Introducing OmniFocus 2 for iPad!

by Ken Case on September 17, 2014

How times change! When we introduced OmniFocus for iPad in the Summer of 2010, it was widely considered to have the best, most modern design of the three OmniFocus editions. So much so that when we set about building OmniFocus 2 for Mac, our top priority was to bring the design lessons we’d learned from the iPad app back to the Mac app.

But then Apple inspired us with iOS 7, and our priorities changed. We completely redesigned OmniFocus 2 for iPhone, then OmniFocus 2 for Mac. We started getting rave reviews for these new designs—and now, instead of constantly getting questions about how soon we would make the other editions match OmniFocus for iPad, those questions flipped to ask when we were going to update the iPad app to match the new designs in the other apps.

I’m very pleased to announce that the long wait is over—that (for the first time!) all three editions of OmniFocus have the same design language:

Screenshot of the Forecast perspective

Screenshot of the editor

Beyond its new design, OmniFocus 2 for iPad offers two great new iOS 8 extensions, interactive notifications so you can immediately complete or snooze a reminder, improved searching, and background syncing. And, of course, all of the great features pioneered in the original iPad app, such as the built-in Forecast and Review perspectives.

It’s a great upgrade—but we didn’t stop there! On the Mac, one of the features we offer in the Pro version of OmniFocus 2 is the ability to go beyond the built-in perspectives by creating your own custom perspectives. Customers have often asked if we would ever provide similar capabilities for iOS, and I’m pleased to share that we’ve finally done just that, in the optional Pro upgrade to OmniFocus 2 for iPad:

Screenshot of the Perspective editor

With Pro, you can create your own combinations of view settings, searches, and filters to see your work in exactly the right way. You can also arrange the top-level sidebar however you like, for quick access to your favorite perspectives.

Whether or not Pro is for you, we know you’ll enjoy all of the other new features OmniFocus 2 has to offer! OmniFocus 2 is now available for just $29.99, and its Pro upgrade is now available as an optional in-app purchase for $19.99.

For those of you who purchased the first version of OmniFocus for iPad, we have a very special deal: we appreciate the support you’ve given us through the years, and we’re showing our appreciation in a very concrete way by giving you the $19.99 Pro upgrade for free when you purchase version 2. Thank you for your support through the years!

New OmniFocus extensions for iOS 8

by Ken Case on September 17, 2014

It’s hard to believe that it’s only been three months since Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference. We had just finished shipping OmniFocus 2.0 for Mac—a huge release for us—and suddenly we were on the receiving end of a firehose of information from Apple about iOS 8 and Yosemite and Swift. All three were incredibly exciting, but the one which would immediately change our app development was iOS 8.

With iOS 8, Apple gave us new ways to interact with the operating system and with other apps. For the first time ever, we could provide extensions which could run inside other apps. We could add Today extensions to Notification Center. We could build new Sharing options to easily capture content shared by other apps. We could share documents between apps without making extra copies that get out of date. And even in places where our code wasn’t running, we now had more flexibility—like the ability to provide interactive notifications with multiple choices. All that and much more. Far more than we had time to adopt in one summer—particularly since we also had two major app upgrades to ship for iPad: OmniFocus 2 and OmniGraffle 2.

Fast forward a few (very busy!) months, and iOS 8 is finally right around the corner—and the iPad and iPhone editions of OmniFocus 2 are both ready with two great new extensions. The new OmniFocus Sharing extension will let you capture content from Safari and other apps, and with the new OmniFocus Today extension it’s easier than ever to get a grip on your day’s commitments:

Screenshot of the Today extension on iPhone

These new extensions are just a taste of what’s now possible with iOS 8. I’m looking forward to doing even more with extensions in our apps—and I’m also looking forward to seeing what other developers have been cooking up over the summer!

Just a short bit about a few apps and iOS 8

by Derek R. on September 12, 2014

It’s been a few months since we pulled OmniFocus for iPad and OmniGraffle for iPad from the App Store, but we’re less than a week away from the big iOS 8 launch.

What are we doing, and where are the apps?

Well, we’re very happy to share that OmniFocus 2 for iPad and OmniGraffle 2 for iPad have been submitted to Apple for review. And they’re both incredible. OmniGraffle 2 is super fast. And there’s a lot that’s new: inspectors, drawing tools, AirDrop support, shape combinations, Visio support, and more.

OmniGraffle for iPad

OmniFocus 2 for iPad has some great new features and a brand new look. We’ve added a few useful extensions, too, like Sharing and a Today view. You can even create perspectives in Pro.

OmniFocus for iPad

And finally. Expect each of those extensions in OmniFocus 2 for iPad in OmniFocus 2 for iPhone. As a free update, of course.

We’re really excited to get this stuff out there to you!

Oh: shout out to my friend OmniGraffle 6.1 for Mac. Dangerously close to a Public Test!

