The 19 Productivity Apps That Will Optimize Your Life

Shave hours off your work day with a few clicks

February 19, 2019 9:00 am

To get your work done, Warren Buffett advises to guard your time fiercely and say no to pretty much everything.

But those of us with more precarious employment might need an alternative plan of attack.

Technology helps: like these 19 new productivity apps — most of ‘em free — that’ll keep you focused and productive with little effort.  

These apps will get you out of useless meetings, reorganize your cluttered inbox and even use your Netflix and web-browsing procrastination to teach you new skills.

If there’s one thing you won’t be wasting time on today, it’s this.


Consider: Working with your existing Gmail, this service reduces your email to three timed batches per day (except if something’s critical) and cleanly organizes ongoing conversations. (Web, iOS)

FYI: A one-stop search bar to find (and organize) documents across almost any desktop service or app (Slack, Dropbox, Asana, etc.).


Multicopy: Hate the singular nature of copy and paste? This clever extension lets you copy multiple text items and makes all of ‘em available to paste via a right-click menu. (Chrome, Firefox)

Papier: Every time you open a new tab, you can jot down whatever thoughts or notes you need and they’ll be automatically saved. (Chrome)

Qleary: Organize your favorite saved websites into boards and columns that’ll appear everytime you open a tab. (Chrome, Firefox, Opera)


Memento: Create multiple reminders with just a few taps and add location and time alerts, and keep track of all of them via a home-screen widget. (iOS)

Voicea: An AI that’ll capture highlights, schedule reminders and share recaps from your meetings. (iOS, Android)

Whipnote: Get automatic, searchable transcriptions (powered by AI) of your phone interviews and conference calls. (Web) The long-running AI-powered meeting scheduler has recently added a free Daily Meeting Prep email, Slack integration and a Chrome extension. (Web)


Clearminute: Privately track your online activities, receive weekly web-activity reports and block out time-sucking notifications, apps and websites. (Chrome, Safari)

Everyday: A colorful habit tracker that breaks down large goals into daily tasks and chains ‘em together — the idea is that the more days you don’t break the chain, the more likely you’ll finish the task. (Web, iOS, Android)

Gone: An ephemeral to-do list where all tasks disappear 24 hours after adding ‘em. (Web)

SaveMyTime 3.0: Did you know people unlock their phones about 120 times per day? Every time you do it now, this phone app will ask you what you’ve been doing and track your productivity for assigned activities. (Android)

Social Pomodoro: To work without distraction for 25 minutes at a time, this app pairs with you another like-minded and focused professional. (Web)

The ToDon’t List: Instead of writing what you should be doing, this emoji-powered app and extension focuses on everything you should be avoiding. (iOS, Chrome)

Tomato Helper: It’s the 25 minutes of work and five minutes of rest prescribed by the Pomodoro Technique, but available as a timer for Alexa products.


Eddy: This virtual travel assistant allows you to find great travel deals without leaving your preferred messaging app (Slack, Messenger, etc.).

Language Learning With Netflix: Since you’re procrastinating … This extension finds streaming movies with good-quality subtitles in the language you want to study, then allows you to you highlight and translate words as you watch. (Chrome)

Spark Now: Send your romantic partner reminders and tasks, then offer rewards for completion. There’s absolutely no way using this app will turn your great relationship into a passive-aggressive sh*tshow. (iOS, Android)

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