Apple Watch offers great opportunities for making OmniFocus even more useful. Regardless of whether you own OmniFocus 2 for iPhone or the Universal edition of OmniFocus 2 you'll get timely notifications on your wrist and the ability to dictate a Reminder to Siri, then have OmniFocus capture it.
In addition to these features, the Universal edition of OmniFocus 2 includes a Watch extension that gives you even more. Designed deliberately for Apple's most personal device, OmniFocus for Apple Watch brings your tasks into greater harmony with how you move through the day.
We built OmniFocus for Apple Watch to specifically address situations where having OmniFocus on your wrist is the best option, distilling it to the essence of what you need right now.
At a Glance — Use the OmniFocus Glance for the quickest possible access to the shape of your day. When you're in the car trying to decide whether there's time to squeeze in a stop at the drug store before picking up Fido from the vet, the OmniFocus Glance comes to the rescue with the time and title of your next due action.
OmniFocus Today — When you have a bit more time (and another hand free), the OmniFocus for Apple Watch home screen fills in the canvas of today's most essential items so you can plan ahead. Jog your memory about the juice boxes for tonight's soccer game, or if they're stowed safely in the trunk, check off that task!
Continuity — When you're using OmniFocus for Apple Watch, you're not using it alone. Actions you check off are also marked completed on your iPhone, and from there, synced with your other devices. And views carry over, too! Get set up for a meeting by visiting the Weekly one-on-one context on your phone, then put it away — it's available right there on your Apple Watch.
A Relevant Presence — OmniFocus for Apple Watch is with you when you need it. Notifications — shared with iPhone — give you a gentle reminder on your wrist, just as you've set them up to do. Never miss an item on a grocery list, and never miss a thought for that new novel — raise your wrist with the OmniFocus app, and with a Force Touch and a tap, speak to add the idea to your database.
Before we dive in to the details of how OmniFocus for Apple Watch lends a helping hand, we'll go over the initial setup process of pairing your iPhone with your Apple Watch.
Setting Up OmniFocus for Apple Watch
If you haven’t already paired Apple Watch to your iPhone, that should be your first order of business. On iPhone, open the Apple Watch app and tap Start Pairing.
When your iPhone and Apple Watch are successfully paired, you'll be able to choose the apps you'd like to use there — OmniFocus among them. Scroll down in My Watch until you find OmniFocus, then tap it to view the individual settings. OmniFocus is set to show on Apple Watch by default, but if you'd like to change that you can do so here.
Note: At present, Apple Watch can only be paired with iPhone 5 or later running iOS 8.3 or later. Pairing Apple Watch with iPad is not supported at this time.
Once setup is complete on your iPhone, press the Digital Crown of your Apple Watch to access the home screen, where you'll find the OmniFocus icon waiting for you. When you're looking at the watch face you can swipe up from the bottom of the screen to view your available Glances, and OmniFocus will be waiting for you there, too! Tap the OmniFocus app icon or Glance to open the OmniFocus app on your Apple Watch.
Using OmniFocus for Apple Watch
We identified a few main situations where the personal, lightweight experience of Apple Watch can help OmniFocus users be more productive and worry less. OmniFocus for Apple Watch is carefully designed to work great in those situations.
Just the Facts, At A Glance
When you're on the run (perhaps literally) and you'd like the quickest possible overview of tasks that matter to you today, swipe up from the bottom of your Apple Watch face to access your Glances. Then just swipe horizontally until you see OmniFocus.
The OmniFocus Glance contains the most important information about your upcoming work on one screen. It accounts for times when you're all caught up, too — either way, it's a useful reminder when you have the nagging feeling that there's something you're forgetting.
Past Due — If you have items scheduled for completion today, the OmniFocus Glance shows a count of your past due actions at the top of the screen.
Due Today — A count of today's due items is shown on the left. If nothing is due today but some tasks are past due, the past due count will be displayed here instead. A friendly Done is shown when you're all caught up for the day.
Up Next — The title of today's soonest upcoming item is displayed at the bottom of the screen, along with the time it's due. If you have only past due items, the details of the oldest item are shown here instead.
