‘Clear’ Vaults into the #1 Paid App in the App Store: Is it Worth the Hype? [Review]

The much anticipated ‘to do’ app, Clear, has skyrocketed into the #1 paid app in the App Store in less than 24 hours. A product of Realmac Software, Milen, and Impending Inc., Clear has had unprecedented press coverage that has helped propel this simple app into the limelight. Does Clear live up to the hype? Let’s find out!

Currently Clear is ‘on sale’ as part of their introductory offer for $0.99. Upon launching the app a simple tutorial provides a brief overview of Clear’s features. Once the tutorial is over, there is list of ‘to do’ instructions present to enable you to learn how to use the app.


Using Clear is actually a lot of fun, as it really takes full advantage of minimalistic design and the iPhone’s Multi Touch. By ‘pulling down’ you can create a new list or task, the cursor automatically pulls up the keyboard. You are limited to 28 characters for naming tasks. Priority items can be dragged to the top, thus appearing within the darker shade of colour noting its importance. Essentially you get to create lists that have tasks within those lists. That’s basically what Clear’s all about.


Managing items and lists is quite easy. Using a variety of left or right swipes you can mark items as complete or delete them. Once deleted items are gone forever. I’d like to see an archive feature. If you want to sync your to do items with Google Tasks, or anything else–sorry, you’re out of luck. In the settings there are options to to choose a variety of colours, and if you have TweetBot installed you get a bonus theme.


Aside from the cool gestures of using Clear, the feature that actually does it for me are the sound effects. Each tone or jingle has been carefully orchestrated to match various actions. Swiping left to mark consecutive items complete results in a very satisfying crescendo notes. Every action results in some neat sounds that reinforce your decision to use the app. Also, when your items are all completed some inspiration quotes are shown. Nice touch.

Other than that, Clear is incredibly simple to use, and is meant to keep you focused on your simple lists without the fuss of extra options or buttons. I like to think of Clear as a replacement for your Post-It-Note lists, you know, like the ones you stick on your monitor or around your desk. If you expect the app to do more like sync to the web, you’re going to be sorely disappointed. Clear is best used for immediate tasks you can get done right away.

So, is Clear worth the hype? Yup. I like how the app is something completely new and innovative with its use of gestures, sounds, and colours. It limits extra features to enable you to concentrate on what needs to get done. However, on the other hand if you’re a power user of GTD you will be disappointed due to its simplicity. You’ve been warned.

How do you like Clear so far?

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