15 Productivity Tools and Apps You'll Want to Check Out In 2020

By Hazel Pan May 08, 2020

Here’s a question a lot of us have been wondering about for a while: does working remotely actually help teams become more productive or does the distance only open the floodgates to more distractions and procrastination?

According to some studies, it depends.

In one study cited by the Harvard Business Review, employees who worked from home actually increased their productivity by 4.4%. This added up to $1.3 billion of annual value to the U.S. economy. In another study, employees who worked from home even increased their productivity by as much as 13%.

And although these are all good numbers, the risks for getting distracted are still present. So, as a business owner, how can you ensure that your remote team stays productive?

The answer, based on further results from the same study, is in making sure that your whole company, including your remote team, all use the same software. As the study found, managers who required their remote employees to use the same set of tools as the rest of the company showed a further 3% increase in productivity.

So to that end, which software should you use to help you do that in 2020?

Below, we've put together a list of 15 great productivity tools and apps that you don't want to miss out on this year, as well as their most noteworthy features and prices, so that you know exactly what you're dealing with.

Let's dive in!

Top 15 Productivity Tools and Apps In 2020

1. Infinity

Infinity Productivity Tool

Infinity is a customizable project management tool that you can use to manage your team’s productivity. The great thing about it is that you can start with something as simple as a checklist, then customize your workspace to handle bigger, more complex operations when needed. 

From content calendars and sales CRMs, to product development and even personal habit trackers, you can create any type of process you need within Infinity, and then use different filters to arrange and display the data you need. You can also display your items in multiple views, as they like to call them, including Calendar, Column, List, Kanban, and Gantt chart. 

If you don't want to start working from scratch, you'll be glad to hear that Infinity also has a wide range of project management templates that you can use right away. It is available for web, iOS, and Android, so teams can stay in sync across all devices.

Infinity Features:

  • Social Media Calendar
  • Project Tracker
  • Growth Experiments
  • Event Planning
  • Marketing Campaign
  • Habit Tracker
  • Marketing Agency Client
  • Business Roadmap
  • Workout Planner
  • Finances Tracker
  • Sales CRM
  • Marketing Management
  • Employee Onboarding
  • Employee Database
  • Video Production
  • Content Calendar
  • Course Planning
  • My Freelance Business
  • Book Tracker
  • Product Management
  • Meetings Calendar
  • Product Roadmap
  • Agile Development
  • Order Tracker


Starts at $149 for a 10-member team's lifetime access.

2. Zapier

Zapier Productivity App

Zapier is a productivity app that allows you to automate repetitive tasks. For example, you can set up a “Zap” to automatically send you SMS notifications when you receive emails only from senders that you’ve tagged as important. This frees you from having to manually check your email each time, and possibly get distracted by non-work related messages. 

If you want to create a Zap for sending automated birthday and holiday greetings, you can definitely do that, too!

These are just a few examples of what you can do with Zapier, but don’t think that there’s not more to this cool app. In fact, Zapier lets you connect over 2,000 applications, so you can make a Zap for almost anything—from customer feedback, time tracking, ecommerce apps, to invoicing, and beyond. Once you’ve created a Zap, this program will continue to run automatically unless you turn it off. 

Today, Zapier continues to add apps and Zaps to their library. This means there is almost no limit to the amount of workflows and processes you can automate, and what your resourcefulness can dream up. 

Zapier Features:

  • Process Mapping & Automation
  • Routine Task Automation
  • Workflow Automation
  • Customizable Workflows
  • Triggered Actions
  • Trigger Dependencies
  • Action Dependencies
  • Create Custom Apps (Scheduling, Time Tracking, Ecommerce, Project Management, etc.)
  • Third-Party App Integrations
  • Multiple Accounts Management


Zapier’s paid plan starts at $20 per month. Free account available.

3. Forest

Forest Productivity App

Forest is a productivity app that lets you save trees while keeping you focused on your tasks.

At first glance, the app functions like a Pomodoro timer, enabling the user to go on concentrated sprints. From here, the app uses a unique mechanism to keep its users focused instead of eventually succumbing to distractions. 

