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Moleskine Actions – stylish list-making app

Developer: Moleskine Srl
Price: Free to download
Subscription: $2/month or $12/year
Size: 79.6 MB
Version: 1.7.5

Moleskine Actions

Update! We reviewed Moleskine Actions nears launch in March 2018. Since then there have been numerous updates, right up to version 1.7.5 (as of February 2020). With that in mind, we thought we’d take a look at how far the app has come.

So what’s new? A lot of UI tweaks and improvements, but this is still very much the same stylish-but-light to-do list app with the same payment model. Version 1.1 added Voiceover support, while 1.2 brought support for a bunch of new text input types in notes. 1.3 added support for Siri Shortcuts, Daily Brief, recently completed tasks and more. 1.4 supplied new layouts for action creation, and 1.5 added a number of Apple Watch-specific features. 1.6 provided a general spruce up, and Version 1.7 synced up with iOS 13’s big additions.

Revised rating: Remains a pretty, competent organizer. ★★★½


Our original review, written in March 2018, is presented in its entirety below.

The App Store isn’t exactly short of stylish task management apps, but all of them will have taken a deep breath when they saw that Moleskine was entering the arena.

More commonly associated with beautiful yet functional physical notebooks, Moleskine has steadily expanded into the world of tasteful productivity apps – and with some success. Moleskine Timepage is one of our favorite calendar apps.

Switching between lists is pleasingly visual

One glaring omission from Timepage – at least compared to some of its rivals – was the ability to create to-do lists and associated reminders. Rather than add this feature, Moleskine as created a stand-alone list-making app in Moleskine Actions.

It certainly maintains the tasteful Moleskine aesthetic, with a predominantly monochrome palette (you can choose between white text on black or black text on white) in the default Schedule view, and the kind of sharp typographic work that would probably have Apple’s designers nodding sagely.

Even choosing list colors feels special

Building a list by tapping the icon to the bottom right of the screen introduces a bolt of color, as you’re offered an app switcher-like carousel of all the lists you’ve created. Adding a list from here quickly takes you through the stages of creating a title, picking a color from a screen full of gently wandering circular samples, and then adding items using a keyboard.

Actions will also pick out things like the natural use of dates in your list entries (‘tomorrow’ or ‘on Wednesday’ for example), and schedule the item accordingly.

Actions will pick out dates and schedule accordingly

Siri integration feels less natural, however. We asked Siri to add bananas to our Shopping List in Actions, yet Siri then asked us which list to add it to. It then asked us to confirm whether we wanted to call the item ‘bananas,’ by which time we might as well have inputted the item manually.

Of course, this is quite possibly more an issue with Siri than with Actions, but it’s worth dispelling the myth that Actions will be fully integrated with your usual iOS workflow. It’s otherwise so slick and Apple-like in its approach, you might well expect it to.

Siri being a bit dim? Never!

It’s the little touches that win you over here, such as the thrillingly tactile way you tick off list items. Dragging them to the left gives you a slight rumble, a visual tick-through effect, and a little audible chime before disappearing. You can also schedule a reminder for individual list items by dragging in the opposite direction.

Timepage users can instantly skip across and add list items as calendar entries. Conversely, they will find that ordinary calendar entries appear as small bullet points on the Schedule view.

Timepage users will have their calendars integrated

Many would still have preferred a fully integrated solution rather than having to flip between two apps – not least because Actions requires a separate subscription. The developers argue that this gives users the choice to only pay for the features they actually want, but it’s a shame there’s no combined subscription or discount for Timepage users.

Indeed, it’s difficult to get away from the feeling that $1.99/£1.79 per month or $11.99/£10.49 per year is a little steep for an app with such a limited scope.

Logbook shows you all your ticked-off items

Still, it’s not a lot of money to pay in the grand scheme of things. What that subscription fee buys you is a task management app with an uncommon sense of style – even if Actions doesn’t quite have the stand-alone substance to match.