We all need motivation from time to time. Even when we are working hard to meet ends, knowing fully well that not finishing the task at hand can cost us dearly.
In the age of Internet, where both your work and leisure activities are done in front of a computer screen, distractions like Facebook or YouTube videos can easily eat into time that should really be spent working on important tasks.
This is where Pomodoro technique comes in. It can help you clear distractions and get things done. Here is how it works.
When you are working on a big project, break it down into smaller tasks at short intervals of about 25 minutes. Work on your task for 25 mins and once it’s done, take a short break of 5 mins and then repeat the same process 3-4 times. This 30-minute duration (25 min work and 5 min break) is called a session and after 4 such sessions, you should take a longer break of 15-20 minutes.
Best Pomodoro Apps for Android
There’s no shortage of Pomodoro timer apps on Google Play Store. But what if you need more than a simple Pomodoro app? For instance, you would like to set up different time blocks, say 35 or 45 mins, or want to track tasks, or even see how much time you’ve spent on each task etc. Well, that’s where we come in. We did the heavy lifting for you and hand-picked several Pomodoro Timer app, that might suit your need.
1. Pomicro Productivity Timer
Pomicro is the simplest form of Pomodoro timer app that you will find on the Play Store. Once you open the app, you will notice 4 big red buttons. 1st is Pomodoro which will begin your 25-minute work session. You can stop mid-way if the task at hand is completed before the timer ends. The other two buttons are for short and long breaks.
One downside to the app is that you will have to click the long and short break button manually every time. It is not automatic. Ideally, once you set a session, it should play in a loop for a fixed number of times that you decide. But on the brigter side, you can change the duration of Pomodoro session and assign a ringtone. There is also an option to keep the screen always on.
Price: Free (No-ads)
Verdict: Pomicro is a small little app that is completely free to use. It covers the basics but that is as far as it goes.
2. Scheduler: Productively Timer
While Pomicro is for users looking for a simple Pomodoro timer, Scheduler takes things further by offering the ability to create and save multiple Pomodoro sessions for different activities and tasks. This allows you to have more control over workflow and batch out the sessions for different projects.
To avoid confusion, you can color code different tasks based on the project it belongs to. You can also assign different notification sounds for different sessions and tasks. In the end, you can check the number of tasks and sessions that you have completed to draw meaningful conclusions.
Price: The free version comes ads-free but the paid version ($1.7) will give you widget options. You can now create one-click shortcuts for repeated and daily tasks. If you don’t want to pay for the widget, create a shortcut for the app on the home screen to launch it quickly.
Verdict: Scheduler is a great app which allows you to divide your tasks and break down your projects helping you be more effective and efficient.
Pomotodo is a hybrid app that takes two different concepts and mixes it up. Instead of relying solely on Pomodoro sessions to complete individual tasks, Pomotodo takes your to-do list and adds Pomodoro to it. I love this concept. Unlike the Scheduler, which is good for managing different projects, Pomotodo shines, when you are working on single big projects that have multiple sub-tasks in it.
To get started, open up the app and create a list of to-do tasks that you want to complete. The app allows nesting which means you can create sub-tasks within each task. This is good for breaking down large tasks or creating and managing small projects. For example, if you are studying for the physics exams, you can set Pomodoro timers for each chapter.
For each task, a Pomodoro session will begin, helping you to check off that list more effectively and easily. There are statistics to check your daily/weekly/monthly progress. What’s more? Pomotodo app can also block other apps (like SnapChat, gaming apps) from sending you notifications. It also supports tags.
Price: Pomotodo offers a 15-day free trial after which you will have to subscribe to a monthly plan ($4/month). Other features include more audio options, sub-tasks, and detailed day-wise reports.
Verdict: Pomodoto is a cool app that will definitely help you achieve more in less time, and increase your productivity from day 1. It is expensive though. I would have bought it for a one-off price.
4. Focus Timer Reborn
If you usually work on your computer and then get up and go walk for a while, then tracking breaks on the computer is useless. And that’s where Focus Timer Reborn comes in.
Like most Pomodoro app, you can change the session time. There are no ads even in the free version and all your data will be backed up to the cloud. All your progress and sessions can be seen graphically on the built-in calendar. The developer, Tomas Hubalek, has announced that he is working on adding themes to the app.
Price: The free version will get you the timer with session logs and stats but the data will be stored for 90 days only. The basic plan ($0.99) will remove ads and save data for 180 days.
Verdict: If you are looking for a Pomodoro timer, that sync between your computer and Android, this app is for you. I like the cloud backup option because it is all too easy to lose your progress in case of theft or damage. Plus, you can set goals which are cool.
Most of us are juggling more devices that we probably need. This is where cross-platform enabled app ClearFocus comes into the picture. Available for Android and iOS, it is a minimalist app with very few advanced features.
The objective is to simply punch the timer and start working on the task at hand instead of spending time planning and fidgeting around with the app. First time I launched the app, I was directly greeted by the timer screen, ready to begin my work.
Price: Clear Focus is free to use but the Pro version ($2.49) comes with widgets, pause button, and exportable stats. I was hoping they would offer an option to start work session on one platform and close it on another.
Verdict: The app is very minimalist and a joy to use. You can begin immediately even if you do not have the pro version.
Forest takes a unique approach in a sea of apps that have little to differentiate themselves. It is not exactly a Pomodoro app but can be easily used as one. You can set the timer to any length and schedule it to repeat.
Set the timer and plant a tree. As long as you don’t leave the app and concentrate on your work, the tree will grow, eventually blooming into a forest. If you leave, it withers away.
Price: The app is free to use, but with the pro version ($1) you can compete with other users, backup forests and work stats online and sync on other devices, and unlock more achievements. There is also an option to block/whitelist apps.
Verdict: Forest is a great app with a social message that actually helps you use the app more and work better. Most users end up downloading the app and using it a few times before moving on to other shiny toys. Plus, it comes with a bunch of advanced features in the pro version.
7. Pomodone App
What if you are working on your laptop/desktop, in your browser and need to manage your time and sessions from then and there? Pomodone is available on iOS and Android as well as on Windows and Linux platforms. There is also a Chrome browser extension.
Where Pomodone really shines is its ability to connect, via API, to a number of project management tools like Asana, Slack, Trello, Basecamp, and more. The list is pretty big. You can easily import your tasks and projects from these services and use this powerful little app to work hard and distraction free.
It comes with a lot of advanced features which is beyond the scope of this article because of its ability to connect with so many 3rd party apps.
Price: PomoDoneApp is free to use, the pro version starts at $14.5/year
Verdict: Pomodone is better suited for enterprise users who are working in a team-based environment and need to collaborate. Otherwise, it is an overkill for such a simple little concept.
Wrapping Up: Best Pomodoro Apps for Android
If you are just a beginner who is looking for a simple app based solution, try Pomicro. If you are looking for motivation, some advanced features, and cross-platform compatibility, I highly recommend Forest app. We at TechWiser use it. If you are looking for an enterprise solution, Pomodone is the best app out there hands down.
Let me what you think and which one are you using in the comments below.
Image credit: Marco Verch