Flexibits today updated its popular Fantastical calendar app with some notable changes and improvements, including cursor support for iPads.
With the release of iPadOS 13.4, Apple introduced mouse and trackpad support for its tablets, and Fantastical has been updated to take full advantage, enabling users to navigate the interface and edit calendar entries using a cursor.
Version 3.0.9 of the app also adds a new feature that shows users a preview of surrounding events and tasks when a new invitation is received, while weather is now shown on days that have no events when showing one or two days at a time in the list.
Other changes in this update for iPhone and iPad include:
Day and Week view can now show more hours at once
Tightened spacing in Month view to make more text visible
Event and task notifications now appear when Fantastical is active
Tapping date headers in the list of events in the watch app now shows the weather forecast
Improved sync responsiveness between iPhone and Apple Watch
Fixed an issue where the Apple Watch could get stuck syncing and would stop updating
Fixed an issue where Office 365 accounts wouldn't prompt for reauthorization if the login expires
Fixed an issue where the prompt to request G Suite sync access could cause some events to not be synced
Fixed an issue where long events could appear at the wrong time when the option to only show hours from day start to end is enabled
Fixed an issue where all-day tasks wouldn't appear correctly in Month view
Fixed a crash when trying to send changes to Todoist while offline
Various fixes and improvements
Fantastical version 3.0.9 is rolling out now as a universal binary for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, available on the App Store. The updated version for Mac also brings fixes and improvements, and can be downloaded directly from Flexibits or from the Mac App Store.
Fantastical runs on a subscription model: the fully featured app costs $4.99 per month or $39.99 per year. A feature-limited version of the app remains available for free, while Flexibits also offers a 14-day free trial for users who want to check out the full fat version.
Flexibits today is launching version 3.0 of its popular Fantastical calendar app, bringing a host of improvements across all platforms including Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. Along with all of the feature updates, Fantastical is transitioning to a premium subscription model that unlocks access across all devices and will provide continued feature additions and improvements on an ongoing basis.
With the new updates to the Fantastical apps, everything has been unified across the various platforms, so users will essentially find feature parity on all of their devices. An all-new design brings a full-screen calendar window, support for native OS features like Today widgets, action and share extensions, and Handoff, and much more.
I've had a chance to try out the new Fantastical, and I've come away impressed with the sleek look, slick management of significant amounts of information, and of course the natural language parsing Fantastical has been known for that lets you easily create events and tasks by simply typing a few words. Among the key additions in Fantastical 3.0:
- AccuWeather integration displays small weather icons in relevant places, bringing forecasts right into your calendar so you can see what the weather is going to be like for your various events, even taking into account event locations.
Fantastical for iPad with AccuWeather MinuteCast forecasts and RealFeel temperatures
- Calendar sets let you quickly manage your various calendars and tasks, allowing you to toggle multiple calendars with a single click and even change displayed calendars based on your location. Interesting Calendars is another new feature powered by SchedJoules that lets you subscribe to calendars for holidays, your favorite sports teams and TV shows, and more. Subscribing to a sports team, for example, will add entries for upcoming games to your calendar, and each game entry will update at its conclusion with box scores and even highlight links to let you easily follow your favorite team.
Fantastical for iPhone with day ticker view, "interesting calendars", and week view
- Meeting proposals are particularly useful for groups, letting you specify multiple time options in a calendar event invitation and have each invitee choose times that work for them. Once a unanimous time has been selected, the event can be automatically scheduled in on users' calendars, or it can be manually set by the organizer.
- Tasks now have a prominent home alongside calendars in Fantastical, and integration with Todoist, Google Tasks, and iCloud helps keep everything in sync.
Fantastical for Mac dark mode
Other features in Fantastical 3 include one-click creation of Zoom or Google Hangout meetings right from events, the ability to attach files and photos to scheduled events, event templates for one-touch creation of frequent events, and custom alert sounds for events.
Fantastical has long been available across Apple's various platforms, but each app has been a standalone purchase, and that's changing with Fantastical 3.0's shift to a subscription model. Subscriptions have long been controversial with users, but Flexibits has made a strong effort to justify the change by unifying everything under a single subscription that unlocks all apps and keeping pricing to a reasonable $4.99 per month or $39.99 per year. With the new subscription model, Flexibits will be able to deploy new features on a more regular basis rather than holding them to bundle for the next major paid update.
For those who don't want to pay for a subscription, there is a new free mode available for Fantastical, but many users will find it limited enough that they'll want to consider a paid subscription, for which there's a 14-day free trial. All users will also need to set up a free Flexibits account if they wish to sync calendars.
Fantastical 2 users who don't wish to convert to a subscription won't find themselves completely out of luck, as they'll be able to download the new apps and maintain access to all of the features and functionality they've had under Fantastical 2 on the platforms where they previously purchased it, plus a few of the new features as well as ongoing bug fixes and technical support.
Fantastical version 3.0 is rolling out now as an updated version of the existing Fantastical 2 iPhone app [App Store], which is now a universal binary supporting iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. (If you're an existing user of Fantastical 2 for iPad, you'll need to download the new universal version, as the iPad-only app is being discontinued, but the transition should be seamless.) The updated version of the Mac app can preferably be downloaded directly from Flexibits, but it's also available on the Mac App Store.
A year and a half ago, Flexibits branched out from its popular calendar app Fantastical to debut Cardhop, an intuitive contacts management app for macOS. Cardhop took Apple's Contacts to the next level, offering a smart input field that intelligently parses the text you're typing and figures out what you want to do. Customizable quick actions let you easily perform tasks related to your contacts, such as placing a phone call, sending an email, or contacting on Skype.