Surveying Your Day with the OmniFocus Home Screen
The OmniFocus Glance is great for times when you don't want to — or can't — interact much with your Apple Watch. When you have a little room to breathe, tap the Glance (or the OmniFocus icon on the Apple Watch home screen) to visit the OmniFocus app itself.
The OmniFocus home screen shows a more detailed overview of your work, in a format deliberately tailored to today's priorities. Because of the way it's designed, the home screen acts as its own sort of 'focus' zone on what you've set as your most important tasks. This makes it great for viewing and updating the status of your day, without adding complexity that demands more of your attention.
The top row is a condensed version of your Forecast, which counts items by due date. The second row counts the items you’ve marked with a flag and the unprocessed items in your inbox.
Tap any count on the home screen to open the list it represents. Each action shows a color-coded status circle — just like on OmniFocus for Mac and iOS — so you can immediately see which items are due, flagged, repeating, or completed.
Viewing a set of items from the OmniFocus for Apple Watch home screen is a great way to check off multiple items on a shopping list or work through a series of meeting notes, for example. Changes you make on your Apple Watch happen on your iPhone, too, and sync from there to any of your other devices with OmniFocus.
Always Within Reach — OmniFocus Across Devices
When you establish a relationship between your Apple Watch and your iPhone by pairing them, you forge the means by which OmniFocus for Apple Watch communicates with the outside world. Changes you make on one device are automatically synced with the other, and changes that appear on your iPhone get synced with all of your other sync-enabled OmniFocus devices.
Pairing your Apple Watch and your iPhone also enables a two-way workflow between them:
The flow from OmniFocus on your iPhone to OmniFocus on your Apple Watch (which happens automatically);
The flow from OmniFocus on your Apple Watch to OmniFocus on your iPhone (also called Handoff).
This connection provides the special feature of continuity between OmniFocus on your iPhone and Apple Watch in the continuity slot on the OmniFocus for Apple Watch home screen.
If a certain list or Perspective is especially important to you right now — groceries, nearby actions, or your daily review, for example — just open it up on your iPhone. The same list appears on the OmniFocus for Apple Watch home screen, in the continuity slot at the bottom. As you navigate around OmniFocus for iPhone, OmniFocus for Apple Watch keeps up so you can put any project, context, or custom perspective right on your wrist.
Even with the iPhone put away, the list remains on Apple Watch so you can have easy access to it anywhere. And all the grouping and sorting of your OmniFocus lists are preserved on Apple Watch, so your items are organized by project, context, date, and so on, just as you are used to seeing them.
If you need to work with your items in more detail, the continuity goes both ways. Just swipe the Handoff icon on your iPhone’s home screen to go directly to the same list, Perspective, or individual item you were just viewing on your Apple Watch.
Staying in the Loop with Notifications
OmniFocus for Apple Watch is designed to be an app that lives with you on your wrist. It doesn't try to replace OmniFocus on your iPhone or your Mac; instead, it takes a single role seriously and does it as well as it possibly can, by showing information on things you've defined as most important in the here-and-now.
This includes notifications, which work on your Apple Watch just like notifications on your iPhone. "Item due" alerts have the same options to complete the item right then or snooze it (deferring the reminder — but not the due date of the action itself — for another 15 minutes).
Since OmniFocus for Apple Watch is relying on settings for alerts set up on your iPhone, the same level of control over location-based notifications is available there. So, for example, your Apple Watch can let you know — gently — that you're forgetting that casserole for the potluck when you leave your house, or remind you as you're leaving the office that Kristina mentioned something about tickets for tomorrow's soccer game.
To get notifications working on your Apple Watch, open the Apple Watch app on your iPhone and scroll down in My Watch until you find Notifications. Tap it, and scroll down to the Mirror iPhone Alerts From section; make sure that OmniFocus is turned on.
Because the Apple Watch app only controls which alerts are mirrored from your iPhone, you'll also want to be sure that your iOS Notifications Settings include alerts from OmniFocus on your iPhone, too.