First, for every focused sprint you complete, you can grow plants in the app’s virtual forest. Hence, the more productive you are, the more plants your virtual forest will have. If you open a banned app during a focused sprint, your plant will die. To up the ante, you’ll actually see images of your plants flourish as you keep your focus timer going. And if you fail, you’ll also see your plants wilt.

There are in-app purchases, such as different plant species (mostly fictional and artistic) that you can either buy with real cash or save up for using the app’s virtual coins (the reward you get for completing focused sprints).

As an additional incentive—and perhaps its most noteworthy feature—you can convert your virtual coins into credits that you can use to plant real trees. The developers of the app are partnered with various environmental groups in Africa, and they release updates of their tree planting work, so you’ll get to see where your contribution goes.

If you want to measure your team’s productivity, the PRO plan gives you access to a team room. This comes with a member leaderboard, so you’ll get to see everyone’s productivity ranked.

Forest Features:

  • Screen Time Tracker
  • Focused Time Distribution Tracker
  • Multi-device Syncing
  • Automatic Data Syncing
  • Customizable Whitelist
  • Customizable Tags
  • Categorizable Tags
  • Various Background Noise
  • Notification & Alerts
  • Forest Timeline (Daily, Weekly, Monthly, Yearly)
  • Detailed Time Distribution Statistics
  • Plant Real Trees in The PRO Version
  • Available for iOS and Android Devices 


Forest is free to use, but has an optional Pro version which starts at $1.99.

4. Ora

Ora Productivity Tool

Ora is a productivity app that comes with cute cartoon icons, gradient backgrounds, and candy-colored UI palettes that you can customize to make your workstation fun and engaging. In short: it’s definitely not your standard-looking productivity tool.

Ora comes with Kanban, Checklist, Table, Calendar, and Timeline view, and it also has built-in reporting and a time tracker, so you can review your resources and time it took to complete your tasks. 

If you are overwhelmed with too many functions and want to tone your workspace down, you can simply toggle specific features on and off depending on what you need.

Ora Features:

  • Organizable Folders, Projects, and Workspaces
  • Filter Projects by Due Date or Other Tags
  • Automatic Sync of Calendar Reminders
  • Multiple Project Views
  • File Attachment
  • Hierarchical Tasks
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Blocking Tasks
  • Actionable Checklists
  • Viewing Group Plan assigned/claimed tasks
  • Tasks Time Tracker
  • Overtime Detection
  • Editable Descriptions for timers
  • Time Spent Tracker for Tasks/Projects/Labels
  • Built-in Messaging Platform
  • Mention team members
  • Adding Folders
  • Turn Emails into Tasks
  • Team Email Notifications
  • Link Ora Projects to Slack/Zendesk
  • Built-in Epics, Sprints, Story Points, and Reports 
  • Customizable Theme (Dark Mode)


Ora’s paid plan starts at $4.33 per month. Free account available.

5. Plutio

Plutio Productivity App

Plutio is a productivity app designed for freelancers and small businesses. The idea behind Plutio is to provide you with a single workspace that can handle most—if not all—of the processes related to a small business.

You can create a checklist, add team members, and assign tasks, and thanks to a built-in timer, you can monitor each team members’ productivity. Plutio’s also offers an integrated calendar that lets you set deadlines and reminders.

However, what separates Plutio from similar apps is its capacity to handle client CRM and payments. From within the platform, you can create proposals, send invoices, and accept payments. You also get a CRM for saving client details and a communication system that you can make accessible only to them.

Given all of this together, you have a centralized, single workspace for handling almost all aspects of your business—your employees, their work productivity, and your clients.

Plutio Features:

  • Project Management
  • Task Tracking
  • Scheduling
  • Add Team Members
  • Assign Tasks
  • Timesheet Tracker
  • Built-in Invoicing
  • Paypal & Stripe Integration
  • Create Proposals/Contracts
  • Drag-and-Drop Editor
  • Built-in Inbox and Live Chat
  • Email Integration
  • Available for Windows & Mac
  • Available for iOS & Android devices


Plutio doesn’t have a free version, but they do offer a 14-day trial. Paid plans start at $15 per month.