Flexibits is now bringing the power of Cardhop to iOS, today launching a universal iPhone and iPad app that offers many of the same features found in the macOS version. The intelligent natural language input is here, automatically detecting whether you're trying to search, add, or edit a contact based on what you've typed.
While Cardhop's contact cards will look very familiar to those who are used to Apple's native Contacts app, Cardhop's enhanced abilities make it much easier to manage and use the information stored on those cards.
Cardhop for iOS makes it easy to edit your contacts, as all you have to do is tap and hold on the piece of information you're looking to update. As on macOS, there are customizable action keys that give you one-tap access to whatever functions you're most interested in, and those action keys live right above your keyboard at all times.
Cardhop for iOS offers a choice of dark and light themes, as well as a combination theme that shows your lists and results in a dark color and individual contact cards in a light color. Siri Shortcuts are also supported in Cardhop, letting you automate various actions with your contacts and integrate those actions across apps.
Notes is another area Flexibits has chosen to emphasize with Cardhop. While Apple's Contacts app lets you take notes about people stored in your database, Cardhop makes the feature more prominent with a slide-up interface and distinctive background (yellow or gray depending on theme), encouraging you to save information about the people you meet for more meaningful future interactions.
Cardhop also supports personal business cards, letting you customize a card with the information you want to share and displaying it like a business card on your phone. With a QR code embedded on the card, it's easy to share just by letting others scan the code using the camera app on their phones.
The natural language input field in Cardhop supports English, French, Italian, German, Spanish, and Japanese, and if the app incorrectly parses your input, you can hit a flag icon to help the app learn what it should have done.
Finally, Cardhop for iOS supports directory lookups for Google Contacts, G Suite, and Exchange to let you quickly pull down contact information from your accounts on those services. A free update to Cardhop for macOS launching today also brings directory lookups to the desktop.
Flexibits is launching Cardhop for iOS as a paid universal app with no additional in-app purchases required. A limited-time launch sale will see Cardhop priced at $3.99, and once that expires the regular price will be $4.99.
Popular Mac calendar app Fantastical 2 was today updated to version 2.5, introducing a number of important changes that Fantastical users have been asking for.
The updated app includes support for sending and receiving time proposals on Exchange, iCloud, Google, and other CalDAV accounts, which means users that are sent an invite and need to offer up an alternate time can click the new option to suggest an updated time for an event, with a response sent directly to the event creator.
Support for sending Exchange responses that do not require responses from invitees has also been added.
Meetup.com integration is now included, so users are able to add a Meetup account to Fantastical to keep track of and respond to upcoming meetup events.
There's a new option for showing timed events that span for more than one day in the all-day section of the Day or Week views in Fantastical for Mac, and in month view, start and end times for these events will be displayed.
Fantastical users can now put the mini window in Split View full screen mode right alongside other apps, there's a new option to show the current calendar week in the Dock or menu bar icon, multiple calendars can be enabled or disabled at once, and there's a URL handler for changing calendar sets.
Pressing the option key while editing the start time of an event will keep the end time the same, and there are new keyboard shortcuts for quickly adjusting event start times and end times. Control + option + up/down arrows will adjust the start time of an event, while control + shift + up/down arrow will adjust the end time of an event.
Other new features include improved labeling for Exchange events where a response is not required, better labeling of custom anniversary dates from Contacts, and improved performance when loading subscriptions with hundreds or thousands of events.
Today's update is free for existing users. Fantastical for Mac can be downloaded from the Mac App Store for $49.99. [Direct Link]
Flexibits, the company that makes popular calendar app Fantastical, today launched a new contacts management app, Cardhop. Designed to be more than just a simple contacts app, Cardhop is interactive and is designed to be your communications hub, allowing you to email, message, and interface with your contacts from one central location.
When developing Cardhop, Flexibits aimed to do the same thing for contacts that it did for the calendar - turn an app that can be dull, unintuitive, and slow into a robust, streamlined app that offers a lot more utility.
Cardhop imports all of your contacts from your Mac (which are typically also synced with iOS devices using iCloud) and it provides an interface that makes it easy to search for an existing contact or add a new one using the same natural language parsing that's available in Fantastical.
A search for "Eric" for example, will bring up the card for a contact named Eric, with information like phone number, email address, birth date, home address, Twitter handle, Facebook profile, Skype username, and more. There are dozens of fields that can be added for each contact.
Entering a phrase like "Eric 867-5309 work" will automatically add the phone number you entered to Eric's contact card under the work heading, and similar phrases can be used to quickly update or remove information for all contacts. Added information will sync to the default Apple Contacts app.
If you start typing a name that's not already in your contacts list, Cardhop will automatically add a new entry with the information. Groups of contacts are also supported, so you can create a group like "work" to automatically send an email or a message to everyone you work with.
Cardhop's most useful feature is perhaps its quick actions. Every contact card in Cardhop features four customizable quick action buttons for interacting with contacts and performing tasks like placing a call, sending a tweet, or sending an email. The following quick actions are available: Call, Copy, Directions, Email, FaceTime, FaceTime Audio, Large Type, Message, Skype, Telegram, Twitter, URL, and VoIP.
Clicking on one of the quick action buttons performs the task assigned to the button, but typing a quick action like "Skype Eric" or "Message Eric" also works. When using the call feature, there's also an option to place the call on your iPhone from your Mac using Bluetooth. Cardhop has the potential to save time in a workflow because it automates tasks that would normally take several clicks.
Cardhop also takes advantage of the underused "note" feature available in the default Contacts app, making a notes section front and center for each contact in the app. Notes can be used to add details about contacts that you want to remember, leading to richer interactions.
"Until now, contacts apps were basically boring databases," said Michael Simmons, Co-founder of Flexibits. "Cardhop is an entirely different approach and we think it's going to simplify and truly change the way people think about and interact with their contacts."