There are a lot of great apps for the iPhone. In fact, the app ecosystem is one of the reasons there are almost 1 billion iPhones in use around the world. There are literally millions of apps available, but the very best one is one you probably wouldn't expect. It's free. It's included with every new iPhone. It also might just be the best-kept secret on the iPhone. 

That's because the best app on the iPhone is the Reminders app and there's one reason why: Siri. That's right, the virtual assistant that everyone loves to hate is the secret weapon behind the most useful app on your iOS devices, especially your iPhone.

Look, Reminders isn't the most beautiful app. It's due for a makeover in the worst way, and it really only does one thing, but that one thing makes the iPhone exponentially more useful in very practical ways. In general, I'm a big fan of anything that makes my life easier, and the reality is, more than Facebook, Instagram, or even Slack, the Reminders app does exactly that. 

Recurring reminders

For example, I use it to set regular reminders for all kinds of things that I would otherwise forget to do. I have reminders set for trash day, to take medication, and even to make sure I unlock the front door before our kids get off the bus in the afternoon. I probably have a dozen or so regular reminders set for things that happen on a recurring basis.

Siri: the secret weapon

Then there's Siri. This is where the Reminders app becomes the best thing on your phone. If you have "Hey Siri," enabled on your iPhone, simply say "Hey Siri, remind me tomorrow at 9 AM to take the proposal with me." Or, "Hey Siri, remind me in an hour to leave for my meeting." Siri will create a reminder and alert you at the right time so you don't forget.

Location-based reminders

Even better are location-based reminders. Say "Hey Siri, remind me when I leave to pick up milk," and she'll use your current location and alert you to pick up milk when you leave that location. Or say, "Hey Siri, remind me when I get home to call mom." As long as you've set your home location, Siri will remind you when you arrive that you're long overdue for a call to your mother. 

Reminders sync to all your devices via iCloud

Since Reminders syncs across all of your iOS and Mac devices using iCloud, it isn't just useful on your iPhone. You can set and receive notifications on your iMac at your desk, on your iPhone in your pocket, or on your Apple Watch. In fact, my kids think I'm weird because they'll catch me lifting my wrist to say "Hey Siri, remind me in an hour to email Steve the proposal." 

I'm a big believer that the best technology is whatever makes your life better in some tangible way. For busy entrepreneurs and CEOs finding it challenging to stay organized and keep track of the day's list of todos, the Reminders app on your iPhone is a simple but powerful way that does it better than just about anything else. It's not that other apps aren't great, but the combination of Siri voice commands, time and location awareness, and the fact that we always have our phones with us, makes it an app that thrives in a unique way on the iPhone. 

Published on: May 2, 2019
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