Interacting with Tasks
Much of the power of OmniFocus for Apple Watch comes from a design that shows you just what you choose for the near term — a scope designed for the customizable display on your wrist.
Making changes to your items is something we treat with similar reverence. We chose tools that make sense for editing on a personal, immediate device, that can be used quickly, conveniently, and efficiently — staying out of the way unless and until you need them.
- Completing Actions
Completing actions in OmniFocus for Apple Watch is simple: wherever you see a status circle, tap it to complete the associated item. This is great for checking off lists viewed from the home screen, or completing items in the individual action view.
Note: Actions are the only items that can be marked complete in OmniFocus for Apple Watch. When you're in need of more detailed control, the iOS and Mac apps are designed to be your trusted system for making other, more complex changes to the state of items in your database.
- Adding Inbox Items
Adding items to your OmniFocus inbox is a top priority no matter which device you're on. Since the Apple Watch doesn't have a keyboard, a space-age alternative is available: you can use your voice to record the titles of new actions. Force Touch anywhere within the app to reveal the menu, then tap New Item and start speaking.
Items added to OmniFocus in this way appear in your inbox, just as if you'd tapped the New Inbox Item button and created a task in OmniFocus for iOS. They're transferred to your iPhone and tucked away safely until you have time to review them.
Note:If you have Reminders Capture set up on your iPhone, you can add OmniFocus items from anywhere on your Apple Watch. Just speak to Siri as if you're adding a reminder and she'll make it so! See this support article for details on setting up Reminders Capture.
- Flagging Actions
If you're viewing the details of an action, you can flag (or unflag) it. Force Touch to show the menu, and tap Flag Item. This is a great way to promote a task to a more visible level of importance right away, without going to the trouble of assigning a due date or updating a context.
When you're in a meeting, in transit, or otherwise pressed for time that can be devoted to OmniFocus on your iPhone, flagging important actions on your Apple Watch is a good way to remember that they'll need some attention soon.
- Viewing Action Details
The greatest amount of detail in OmniFocus for Apple Watch can be found by tapping the title of an action in any of the app's list views.
Screen Title — When navigating deeper in the app, the colored text at the top of the screen — the screen title — tells you which screen you're viewing.
Action Title — When viewing an action in detail, its title is prominently displayed here.
Project — If the action is assigned to a project, the related project is shown here.
Due Date — Likewise, if the action has a due date, you'll see it here.
Status Circle — Finally, the large status circle provides an easy target for tapping to complete it.
Try out an interactive preview of OmniFocus for Apple Watch on the OmniFocus product page.
For more general information on using your Apple Watch, see Apple's great video tutorials.
The official OmniFocus Forums are also a great place to find out more innovative uses for OmniFocus, and interact with passionate OmniFocus users.
The OmniFocus for iOS documentation provides an introduction to the app as a whole, and Inside OmniFocus highlights specific ways that some experienced users have customized OmniFocus to suit their needs.View Article
When an app on your iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad is behaving an an unexpected way, our Support Humans may ask you to send along a Console Log. The log can tell us exactly what is going on behind the scenes and help get you back up and running quickly. In order to get the Console Log from your device, you'll need to download a special utility.
Step 1: Download and install the iOS Console application
LemonJar makes a free application called iOS Console, which is very handy for retrieving console logs from an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.
Step 2: Connect your iOS Device
Launch iOS Console and plug your device into your computer. After a few moments, a window should appear that displays the console log.
Step 3: Copy the Console Log to an email
Copy and paste the console results in a reply to a message from the Support Human you're working with. We'll do the rest! If you get stuck at any point, don't forget that you can reach us by phone at +1 800-315-6664 between 10am and 5pm PST/PDT (GMT-8/GMT-7).View Article
If you're using OmniFocus 2 on an iOS device with Siri (iPhone 4S and later, iPad 3rd generation and later, all iPad Minis, and iPod Touch 5th generation), and you would like it to keep track of the reminders you give to Siri, all you need to do is check a few settings on your device and you can start adding spoken items to your Inbox in no time.
