Looking for the best iPhone apps to keep your meetings and events organized and up to date? While the built-in iPhone calendar app is clean and functional, it's not the right calendar app for everyone. That's where the App Store comes in. There are several really great calendar replacement apps, and they can all tie into the same iOS calendar database, so all of your appointments, events, birthdays, and more will "just work". But which alternative calendar apps for iPhone are the absolute best? And more important, which one is the best choice for you?
Fantastical by Flexibits has been one of my absolute favorite alternative calendar apps as long as I can remember. Fantastical 2 now brings the best of what Flexibits has to offer to Reminders as well. Instead of just accessing and managing your calendar, you can also manage your reminders in the same place. From gestures to natural language support to the beautifully designed interface, Fantastical 2 is the entire package. Other features include custom notifications for several event types, snooze options, iCloud invitation support, TextExpander integration, and much more. Fantastical supports iCloud, Google Calendar, Exchange, and more.
For a beautifully designed calendar app that's close to what Apple provided pre-iOS 7, but better, look no further than Fantastical 2.
Sunrise Calendar supports Gmail, iCloud, and Exchange calendars. Not only that, you can also choose to link up your Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare. You can then manage all your Facebook and personal events in one place. Foursquare checkins show up in your calendar as well so you have one main feed for everything. Sunrise Calendar is one of the very few options that handles event sharing and invites properly through iCloud as well. If that's important to you, it's a solid bet. Oh, and did we mention the interface and design is gorgeous too?
If you want all the things social to feed into your calendar, Sunrise does a beautiful job of managing everything all in one place without overdoing it.
You'll be hard pressed to find any calendar and task app that is as versatile, customizable, and feature packed as Pocket Informant. Not only does Pocket Informant function as a replacement calendar app, it's essentially a personal assistant in the palm of your hand. Pocket Informant features four calendar views, a consolidated Today View that gives a quick overview of your entire day, built-in weather support, support for tasks, and so much more. Since Pocket Informant can pull from iOS calendars and Reminders, it can support Exchange and many other calendar types including iCloud and Google.
If you want complete control over your calendar and a slight learning curve doesn't scare you, Pocket Informant is what you want.
Calendars 5 by Readdle can not only manage your Calendar, but your reminders and tasks as well. It also supports natural language input for event creation. Calendars 5 is also one of the few options that is a universal download for both iPhone and iPad, which gives you a little more bang for your buck. You can sync local calendars as well as Google calendars with Calendars 5. What draws my attention to Calendars 5 the most are the unique view options. The week view in particular is incredibly useful and informative, which anyone with lots of appointments will greatly appreciate.
If you have a jam packed calendar and need view options that show information in a reliable and informative way, check out Calendars 5 by Readdle.
UpTo Calendar can tie into all your local calendars or with Google, iCloud, and Outlook. However, what makes UpTo unique is that you can subscribe to tons of calendars that UpTo curates for you. These calendars are the "back layer" of UpTo and include things like following your favorite sports teams so you never miss a game, checking out local concerts, different holiday calendars around the world, and tons more. If you want to view subscribed calendars, just use pinch gestures to expand and collapse the subscribed layer. This way recreation and entertainment don't get in the way of your personal calendars. UpTo Calendar is also designed tastefully and should be easy enough to use for almost anyone.
For a calendar that is just as much fun as it is productive, give UpTo Calendar a go.
Cal by Any.do ties in nicely with the overall design of iOS as well as with Any.do Tasks. One unique thing that Cal does is plot out free time in between events. The main agenda view is reminiscent of the default Calendar app pre-iOS 7 as well so it won't be as overwhelming to new users. Cal also supports natural language input and automatically searches for physical locations in your events to attach. All of these factors make it one of the easiest calendar apps to learn and use.
If you don't need tons of extra features and want something that just works, or you're already an Any.do user, Cal is worth a try.
These are our absolute favorite calendar apps. Not only do a lot of these provide more functionality, they can also tie into all the services we care about most. If you use one of the above, let us know why you prefer it over other options. If you use something different, make sure you let us know that too!
Note: Originally published, October 2013. Updated, August 2014.