6. Basecamp

Basecamp Productivity App

Basecamp is an all-in-one project management and productivity app whose goal is to help remote teams manage their work and collaborate together.

Thanks to Basecamp’s Automatic Check-In feature, you can automate your daily progress reviews and help the team stay informed at all times about what everyone else has been doing. Another feature, called Campfires, lets you communicate with your teammates in real-time through chat.

With Basecamp, you also get access to features such as message boards, to-do lists, calendar scheduling, and file sharing. And although the app's interface looks a little cluttered at first glance, once you’re used to it, you’ll realize just how comprehensive this productivity app is.

Overall, from a small startup to a medium enterprise, this productivity app will have everything you’re going to need to run a remote business.

Basecamp Features:

  • Project Management
  • Team Management
  • Team Collaboration
  • Team Communication
  • To-Do Checklists
  • Custom Project Templates
  • Project Scheduling
  • Organize Discussions/Events/Meetings
  • Automatic Check-Ins for Team Members
  • Built-in Message Board for Announcements
  • Realtime Chat
  • File and Documents Attachments
  • Unlimited Projects
  • Unlimited Users
  • Unlimited Clients
  • 500GB Storage Space
  • Built-in Company HQ
  • Optional Team/Client Permission


Plans start at $99 per month.

7. Todoist

Todoist Productivity App

Todoist is a productivity app with a clean, straightforward interface. It’s like Google Tasks, Google Calendar, and Notion in one.

At first glance, Todoist’s checklist and task hierarchy structure is reminiscent of Google Tasks, while its colors and calendar look like a page out of Google Calendar’s own interface. Meanwhile, the capability to organize nested notes and add icons will remind you of Notion.

However, this is where similarities end, as Todoist has some unique features of its own. Aside from the essential scheduling, tags, labeling, and color coding features, Todoist uses something called “Todoist Karma”. For every task you complete and productivity streaks that you maintain, Todoist awards you with points that you can use to level up your karma.

You can set these Karma goals yourself and review your daily and monthly progress via Todoist’s visual productivity tracker.

Todoist Features:

  • Task Management
  • Project Management
  • Tags and Label Categorization
  • Tasks & Sub-Tasks
  • Nested Notes
  • Tasks Notifications and Reminders
  • Offline Mode
  • Multi-Device Syncing
  • Google Calendar Syncing
  • Third-Party App Integration
  • Tasks & Projects Comment Threads
  • File Management
  • Shared Team Inbox
  • Admin and Member Roles
  • Activity Log
  • Priorities/Completed Tasks
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Karma Reward Point System
  • Milestone Tracker
  • Daily, Weekly, and Monthly Progress Report
  • Productivity Trend Chart
  • Automatic Backup
  • Turn Emails into Tasks
  • Custom Project Templates
  • Available on Windows & Mac
  • Available on iOS & Android devices


Todoist paid plans start at $3 per month. Free plan also available.

8. Zoho Sprints

Zoho Sprints Productivity App

Zoho Sprints is an agile project management tool under Zoho’s larger business suite, that makes for a great productivity app for product development or launch teams.

Though it looks simple, it is equipped with Zoho’s signature breadth of business-ready features, and is specifically designed for planning and delivering product launches as fast and possible.

You can create custom workflows using Zoho Sprint’s drag-and-drop planning tools, and customize anything from fields, layouts, and even item type. You can also access ready-made project templates so you don’t have to create common workflows from scratch each time.

Zoho Sprints gives you Backlog, Board, Epic, and Bug Tracking views. Its reporting features lets you zoom in on tasks you need to focus on, or zoom out to get a bird’s eye view of your overall progress as it relates to your roadmap.

You can also schedule meetings and get real-time activity feeds so you can stay aware about what everyone else in the team is working on. Integrate it with any third-party app you use so you can maintain data across all the applications that you need.

