Astrid integrates with Siri for voice-powered reminders

If you find the iOS Reminders app a bit limited, you're sure to like Astrid better -- especially now that it works with Siri.

Task manager Astrid can now import your Siri-created reminders.
Task manager Astrid can now import your Siri-created reminders. Astrid

I rely pretty heavily on the iOS Reminders app -- not because it's especially good (it's not), but because it works with Siri. I love being able to dictate tasks ("Remind me to call Bob at 3 o'clock," for example) while I'm driving or otherwise hands-occupied.

That's a key reason I've stuck with Reminders, even when there are so many other better to-do-list apps out there. Thankfully, one them just offered a chance at liberation: Astrid now offers Siri integration.

In case you're not familiar with it, Astrid is widely regarded as one of the top iOS task managers. Indeed, Lifehacker readers named it their favorite in a poll conducted last summer. And check out its new Gmail reminder add-on for Chrome .

The app already let you create reminders using your voice, but now it goes a step further by working with Siri. That means you don't have to run Astrid when you want to add a task; just give Siri the heads-up like you normally would.

It's kind of a work-around, but it works. When you use Siri to create a task, she adds it to Reminders, same as always. But then Astrid imports any and all new tasks from Reminders, with the option of deleting (i.e., completing) the original if you want (so you don't get double notifications).

To set this up, install Astrid on your iPhone, iPod, or iPad, tap the Menu button (top-left corner), and then tap Profile. Scroll all the way down and tap Import Siri & Reminders.

What I did next was to enable Import from Reminders, then tap Import Now (to copy over my existing tasks). With that done, Astrid asked if I'd like to mark my Reminders tasks as "complete" after importing them, to which I agreed.

Presto! Now every reminder I ask Siri to create lands almost instantly in Astrid. Easy-peasy.

There's just one problem: Astrid doesn't currently support location-specific reminders. So if I say, "Remind me to call Bob when I get home," Astrid produces a task that reads simply, "Call Bob." At the very least, the app needs to be able to move any location information into the task description. But obviously it would be better if it could further emulate Reminders and tap into my iPhone's GPS.

Until then, I may stick with Reminders. But I'm glad to see that my favorite alternative is getting cozy with Siri. Here's hoping it gets even cozier in the near future.

What do you think of this Siri integration? Just what the task manager ordered, or not quite there yet? What's your favorite Reminders replacement?

 

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