To set up OmniFocus 2 so it captures your reminders from Siri:
On your Siri-enabled device, drag down from near the top of the OmniFocus home screen to reveal the secret bar (on iPhone), or drag down on the home sidebar (iPad and iPhone 6 Plus) to reveal the secret bar.
Tap Settings in the secret bar.
In the Capture section, tap Reminders.
You'll see the Reminders screen. Tap Allow Access to Reminders to prompt OmniFocus to request access. If you've previously declined reminders access, tap "Open Settings" to enable this capability. Finally, turn on the Reminders Capture switch in the OmniFocus settings. If you have multiple Reminders lists set up, choose the list you want OmniFocus to capture from. (If you only have one reminders list, OmniFocus assumes that's the one you want).
Warning: You should only configure Reminders Capture on a single iOS device. If you rely on iCloud to sync your reminders across devices and you have OmniFocus on iPad and iPhone, you could end up with duplicate entries in your Inbox.
To record a new Inbox item with Siri, try these phrases:
“Siri, remember to...” records a task to the system default Reminders list. OmniFocus grabs it from that list if it's the one you have chosen to capture.
“Siri, remind me to...at (date and time)” records a task to the default list, and assigns a due date.
In iOS 8, you can now use "remember to" and "remind me to" somewhat interchangeably. If you specify a time after either of these phrases, it will be assigned as a due date.
“Siri, remind me when I get to (or leave)...” records a task to the default list with a contact location attached. If you choose a specific location, make sure it matches an OmniFocus context location.
Note: Use the small dot distance (200 meters/650 feet) if you would like OmniFocus to capture Siri-transcribed actions associated with that location.
“Add ... to my OmniFocus list” records a task to a list named OmniFocus if you have one set up in Reminders. OmniFocus captures the task if that's the list you've chosen.
Replace OmniFocus with the name of whatever list you'd prefer!
When OmniFocus captures a Reminder, it removes the item from the Reminders so that there’s no confusion about where it belongs. To keep your data safe, there are some Reminders items that OmniFocus will not claim. (Reminders will retain ownership of the data and it will not be lost.) These are items that have data beyond what OmniFocus can track, such as contact locations outside the set of small-size OmniFocus context radii you have established.
For this reason, the location-based aspects of capture are most effective when you tailor the locations of your OmniFocus contexts as closely as possible to your location-based Reminders contacts.View Article
What is Mail Drop?
Mail Drop is a new feature of the Omni Sync Server that lets you send emails directly into your OmniFocus Inbox. You can create multiple private send-to addresses in order to give access to third parties, and delete those addresses at any time.
- Forwarding actionable emails from your PC at work;
- Processing emails on your iPhone or iPad;
- Using IFTTT (If This Then That) to automate all kinds of internet-y things;
- Allowing a partner to delegate actions directly into your OmniFocus system.
How to get started
If you're already using the Omni Sync Server to sync OmniFocus, you can log in to the sync server web interface and create your first Mail Drop address. After logging in, just click the Create Address button to automatically generate the email address (a combination of your account name and a random string of characters)
If you don't have a Sync Server account yet, you can sign up here. The account creation process includes instructions for configuring OmniFocus to use your new account (it's as simple as tapping or clicking a link in an email).
What kind of information can I add to OmniFocus via Mail Drop?
When you send an email message to Mail Drop, the subject line of that message will become the name of your new Inbox item. The body of the message will become the note; it can contain text, attachments, and simple HTML (more complex formatting is stripped).
I'm already using the OmniFocus Mail Rule and Clip-O-Tron or email@example.com to process email.
Mail Drop is designed to have fewer external dependencies than our current solutions that involve Mail on OS X. Each time the OS has been updated recently, we have had to do a significant amount of work to keep basic functionality working, and in some cases have not been able to restore features. While Mail Drop's functionality is currently basic, we plan on using the time saved to add more features so that it has the best of all of the previous solutions.
Can I specify my own Mail Drop address?
