How many times do you realize that the day flies by, but you can’t be as productive as you wanted?
Yeah, I totally understand – that struggle is all too real.
If you are also in this situation, then you should try time boxing apps, to regain control of your time and maximize your productivity.
In this blog post, you will find my personal selection of these tools to take advantage of this powerful time management technique.
I have personally tested them so that you don’t have to waste time doing it and can start reaping the benefits of time boxing right away!
- Timeboxing apps divide your day into chunks and count down time as you work, like ticking boxes off a list.
- Features vary from smart calendars to automatic rescheduling, focus modes, and syncing with other tools.
- Costs range from free trials to monthly or annual fees depending on the app features you want.
- Some apps are better for personal use while others are great for teams wanting to boost productivity together.
- Apps like Sunsama, Motion, and Akiflow offer advanced planning features, while Freedom helps block distractions.
What are timeboxing apps?
Timeboxing apps are like helpful pals keeping you on track.
Basically, it’s a tool based on the timeboxing technique, which is a way to manage and organize your tasks, dedicating a certain amount of time to a specific activity.
Imagine having a smart assistant who nudges you, saying, “OK, you can only spend 30 minutes on emails today.”
That’s what these apps do.
They help you divide your day into chunks of time – a box for each task.
You get to decide how many minutes or hours go into each box.
In fact, most of these time-blocking apps have timers that count down while you work.
It feels like playing a game where you race against the clock to beat your own score, or in this case, finish your tasks before the buzzer!
They also remind you when it’s time to stop and take a break or move on to something else.
Be careful, as timeboxing is a time management technique very different from time blocking, although they are often confused.
Suggest reading: Time blocking vs Time Boxing
Top 7 Timeboxing Apps for 2024
- Sunsama: best overall
- Motion: best ai-calendar app for time boxing
- Akiflow: most straightforward to use
- Freedom: perfect time boxing apps for block digital distractions
If you are looking for an app that is simple to use but allows you to make the most of the benefits of time boxing, Sunsama is the right choice for you.
Thanks to its intuitive interface and management features, it’s one of my favorite ones, prioritizing specific tasks based on your needs.
This way, you can create a realistic and balanced work schedule, increasing productivity and focus.
Sunsama is really like having a personal assistant who knows your schedule inside out.
- A simple interface very easy to navigate, especially for beginners
- You can set reminders for upcoming events
- Drag and drop functionalities for a much easier use
- Lots of integrations with other project management tools and Calendar apps
Pros and Cons
Sunsama offers two subscription plans:
- Monthly plan at $20 per month
- Annual plan at $16 per month
It also offers a 14-day free trial without the need to enter your credit card.
That’s true, Sunsama doesn’t have a free plan, but for its value for money, it’s definitely one of the best timeboxing apps.
If Sunsama is an app to increase personal productivity, Motion AI is instead a time boxing app that is positioned as a project manager with more advanced features, task scheduling, and team collaboration capabilities.
It’s one the best apps when it comes to timeboxing, thanks to its intelligent use of artificial intelligence, which makes it a unique tool.
- AI-Powered Planning: The app uses artificial intelligence to place tasks into your calendar. It finds the best times for you to work on things based on how busy you are.
- Automatic Rescheduling: If something comes up, no worries! Motion automatically shuffles your tasks to new time slots, so you’re always on track.
- Color Coding:you can color-code different types of tasks and events. This makes your schedule easy to read at a glance.
- Meetings Assistant: Scheduling meetings can be a pain, but not with Motion. Its Meetings Assistant helps set them up without back-and-forth emails.
- Work Across Devices: Whether on iOS or Android, or even sitting at your desktop – it’s all synced up.
Pros and Cons
Motion also only has paid plans, but offers a 7-day free trial.
Then, you can choose between these two subscription plans:
- Individual Plan: $19 billed yearly or $34 billed yearly
- Team Plan: $12 per user a month, billed annually or $20 per user billed monthly
The free trial requires you to enter your credit card, but you will be able to familiarize yourself with all the task management features which make Motion AI an extremely unique and versatile app.
Not a big fan of overly complex screens and looking for something more minimalistic?
Then Akiflow is the timeboxing app best suited to your needs, showing only the essential information you need to maximize your productivity, like your calendar and to-do list.
Like other apps, you can easily drag and drop tasks and integrate Akiflow with other tools like Asana, Google Calendar, Gmail, and Slack.
- Minimalistic design, reducing distractions and overwhelming
- Timeboxing and Time blocking features: Akiflow is also one of the best time block apps on the market, thanks to its unique features
- Works with Other Tools: Akiflow plays nice with other apps, making it super easy to sync all your stuff.
Pros and Cons
Akiflow also offers a subscription and pricing system very similar to Sunsama and Motion.
