There's no shortage of time-tracking apps for Android, and they run the gamut from feature-rich to simplistic. We tested several and found that Time Recording offers the best combination of easy time-entry with the most features to help you keep track of the time you spend on your projects and clients.
- Easy check-in and check-out when you start and stop work
- Allows easy task assignment to specific projects and time to specific tasks
- Offers a complete view of all activities for the day, week and month
- Allows you to include hourly or daily rates (including overtime) so you can track how much your tasks cost you, or how much you've earned by completing them
- Homescreen widget to display the day's running total time and money spent
- Google Calendar Sync (Pro Version)
- Imports and Exports Data to and from Dropbox (Pro Version)
- Support for Tasker and Locale Plugins (Pro Version)
Time Recording is one of the most popular time-tracking apps in the Android Market, and while it's not the most simplistic app for time management available, it's certainly one of the most robust. The app makes it remarkably easy to create projects and tasks and then assign the time you spend to those tasks by checking in when you start and checking out when you're complete. You won't waste time setting Time Recording up, and you'll find yourself quickly tracking your time, which is the real goal of the app. The addition to assign billing rates and overtime to your projects and tasks make it easy to see how much money you should bill your clients for, or how much money you're spending by working on something non-billable.
Also, even on a small screen, Time Recording's built-in reports make it easy to see how much work you've done on a project over the past day, week or month, and how much money you've earned or spent in that time. Plus, the app allows you to export data quickly and easily for review on your computer. The pro version's features extend the app's functionality a great deal for a low price, and the integration with Dropbox, Tasker and Locale simply can't be beat.
Unfortunately, even though Task Recording is a great app, it's not without limitations. The free version is ad-supported, and you'll have to upgrade to pro to remove the ads. The app only allows you to assign one overtime rate to yourself at the moment, and unlike other apps in the category, you can't track mileage, travel or other non-time-related expenses in addition to your time on projects. The app could use a UI overhaul: it does a great job at displaying a great deal of data, and lets you get to the commands you need quickly, but all that text on a white background gets tiresome quickly. Plus, the fact that some of Time Recording's best features require the Pro upgrade lends credence to the argument that the free version is functional, but the real power is only available when you pay up for it.
Gleeo Time Recorder (Free) offers a much more attractive interface and a number of gorgeous views of your daily schedule, the time you've spent on different projects, and what you have coming up on your calendar. However, while the app makes it easy and attractive to set up tasks and check in and check out of those tasks, it doesn't allow you to track billing rates or costs, mileage or expenses at all -- it's strictly for time management, which may be a good thing for some users.
TimeClock ($4/free) is another freemium app that offers easy setup and easy check-in/check-out. The app also allows you to add billing rates for your tasks, toggle billing on and off for clients at any time, and set flat fee tasks that you can check in to that cost the same no matter the time spent on them. The interface is great and the data export tools are almost as strong as Time Recording, but the app doesn't offer mileage, overtime or the ability to pause tasks without clocking out. TimeClock does offer a web service to sync with though, so you can trust your logs are backed up.
If you'd rather have simpler utilities that are more geared toward personal use, consider TimePunch ($2), gbaHours Time Tracking ($5.46/free), Time Tracker ($3.99), or Timesheet (free) as alternatives that take some of the emphasis off of reporting and data analysis and instead focus more on tracking your personal and professional activities to see where your time is going. Each of them also allows you to set a billable rate for yourself, but they're more geared to the individual user who doesn't need the bells and whistles of other, more complex utilities.
If you'd rather use your Android phone to sync with a more robust desktop or web service designed for time tracking, you may consider the RescueTime (free), Harvest (free), or YAST (free) apps for Android if you're already familiar with one of those services.
Lifehacker's App Directory is a new and growing directory of recommendations for the best applications and tools in a number of given categories.