With August already coming to an end, so is the time for one of our picks for must-have apps. While Sunrise was a great and easy-to-use Calendar App, its acquisition by Microsoft has left its users out in the cold. While the app will continue functioning, it will not receive any updates after August. This leaves Sunrise users with two options, either stick with Sunrise, or find another great calendar app. Any quick Google search for Best iOS Calendar App will yield two options, either Fantastical 2 ($2.99) or Calendars 5 (Free).
While Fantastical 2 seems to be the best paid calendar app, Calendars 5 is a great alternative to Sunrise. Calendars 5 offers the same features we have come to love like the Repeat option for recurring events, the myriad choices for timed reminders before the events starts, and the cross-syncing between devices. Another great feature about Calendars 5 is that once your calendar is synced, notification will come in for events even if you are not connected to Wi-Fi. Even though we strongly recommended Sunrise, there was a couple times where we missed event reminders simply because the phone in use was not connected to Wi-Fi, and for some people this might have been the case too. No app is without fault though, and here we will dive in to find Calendar 5’s best and worst features.
Upon first opening the app, this is the first view that the user sees. There are many different views to choose from, and while this is good, at first glance it can be intimidating. As seen above, there are Day, Week, Month, and Year views available. Apart from these view categories, the bottom slider also provides a weekly view of the user’s calendar. As if this were not enough the left-hand column provides a time view as each day goes by. While it may seem daunting at first, these views actually provide the user with many great options. The design can be cleaned up for a bit more simplicity, but once over the learning curve, these variety of views are great to use.
Adding an event on Calendars 5 is as easy as clicking the + button atop the screen or simply long-pressing the calendar view. This will bring up this new screen which will present many more options.
Like Sunrise, the ability to add reminders before the event is present, but the design (again) could be cleaned up a bit more.
Going further down, Calendars 5 has another row of features at the bottom.
It provides a location of the meeting, repetition options, attendees, and the ability to add a description. Like we said in our review of Sunrise, the ability to add recurring events is great especially for students who can input their schedules with ease. Another great addition, and something that Sunrise lacked, is the ability to notify without being connected to the internet. So if you use Calendar 5 on something like a Wi-Fi only tablet, getting reminded of your important events will not be a problem.
All in all, Calendar 5 is a great replacement for Sunrise. While Fantastical might be the de-facto calendar app for some people, Calendar 5 is the best Sunrise replacement, and just like Sunrise, it’s free of charge.