In particular, you can choose between:
- Yearly Plan: $19 dollars per month
- Monthly Plan: $36 dollars per month
As you can see, Akiflow’s prices are decidedly higher than its competitors, especially when choosing a monthly subscription.
This is definitely the sore point of this timeboxing app, despite it offering a 7-day free trial.
But how much can saving time actually cost you?
If Akiflow is actually the most suitable app for you, then the price takes second place, as time is priceless!
With Freedom, we’re not talking about planners, calendar based tools, or to-do list apps.
It is, in fact, a very simple tool, which has the goal of blocking all distractions and dedicating you with maximum focus for a specific period of time to a certain task.
It is very useful if you work with your PC and telephone and tend to get distracted with various social media, shopping sites such as Amazon or Youtube.
This way, you’re limiting the amount of time you spend on these websites, especially when you’re working or you need to focus at 100%
I’ve been using Freedom for my daily planning and it really helps me focus.
This app knocks out distractions so I can get things done.
Here’s what makes it stand out:
- Block Websites: You can tell the app to keep you away from time-wasting sites when you need to focus, the best option for deep work
- Schedule Focus Time: Set up times in advance for no distractions. Your future self will thank you.
- Recurring Time Boxes: If you have a routine, Freedom lets you schedule those focus sessions ahead of time, on repeat.
- User-Friendly Interface: The design is clean and simple. You won’t waste time figuring out how to use the app—it’s that easy.
- Lists of Distractions: The app knows all the main online distractions and can block them with just a click.
- Free Trial Available: Not sure if it’s for you? Test it out with 7 free sessions before deciding.
Pros and Cons
Freedom offers a free version and three different paid plans:
- Monthly Premium: $8.99 per month.
- Yearly Premium: $3.33 per month
- Forever: $ 99.50 just once
The great pro of freedom, in addition to its ease of use and effectiveness, is the possibility of a lifetime subscription deal; you pay only once and the app is yours forever.
This makes this tool also one of the best focus apps, which I recommend if you need a simple method to increase your concentration
TickTick is another popular interesting app that offers time-blocking and time-tracking features.
Available both on iOS and Android offers task management tools, such as to-do lists, habit tracking, Kanban boards, and a Pomodoro Timer.
You can add tasks with due dates, set up reminders, and view everything on a neat calendar.
They offer a free plan that’s pretty solid, but if you wanna unlock all the bells and whistles, it’s just $27.99 per year, definitely the cheapest app in this list.
Not bad, right? The focus on task management makes this a go-to app for daily planning or tackling big project lists.
Plus, checking things off feels oh-so-good!
With TickTick front and center in my arsenal of apps, I’m crushing my to-do list one task at a time – consider me a fan!
Designed to be intuitive and easy to navigate, Upbase.io is another app to keep all your tasks in one place.
It mixes timeboxing with a sprinkle of time blocking and Pomodoro to help you master your time like a pro.
The web app and Chrome extension come packed with features made for getting things done.
Picture this: an easy-to-use calendar, daily notes that keep your thoughts in check, and a handy Pomodoro timer to break tasks into bite-sized pieces.
You can get started without paying a dime because there’s a free plan waiting just for you (or anyone else; unlimited users are the cherry on top).
Want to unlock all its unique features?
Its premium plan goes for $5 per month for the yearly plan to $8 per month per person if you choose the monthly subscription.
Fantastical is not a specific app for time boxing, but thanks to its time management and task scheduling functions, it can help you take advantage of this powerful ally.
You can schedule time to complete tasks alongside your calendar events and easily share files and photos directly from your Cloud or Google Drive.
But its unique feature is the natural language processing ability to create tasks without writing the whole sentence in your calendar.
It’s also intuitive and user-friendly, key features when it comes to a time boxing app.
Any.Do keeps things simple and sleek, making it a breeze to plan your day.
I love how this app lets you drag tasks right into your calendar and gets them lined up like little productivity soldiers.
It’s not just about lists; Any.Do has this cool feature called the “Moment” which nudges you every morning to review your day—kinda like having a personal coach in your pocket.
And for folks who are always on the go, its mobile apps sync seamlessly across devices, including iOS and Android.
Conclusion and Final Thoughts
Time boxing is a powerful strategy that can increase your productivity and concentration in your everyday life.
The best way to do it is to use these specific apps, which are very simple and, luckly, cheap.
Sunsama is my favorite one, perfect both for personal productivity and for entrepreneurs or managers with a particularly busy agenda to manage.
Motion AI is another valid alternative, which uses artificial intelligence to act as a virtual assistant and organize your day automatically.
Looking for something simpler? Akiflow is the right choice, thanks to its minimalist design and its user friendly interface.
Freedom, on the other hand, allows you to block all major distractions, with a version that is always free for both mobile devices and PCs.
It’s time to improve your productivity and maximize your results, and time-boxing apps will help you on this fantastic journey!