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Review: organize and plan your downtime with Sofa

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Developer: Astrio LLC
Price: Free [$3.99/£3.49 for Super Sofa monthly]
Size: 187.3 MB
Version: 3.4.15
Platform: iPhone & iPad


Sofa’s sole developer, Shawn Hickman, describes Sofa as a “downtime organizer”. It’s a pithy summary, but it doesn’t really begin to broach what the app can do for you.

That’s no knock on Hickman’s PR skills, but rather a reflection of the sprawling scope of his app.

Media can be broken down according to type

It’s essentially a reading list app that covers multiple types of media. Movies, books, games, music, and apps are the main order of the day here, and can be tracked through Sofa’s clean UI. Podcasts and Audiobooks are also trackable, though you’ll need to add those to the Things to Listen To section, or else the miscellaneous The Pile section.

Board games were also included right up until the beginning of October 2023, when the company that supplied the relevant database shut down.

The search function makes use of separate media databases

Sofa doesn’t feature an introductory tutorial section, which might be advisable given the sheer breadth of functions on offer here, but the app is fairly self-explanatory. From the opening screen you tap the + icon and select a category, then search for and select the specific piece of media to add to the relevant list.

Searching for each individual media type is handled by a specialist service, which also determines the level of information and the comprehensiveness of the coverage. So, for example, JustWatch provides the movie and TV database, which results in an impressively comprehensive offering, including where you can watch a given movie or show.

Movies and TV shows make use of JustWatch data

Books and music are decidedly less comprehensive, with books in particular missing a number of titles from the database.

Once you’ve consumed a piece of media, you can send it to the Activity log, either directly or from a previous list entry. By adding the date on which you watched, listened to, read, or played the piece of media, you’ll soon have a handy log of how you’ve been spending your down time.

The Activity section lets you log what you’ve been consuming

We were a little confused as to the utility of The Shelf section at first. In a related video, Hickman reveals that this is intended for prioritisation, helping you to pull out things that you want to watch imminently.

Sticky notes can be added to each individual entry, which is handy for reminding yourself as to the reason for its inclusion, or to offer some comments on what you thought of it after the fact.

Sticky Notes can remind you why you’ve added a piece of media

Sofa is free to download, but paying $3.99/£3.49 per month unlocks additional data points, including links for where to consume media. There’s no free trial for this tier, but you’ll grasp much of the function from the basic free offering.

If you’re someone who finds yourself struggling to remember all of the media recommendations that come your way, or to track everything that you have seen or read, Sofa could be just the little nudge that you need.