Zoho Sprints:

  • Stories/Tasks/Bug Management
  • 100GB Storage Space
  • Task Categorization
  • Milestone Tracker
  • Third-Party App Integration
  • Add User Stories
  • Add Estimation Points
  • Schedule Discussions/Meetings
  • Built-In Timesheet
  • Built-In Scrum Board
  • Customizable Sidebar
  • Sprint Activities Summary
  • Backlog Metrics
  • Planned vs Actual Graphs, and more
  • Velocity Charts
  • Cumulative Flow Diagrams
  • Burn-up and Burn-down Reports
  • Custom Project Templates
  • Custom Layout Fields
  • API Available
  • Available on iOS & Android devices


Zoho Sprints paid plans start at $10 per month. Free plan is also available.

9. Wrike

Wrike Productivity Tool

Wrike is a cloud-based productivity app that comes with a simple, clean interface that belies the variety of things you can use it for.

First off, Wrike offers all the essential views that can help you address any type of workflow or project, including Calendar, Board, Nested List/Checklist/To-do List, Timeline, and even Gantt chart view. 

Aside from editing Wrike’s dashboard, adding, or removing any widgets as you need them, you can also organize your projects into different categories and subdivide them further into tasks. On top of this, you get access to a built-in inbox, so you don’t have to open a separate emailing app anymore.

Additionally, you can then customize the names of your to-do items and arrange them into nested hierarchies to help you prioritize the right goals. Finally, if you’re on the Wrike for Marketers and Wrike for Marketers Enterprise plans, you can get access to Wrike Proof, which is Wrike’s built-in image review tool.

Wrike Features:

  • Project Management
  • Task Tracking
  • Assigning Tasks
  • Rescheduling Tasks
  • Customizable Descriptions for Tasks
  • Tasks & Project Commenting
  • Time Tracker
  • Notifications & Alerts
  • File Attachment
  • Third-Party App Integration
  • Customizable Dashboards
  • Customizable Forms
  • Different Views (Board, Gantt Chart, Workload)
  • Built-in Messaging Platform
  • Mention Team Members
  • Dynamic Request Forms
  • Custom Workflows
  • Built-in Proof Tool
  • Real-time Project Status/Report
  • Shareable Reports
  • Available on Windows & Mac
  • Available on iOS & Android devices


Wrike’s paid plan which starts at $9.80 per month.

10. Backlog

Backlog Productivity Tool

Backlog is a productivity app specifically designed for coding teams, and as such, it is fully equipped to handle things such as:

  • Project management
  • Bug tracking
  • Backlog issues
  • Wikis
  • Git

It also comes with for Kanban, Checklists, and Gantt chart view, but one of Backlog's most important features for developers is its capacity to track and store code version changes

Backlog records commits and pull requests, so you can review and leave comments, plus you can even compare code changes over each other, so it's easier to decide whether to push a new version live or to restore an old one.

Backlog Features:

  • Project Management
  • Task Tracking 
  • Assigning Tasks
  • Scheduling Tasks/Projects
  • Tasks & Projects Comments
  • Hierarchical Tasks
  • Add New Team Members
  • Built-in Messaging Platform
  • Personalized Watchlists
  • Checklists
  • Sub-tasks
  • Real-time Project Status
  • Project Updates History
  • Push Notifications & alerts
  • File Sharing
  • Drag-and-drop File Attachment
  • Cloud Integration
  • SVN and Git repositories
  • Pull & Merge Requests
  • Gantt Charts
  • Personalized Wikis
  • Built-in Bug Tracker
  • Burn-down Charts
  • Customizable Categories
  • Jira/Redmine Integration
  • Available on Windows, Mac, & Linux
  • Available on iOS & Android devices


Backlog paid plans start at $35 per month. Free plan is also available.

11. Habitica 

Habitica Productivity App

Similar to Forest, Habitica is also one of the more creative productivity apps on this list, and you’ll see why in a moment.

For starters, this app comes with the essentials: lists, boards, kanban views, recurring tasks, and more. But apart from these, Habitica has something that most of the other apps on this list don't have: overt gamification.