The string of characters after your username in your Mail Drop address is random as a precaution against spam, malware, and other nefarious things from making their way to your OmniFocus inbox. (If you have a problem with an address, you can always delete that Mail Drop address from your Account Management page and create a new one to get a new unique string.) Adding the address to your Contacts makes it easy to use Mail Drop without having to remember the whole address.
If you'd prefer a custom address that's easier to give out, you could create an alias address through your email provider that forwards to your sync address. For more info, read: iCloud: Create or change email aliases
Please note: Since email attachments are included when you add to OmniFocus via Mail Drop, keep in mind that those attachments will add to the overall size of your database until removed. The larger your database is, the longer sync will take and the more data this will consume (if you're on a cellular connection). In other words, you might not want to set up a rule to automatically forward your entire email inbox to OmniFocus! If you're forwarding a lot of emails with attachments, we recommend cleaning out old attachments every so often, as outlined here.View Article
As of May 2013, we've introduced OmniPresence support to our document-based iPad apps, so that they can automatically sync documents via a WebDAV server — such as our own free Omni Sync Server. You can access the same documents on your desktop or laptop by installing OmniPresence for Mac.
If you don't already have a free Omni Sync Server account, you can sign up for one here.
Setting up OmniPresence in OmniOutliner 2 for iOS and OmniGraffle 2 for iOS
- Open OmniOutliner or OmniGraffle to the document picker. Tap Locations at the top left to back out to the list of available file locations.
- Tap Add Cloud Account, then Add Omni Sync Server Account and enter your sync credentials.
- Tap Save to test the credentials and finish the account configuration process.
After the compatibility check is complete, you’ll be able to tap the new Server folder in the file location list. To move files from Local Documents to your OmniPresence cloud folder:
- Open the Local Documents location, then tap Select in the toolbar.
- Tap to select the documents you’d like to move.
- Tap the folder icon in the toolbar, then Move to "(OmniPresence folder name)". The files will be moved from Local Documents to your cloud sync folder.
Setting up OmniPresence in OmniOutliner for iPad (v1), OmniGraffle for iPad (v1), and OmniGraphSketcher for iPad
- Tap the Local Documents title in the toolbar and choose Cloud Setup, then Add Omni Sync Server Account.
- Enter your Omni Sync Server login information, and be sure that OmniPresence is checked. (If not, the server will act as remote storage instead of actively syncing updates and changes).
- When you're ready, tap Connect. The app will do some compatibility checks, and then your new folder will be connected to the cloud.
After connecting you'll find yourself looking at an empty cloud folder. To move files from Local Documents to your OmniPresence cloud folder:
- Tap the title in the toolbar and choose Local Documents.
- Tap Edit in the toolbar, and tap to select the documents you'd like to move.
- Tap Share, then Move to "(OmniPresence folder name)". The files will be moved from Local Documents to your cloud sync folder.
Staying in Sync
Files stored in an OmniPresence-enabled folder will sync automatically whenever changes are made to them. To stop syncing a file, just move it back to Local Documents. To disconnect a synced folder, go to Cloud Setup and tap Edit to delete the folder from your list of OmniPresence accounts. Note that this won't delete any remaining contents of the folder; the files will remain in the cloud, but won't be affected by changes on this device.
The OmniPresence button appears in the toolbar when viewing a synced folder in the document browser as well as when editing a document in a synced folder. It animates to indicate a sync is in process, and if needed you can tap it to prompt a sync as well.
"Where are my files?"
If you connect to your Omni Sync Server account using Finder or a third-party WebDAV client, you most likely will not see anything. This is because OmniPresence stores your sync data in a hidden folder.
"What's the difference between Local Documents and my OmniPresence folder?"
Local Documents are files on your iPad that will not sync. Any files in this location can only be directly modified from the iPad.
Files in an OmniPresence folder automatically sync with the server. If you don't have an internet connection, previously-downloaded files are still accessible offline from your iPad, and any changes you make to these documents will be communicated with the server on your next sync. If you delete or otherwise remove a document from the OmniPresence folder on one device, it will be removed from your sync folder on other devices.View Article