Sunrise, the immensely popular calendar app for Android and iOS, was the closest thing to a consensus pick you’ll find in the tech world. Numerous publications, ours included, named it the best calendar app for any mobile platform and thus the news that Microsoft, which acquired Sunrise in 2015, was shuttering the client was met with a collective harrumph.
As a person who has never relied on a calendar app, the loss of Sunrise impacted me less than others, but even I knew the significance. When Sunrise first joined the Google Play Store in 2014, I raced to download it, to see what all my iPhone toting friends were hollering about. It didn’t change my life, but I knew immediately why people were taken by it. While Sunrise can never be fully replaced, the good news is the App Store and Google Play Store are loaded with great calendar apps to help ease the transition to a Sunrise-less world.
Here are the five best options, starting with the app the Sunrise team is now putting all its efforts into:
Much of the team behind Sunrise has moved on to work on Microsoft’s own Outlook app, and they’re working to bring many of Sunrise’s most popular features along with them. While not singularly a calendar app, Outlook is one of the best email and calendar clients on the App Store and Google Play. For Sunrise diehards, it’s the one to pay attention to over the next year. It very well could become a worthy successor if the team is able to replicate the magic a second time.
With the departure of Sunrise, the app considered by many to be the best calendar client for iOS is Fantastical 2. If you can get past its hefty price tag, Fantastical 2 offers a host of useful features like the ability to add events and reminders with natural language, the distinct DayTicker view which makes it easy to see your daily schedule and events and, of course, a gorgeous design.
One of Android’s most popular options, SolCalendar offers the customary great design you’d want from a top calendar app but also adds in a few features that make it stand out. Most often noted is the app’s real time weather information, which will help you when planning events. You can also use stickers to adorn special events on your calendar and see the days ahead in various view modes. It works with numerous other calendars including Google Calendar, and any that supports CalDAV and, an absolute necessity on Android, has great widget support.
From the makers of Any.do, Cal is a calendar app that hopes to help its users focus and find the time for everything in their lives, whether it be work, family or personal time. It’s set up as a visual timeline, and is considered one of the best designed calendar apps on the market, letting users plan out their days and months in a clear timeline so no day feels like a jumbled mess. It’s intuitive and easy to use, so if you’re someone who needs to wrangle your responsibilities but don’t want to bogged down with an app that has a serious learning curve, check out Cal.
UpTo takes the usual calendar app and puts an interesting spin on it. It works in two layers, the first being your normal, everyday calendar and the second being a selection of calendars you can follow based on your location, likes and interests. Not only can you keep your daily life organized like with any other calendar app, but now you can also integrate various interests, from sports teams to TV shows to concerts, into that calendar without having to manually enter in an event. It’s a great idea, and one that separates UpTo from the pack.