- Smooth scrolling calendar
- Zoom into multi-day (1-14 days) views with a tap and drag
- Month, agenda, day and event views
- Quickly fade certain calendars in and out with one tap
- Search through events
- Customisable widgets for month, week, day and agenda views
- Tap a day to see a popup of that day’s events
- Many options for recurring events
- Drag and drop in multi-day view to copy events (Pro only)
- Link contacts to an event (Pro only)
- Change font sizes (Pro only)
- Select individual calendars for each widget (Pro only)
Business Calendar is not the most advanced calendar on the Market, though it should be enough for almost everybody, and it its incredible interface is worth losing one or two features to the competition. Instead of having views for “week”, “4-day”, “month”, and so on, you start with a month view and can tap and drag on a certain set of days to shrink the view to those days. It’s really well done. Tapping on a specific day brings up a small pop-up of that day’s events, and you can swipe to an agenda view if you’d rather see your month that way. It has a list of calendars at the bottom from which you can show and hide different calendars, though it gets a bit unruly if you have a lot of calendars. You can also drag and drop events, which is really awesome if, say, you have the same event three days in a row and don’t want to re-create it three times. Its widgets are also very pretty and functional. Basically, it’s insanely easy to use, and much easier to navigate than pretty much any other calendar out there.
Alone, it doesn’t have a lot of cons, save for maybe some more advanced features when it comes to creating repeating events (though it still does a pretty good job of that too). Compared to other calendar apps, though, it does lack in some features like task list support, or integration with other apps like Google Maps. Frankly, though, besides a few missing features that few other calendars have, its ease of use makes it feel like the perfect calendar app.
Jorte is a close second, and its biggest strength over Business Calendar is the ability to show your tasks list under your calendar, and show your day’s agenda under the month view when you click on it. It’s a really nice way to see everything at once. However, its inability to sync with any tasks service makes that feature less useful. It has a multitude of different views, and can also integrate with apps like Google Maps — if you add a location to your event, you can tap on that location to see it in the Maps app. Jorte is by far the most popular calendar app on the Market, and with good reason: it’s free, has some nice features, and integrates with other apps, but it just doesn’t hold up to Business Calendar’s ease of use.
CalenGoo is another fantastic app. Its interface isn’t as mind-blowing as Business Calendar’s, but it is very readable and easy to use, just in a more traditional sense. You have a few different views across the top to choose from, you can tap on a day to see more and create events, and so on. CalenGoo’s biggest strength is the addition of Google Tasks support, if you’d like to have both your tasks and calendar in the same app (though it lacks the combined calendar and tasks interface of Jorte). It also has the most advanced “repeating events” system of any calendar on Android. If you have more advanced needs when it comes to creating events, though, CalenGoo’s a great one to look at.
Pocket Informant is a well-known name from the Windows Mobile world, though it isn’t quite as good on Android (yet) as it was on Windows. It’s slow, ugly, and costs a whopping $US10. It does sync with Toodledo, which is nice if you’re a Toodledo user, and has a very highly configurable interface, but in its current state, doesn’t really compete with the alternatives.
Gemini Calendar‘s interface isn’t pretty, but it’s main “month-view-on-the-bottom, agenda-view-on-the-top” is very well laid out. You can tap on any day on the bottom half of the screen to see that day’s agenda on the top half, without ever switching to another view, which is pretty nice. It also has the ability to create links within an event for email addresses, phone numbers, web URLs and locations, which is a feature we wish more apps had. It isn’t super advanced, but if other calendar interfaces aren’t doing it for you, Gemini does it in a unique and well thought out way.
Touch Calendar is similar to Business Calendar in the sense that it focuses on the interface. You navigate Touch Calendar using the touch screen gestures you’re used to in other apps, like pinch to zoom, scrolling, and so on. It’s nice, and definitely a good use of multitouch gestures, but just doesn’t translate to a calendar quite as well. It’s more intuitive than Business Calendar, perhaps, but Business Calendar’s use of the touch screen is better once you figure out how to use it (which, honestly, takes about 60 seconds).
Many of you are probably still using the stock Google Calendar app. It isn’t a bad app, per se — it doesn’t make you run for the hills looking for an alternative — but we promise you, once you try any of the above options, you won’t go back. Google Calendar works well enough, but the interface is a little clunkier, and all your settings are very basic compared to the alternatives. If you ever use your calendar on your phone, we can’t recommend taking a look at the alternatives enough. You’ll be glad you did.
Lifehacker’s App Directory is a new and growing directory of recommendations for the best applications and tools in a number of given categories.