need to get or single items I need to pick up from various locations). Checkmark is simple to use and a valuable addition to my productivity arsenal.

                                        Download it here.

                                          14. TeuxDeux

                                          Created by Tina Roth Eisenberg and Fictive Kin — Teux Deux is simple and incredibly stellar in terms of design. If you like lists (including the popular “Someday Bucket”) and want to associate dates with tasks, then Teux Deux will be right up your alley.

                                          Download it here.

                                            15. Wunderlist 

                                            Another incredibly popular choice is Wunderlist. Part of 6Wunderkinder’s software family, it sports a gorgeous design and is incredibly functional. We’ve talked about the app a couple of times here at Lifehack, so check those posts out here.

                                            Download it here.

                                              16. Nirvana

                                              For the GTD enthusiasts, there’s Nirvana. Straight from the source: “Nirvana frees your mind to focus on actually getting things done. If you’ve had enough of generic to-do lists, it’s time for Nirvana.”

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                                              Download it here.

                                                17. Priorities

                                                An elegant-looking task management app that has received decent reviews,[2] this could be the one for you if you’re not a fan of OmniFocus or Things — especially if you need (or want) to share tasks with others.

                                                Download it here.

                                                  Productivity apps that help you build habits

                                                  18. Productive

                                                  With this app, you can plan your habits with an easy-to-use interface, schedule habits for any time of the day, set smart reminders for each time of the day and stay on track with useful feedback. This app is perfect for anyone who wants to build a habit that sticks.

                                                  Download it here.

                                                    19. Habitica: Gamified Taskmanager

                                                    You can complete tasks and build habits in a more fun way with this app. Input your Habits, your Daily goals, and your To-Do list, and then create a custom avatar. Check off tasks to level up your avatar and unlock features such as armor, pets, skills, and even quests.

                                                    Download it here.

                                                      20. Streaks

                                                      This app follows the model of the popular “don’t break the chain method” in that you use the app to track how you are donig in the pursuit of your goal. Great for goal-setting — and an easy and elegant interface to boot.

                                                      Download it here.

                                                        21. Remember The Milk

                                                        Another popular to-do list app, Remember The Milk has a huge following. It has plenty to offer, including the ability to share tasks with others.

                                                        Download it here.

                                                          22. Day One Journal

                                                          When it comes to journaling, nothing really beats Day One. Its latest update added a slew of features that will make you want to start making journaling a habit.

                                                          Download it here.

                                                            Productivity apps that makes organization easy

                                                            23. Evernote

                                                            Touted as the world’s most widely-used productivity app, Evernote an be used simply as a notetaking app or can be customized to be your GTD app of choice — among other things.

                                                            Download it here.

                                                              24. Pocket

                                                              You can save an article, video or link you want to read or watch later to Pocket from anywhere including your computer, Safari, email, and your favorite apps like Facebook, Twitter, Flipboard, and Feedly.

                                                              Download it here.

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                                                                25. Sync.Me

                                                                This app identifies unknown phone calls, warns you from annoying spam calls, and adds a caller picture to your contacts from Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

                                                                Download it here.

                                                                  26. Droplr

                                                                  One of the most popular file-sharing apps out there today. Straight from the source: “Stay productive on the go. Droplr for iPhone keeps you in sync and makes sharing on the iPhone natural.”

                                                                  Download it here.

                                                                    27. Dropbox

                                                                    Before iCloud, there was Dropbox. And there still is Dropbox, which is still widely used by both Mac and PC users all over the globe. It’s like having a flash drive in your iPhone. A must-have.

                                                                    Download it here.

                                                                      28. iDolly 

                                                                      In conjunction with Dolly Drive and DollySync, iDolly allows you to edit and share your documents from your iPhone.

                                                                      Since all your changes sync automatically to all your devices, the current version of a document will always be accessible because Dolly Sync keeps everything in sync. Very handy.

                                                                      Download it here.

                                                                        29. Soulver

                                                                        It may seem odd that a calculator app shows up on this list, but this is no ordinary calendar app. Ben Brooks over at The Brooks review describes Soulver as follows: “It is what calculators would have been if they were invented at the same time computers were, instead of what we have with most calculator apps.” [3]

                                                                        Download it here.

                                                                          Productivity apps that help you work smart

                                                                          30. Captio

                                                                          A simple capture tool. Straight from the developers: “It’s simple. Open Captio and start typing. When you’re done, hit Send. The note is immediately delivered to your email inbox.”

                                                                          Download it here.

                                                                            31. Drafts

                                                                            A tremendous capture tool that allows for simple capture, followed by sending items to various applications such as OmniFocus, Things and more.

                                                                            Download it here.

                                                                              32. NoteShelf 2

                                                                              This is a perfect note-taking app for you. You can take beautiful handwritten notes, type, annotate PDFs, record audio & create lists. You can organize them into categories or groups.

                                                                              Download it here.

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                                                                                33. Doodle

                                                                                This app links directly with the Doodle service, which is one that allows you to plan and organize meetings far more efficiently and effectively. Lifehack contributor Steve Dotto has written about Doodle more in-depth here.

                                                                                Download it here.

                                                                                  34. TextExpander (Legacy)

                                                                                  I have saved countless hours of time with TextExpander, and despite its inability to be as robust on iOS as it is on the Mac, it is still a worthy app to have in your arsenal.

                                                                                  Download it here.

                                                                                    35. Launch Center Pro

                                                                                    A quick launcher for the iPhone that doesn’t just launch an app…with some of them it can do much more. This app saves you time by launching complex actions in a single tap.

                                                                                    Download it here.

                                                                                      36. GoodReader

                                                                                      This may seem to be an odd one to make this list, but here are plenty of reasons why it is here with this article.

                                                                                      Download it here.

                                                                                        37. LogMeIn

                                                                                        Want to be able to control your Mac from wherever you are? Then get this app.

                                                                                        Download it here.

                                                                                          Productivity apps that improve security

                                                                                          38. 1Password

                                                                                          There is simply no better password manager out there. I’ve even put together a 1Password Emergency Kit worth looking at here.

                                                                                          Download it here.

                                                                                            39. LastPass Password Manager

                                                                                            You can store passwords and logins, create online shopping profiles, generate strong passwords, track personal information in photo and audio notes.

                                                                                            All you have to do is remember your LastPass master password, and LastPass autofills web browser and app logins for you.

                                                                                            Download it here.

                                                                                              40. Truecallers

                                                                                              Identify and block spammers, search for unknown numbers and call friends easily with this app. With a community-based spam list from over 250 million users, you’ll need this app.

                                                                                              Download it here.

                                                                                                There are plenty of other options out there (and we’ve heard from readers in the past as to what they enjoyed using), but these 40 are among the best.

                                                                                                Reference

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