Set in a video game environment, each user has a character that completes tasks as “quests,” which then yields rewards that allow them to “level up” their character and buy items.

They can also compete or band together with their friends to explore the variety of character changes they can make when leveling up, and items they can collect. This makes Habitica one colorful, creative productivity app that could make accomplishing tasks more fun and even a little addictive. 

Habitica Features:

  • Task Management
  • Label Management
  • Web & Mobile Ready
  • Task Sorting
  • Tags Management
  • Tags Filtering
  • Filtering Tasks by Due/Dated/Weak/Strong
  • Viewing Completed To-Dos
  • Task Reminders
  • Once-A-Day Reminders
  • Custom Rewards Management
  • Team Task Board
  • Task Assignment
  • Social Integration


Habitica paid plans start at $4.99 per month. Free plan available.

12. Microsoft To Do

Microsoft To Do Productivity App

Microsoft To Do is a free app that you can use to manage tasks and monitor productivity.

The app works pretty straightforward, and is a great alternative for users that crave a clean, simple interface that does a few things well, versus other apps with plenty of clutter and a learning curve.

You’ll get a simple task list, icons, tags, and labels to help you organize, and seamless integration with other apps that you use. If your team uses Microsoft Office for your work, then Microsoft To Do should work even better with your suite. You can easily connect it with your calendar so you’ll get recurring reminders. 

You can also connect with your Outlook email or even Gmail so you can flag your relevant emails and turn them into actionable to-dos. 

Microsoft To Do Features:

  • Microsoft Outlook Integration
  • Multiple Device Syncing
  • Microsoft Office 365 Integration
  • Intelligent Suggestions for Daily Tasks
  • Team Collaboration
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Due Dates
  • Pending Task Reminders
  • Note Taking
  • File Attachment
  • Checklists
  • Sharing Permission
  • Access Permission
  • Available for iPhone, Android, Windows 10, and Web



13. Google Task

Google Task Productivity App

Google Task is another simple alternative for those who just want to stay productive by tracking and completing tasks one at a time.

Like Microsoft To Do’s relationship with its own suite, Google Tasks gives you easy integration with its own Google Suite of apps. The app comes with Gmail, so it’s quick and easy for you to flag emails and turn them into tasks. You can also set deadlines and reminders, then integrate them with your Google Calendar. 

Google Task is also accessible in the Google Docs interface, so if you’re writing an article or researching a project, you can track any other ideas that you get along the way, and set a reminder to follow through. All of these can sync seamlessly across multiple devices.

This productivity tool is incredibly simple to use, and you can create main lists, add tasks, and subtasks. However, it is worth mentioning that it’s not color-coded, does not have tags or labeling, and you can’t collaborate live with your team.

However, if you’re sold on its simplicity and free usage, there are various workarounds to manage a team with this app, which you can easily find tutorials for online. 

Google Task Features:

  • Checklists
  • Sub-Tasks
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Deadline Setting
  • Google Suite Integration
  • Capture Tasks From Right Inside Gmail
  • Automatic Sync of Calendar Reminders
  • Editable Descriptions for Tasks and Sub-Tasks
  • Turn Emails Into Tasks
  • Track Due Dates
  • Task Notifications
  • Multiple Device Syncing
  • Available on Web, Android, and iOS



14. Omnifocus 

Omnifocus Productivity App

Omnifocus has a big promise—to help you “accomplish more every day”.

It is a powerful and customizable productivity app that promises to be the “upgrade” that your brain needs. It is also iOS exclusive, and is therefore fully optimized to work well with their suite. Omnifocus’s goal is to help users stay productive by removing overwhelming information, so plenty of its features are designed to help manage mental clutter.

This includes task forecasting, where the app shows your daily tasks only by priority, and automatically reminds you when you need to switch. It also helps you categorize similar tasks together so they’re easier to accomplish.

