Calendars have been used throughout the ages as a way of organising one’s work, social, or religious events into a single view. The dawn of mobile applications meant that this could be taken on the go and provide necessary reminders to get things done at ease. For some, especially business users, the calendar is the most important app on their phone.
Android has a built-in calendar app, and some phone manufacturers, who add their own skin on top of vanilla Android, also provide their own calendar app. However, for those looking for something new, there’s also a bunch of alternatives available on Google’s Android Market.
In this roundup, we’ll be taking a look at a handful of the best looking and most functional calendar replacement apps and discussing which is the best.
AnCal is a simple calendar in the style of the old Palm WebOS. The simple design of this app really suits Android and it functions well with handling appointments, tasks and notes. Unfortunately, AnCal does not support Google Calendar sync, which, on Android, is a definite disadvantage.
In particular, I love the user interface in setting new alarms and tasks (as demonstrated in the screenshots below). Selecting timings looks great and works really well with Android’s more basis interface elements.
Market Link: AnCal
Pocket Informant is, in sharp contrast, a paid app that also serves as a replacement calendar app for your Android phone. The app’s feedback suggests the app does not sync with Google Calendar, which is another disappointment, but it uses a similar structure in terms of folders and general organisation.
Pocket Informant boasts many different calendar views including the standard month/week/etc. views and pre-made filters such as completed/uncompleted tasks. Overall, the system seems very similar to Google’s own web-based properties such as the aforementioned calendar app and GMail.There’s a massive wealth of various additional/miscellaneous features that I can’t cover because they’re too unnoticeable, but they contribute to an overall intuitive and friendly experience on possibly the best app on this list.
Jorte is a practical personal organiser which aims to look and feel much more like a traditional, paper-based planner. This isn’t achieved in a way you’d expect (for example, the style of Apple’s iBooks pages), but rather by bringing across a few elements of traditional calendars.
Jorte boasts additional features such as a landscape view and can even be controlled with Google Voice. There’s also CSV importing if you deem that necessary for business or personal reasons. Jorte’s implementation seems pretty successful, especially for those with larger phones.
CalenGoo is an app that, from first impressions, looks very much like a scaled down version of Google’s calendar web app. And that’s not just some imitation because there is a lack of synchronization. Oh no! This app actually includes direct sync with Google Calendar and Tasks. Hallelujah!
CalenGoo also comes with built in widgets to be placed on your phone’s homescreen so launching the app can be a rare occasion.
The task and agenda implementation here is probably my favourite feature, as it’s managed with a clean style without too much clutter. Some, however, might completely hate the user interface.
This application has, by far, the cleanest design in a traditional grid-oriented setup. TouchCalendar markets itself as being as easy to work as Google Maps thanks to its intuitive scrolling and zooming gesture interface.
TouchCalendar also syncs with Google Calendar, which is a clear advantage, and keeps many of the customization options such as calendar colours. These little interface tweaks that you created in the web version are all brought down, which is convenient.
Everything is about navigation here with a wide range of gestures being used to move around the calendar and perform actions such as adding new events.
What’s the Best?
Each of these calendar replacement applications are good, but there are some which are great! I’m particularly attracted to PocketInformant which seems the most functional and the most user-friendly with its wide range of features, filters and folders. The only real downfall is its current lack of Google Calendar syncing support. However, since this applications’ public beta featured this option, it could be coming in a future update.
The other app I’m drawn to is Touch Calendar because of its implementation of multi-touch gestures. This just makes it seem so much more like a smartphone app rather than just interacting with a website, which is a clear advantage in the mobile application race.
Hopefully you’ve found a replacement app here that you like. There are many rival calendar apps out there so suggest any in the comments if you prefer others.