The built-in Omnifucus sharing menu also makes it conveniently easy to capture data from any source and share it with the Omnifocus interface. This way, you can just take something important from anywhere, be it a Google search or an email, and automatically turn it into a task without having to remember all the details yourself. Omnifocus will do that for you when it’s time to.

“Flexible Inspectors” are Omnifocus’s version of Airtable blocks. These are the drag and drop code blocks that contain functions you can mix and match to create your own custom workflow.

You also get what’s called a “Focus Mode,” where the app helps you to focus only on your priority tasks first. Once completed, only then will you get to see others on your list. This keeps you from getting distracted by lower priority tasks.

Omnifocus Features:

  • Customizable Functions
  • Focus Mode
  • Task Forecasting
  • Data Visualization
  • To-Do list View
  • Inbox & Projects
  • Tags, Flags, Labeling
  • Calendar Integration
  • Encrypted Sync
  • Notifications & Alerts
  • Data Export
  • Spotlight Search
  • Hardware Keyboard Shortcuts
  • Location-based Alerts
  • Multiple Windows on iOS 13
  • Custom Columns
  • Custom Perspectives
  • AppleScript Support


Costs $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year. Web add-on at $4.99 per month or $49.99 per year.

15. ClickUp

ClickUp Productivity App

ClickUp is a powerful app that provides almost everything any workplace would need—from team communication and productivity, to project management and progress reports.

You can create tasks and subtasks on a card, set a deadline, and get in touch with your team using ClickUp’s built-in Inbox and Live Team Chat. Since it has plenty of functionalities, ClickUp can have a bit of a learning curve. But once you get used to it, it becomes worth it. 

While you can, of course, create custom workflows from scratch, ClickUp is also equipped with various, most commonly used project templates that you can reuse for other projects, such as the usual content management, sales process, customer support tracking, and the like. 

ClickUp Features:

  • Task Management
  • Assigning Tasks
  • Recurring Tasks
  • Hierarchical Tasks
  • Tasks Time Tracker
  • Adding Time Estimates
  • Filter, Sort, & Search Tasks
  • Real-time Project Status/Report
  • Turn Emails into Tasks
  • Tasks & Projects Comments
  • Built-in Inbox and Live Chat
  • Customizable Status Templates
  • Customizable Sidebar
  • Checklists
  • Sub-tasks
  • Tags
  • Draft Tasks
  • People Sidebar
  • Custom Themes
  • Dark Mode Available
  • Drag-and-Drop Integration
  • Third-Party App Integration
  • Notifications & Alerts
  • Built-in Messaging Platform
  • Shareable Files/Documents
  • Personalized Wikis/Knowledge Base
  • Chrome Extension Available
  • Different Views Available
  • Gantt Charts
  • Workload Charts
  • Google Sheets/Airtable Integration
  • Automatic Sync of Calendar Reminders
  • Rescheduling Reminders
  • Built-in Screen Recorder
  • Offline Mode Integration
  • Available on Windows, Mac, & Linux
  • Available on iOS & Android devices


ClickUp paid plans start at $5 per month.


Now that you have a list of potential apps to choose from, along with their noteworthy features, it might be easier for you to pick the one (or more of them!) that you think match your working style and needs best.

And if you’re thinking of starting with something simple, but anticipate your needs to grow more complex with time, we really think Infinity would be a great fit for you. Infinity is designed to handle something as straightforward as task lists, but since you can customize it to handle more functions as the need arises, you get the best of both worlds. 

Best of all, Infinity is open for lifetime membership at the moment, so for a one-time price, you’ll get features that you would need to pay a premium for in other apps.

It’s not even difficult to set up! You can see how easy it is to navigate Infinity in the video below:

And that's it for our latest SaaS roundup. Should you spot anything amiss, or just want to say hi, don't forget to tag @startinfinity and @MissPanWriter while you're at it!

Hazel Pan
Hazel Pan
Hazel Pan is a copywriter and content marketing strategist for SaaS & e-commerce. Despite her chronic addiction to online courses, newsletters, and swipe files, she finds time to bike around. She likes writing case studies featuring entrepreneurs, their ideas, and business stories.

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