Summertime Reading from The Omni Group

by Chuck on June 20, 2014

Or, “What’s New in Documentation Land”.

Last December, we started packaging the in-app documentation for many of our OmniApps and distributing those in EPUB3 format through Apple’s iBooks Store. These books are DRM-free and freely available to anyone—not just users of our apps. To date, nearly 30,000 copies have been downloaded; thank you!

Earlier this week, we reached a new milestone by publishing the OmniFocus 2 for iPhone User Manual, in the following languages:

  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Russian
  • Spanish

These, too, are freely available worldwide on the iBooks Store. We decided that, rather than limiting distribution to the countries or regions in which these languages are predominantly used, that we would make them available to everyone.

This is just the first step; a trial to see if this is doable (and to see how our customers react to these releases). Meantime, the Documentation Wranglers are busy at work at packaging up the translations for all of our apps with the goal of making these available on the iBooks Store as they’re ready to go (pending Apple approval, of course).

Can’t Find Our Books on Your iBooks Store?

Apple allows us to distribute our EPUBs in 51 countries, and we promise to make our books available in every iBooks Store to which we have access. However, a number of you have let us know that, while you can purchase our apps from your local App Store or Mac App Store, our books aren’t available in your country’s iBooks Store. We have been keeping track of the countries as you let us know (thank you!), and want to provide that list here again:

  • China
  • Croatia
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Israel
  • Russia
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • Turkey

While the iBooks Store is our preferred download method (we’ll get to that shortly), we want to ensure that all of our users can get to the EPUB versions of our documentation wherever you are. If you reside in one of the above countries, or if you can’t find our books on your country’s iBooks Store, you can download any of our books from our downloads site:

http://www.omnigroup.com/ftp/pub/software/MacOSX/Manuals/EPUB/

Within that directory, you’ll find region folders (for example, de for German, es for Spanish, and so on) for the various translations we have published.

Direct Download vs iBooks Store

So, you’re probably wondering whether you should just use our downloads site instead of the iBooks Store. Sure, you can do that, but there are a few huge advantages to getting our books from the iBooks Store:

  • If you have “purchased” your copy from the iBooks Store (they’re free!), you will receive a notification in iBooks whenever we release an update. If you are getting our books from the downloads site, you’ll have to check that regularly, or keep an eye out on Twitter for when we update a book.

  • One of the many reasons why people want our documentation in a different format is so they can make notes and annotations to things they regularly refer to. And while you can do this with a PDF, once you’ve added a bunch of notes to a PDF file, all of your notes and annotations are stuck in that one file. There is no easy way for you to take the notes and annotations from one PDF file and inject them in another. When you download an update from the iBooks Store, iBooks preserves your notes, annotations, and bookmarks from one version to the next.

  • The final advantage of using the iBooks Store is iCloud Sync. If you are using iCloud to sync books across your iOS devices and with your Mac, all of your notes, annotations, and bookmarks are also synced. This means that a bookmark you make in iBooks on your Mac will show up as a bookmark in the same book on your iPad, iPhone, or iPod touch.

We ask that you first look to the iBooks Store in your country to see if our books are available. If so, please download them from iBooks. If not, then please feel free to use our downloads site.

A Final Note About PDF

As you may have noticed, we have slowly phased out distributing PDF versions of our documentation. The advantages of EPUB (as noted above) far outweigh what you get with a PDF. We are continuing to work on our documentation process and toolchain, with the goal of making our docs more accessible—and printable—soon.

OmniFocus 2 for Mac: Available Now

by Dave on May 21, 2014

The last time we used this space to talk about OmniFocus 2 for Mac it was to announce that we’d ship in June.

So, hopefully this blog comes as a pleasant surprise (though we did drop a hint on Twitter!); the newest version of OmniFocus is available today, both directly from Omni and via the Mac App Store.

Pro and Standard

OmniFocus 1 was a huge success, and we think it provided great value for those who needed its power. That said, one of our goals for OmniFocus 2 was to help people who weren’t sure that they did need all that power, or worried it might get in the way. So we’ve chosen a streamlined set of features for the Standard edition of OmniFocus 2, while making some of the more complex features part of OmniFocus Pro. Those who are already making full use of the OmniFocus 1 feature set might want to go straight for Pro, but you can always start with Standard and then upgrade to Pro later.

Here’s an overview of the extra features you get with a Pro license:

  • Custom Perspectives: Create and save filtered and sorted views that are geared towards an area of responsibility, a regular activity, or a state of mind. Assign custom icons and hotkeys to make pulling them up a snap.
  • Focus: Hide everything but the projects you choose, throughout all views. For example, don’t get distracted by your home projects when you’re at work, and vice versa.
  • AppleScript: Use scripts to automate mundane actions, bring in data from other sources, and generally make OmniFocus infinitely powerful!

New Features for Everyone

Whether or not you choose Pro, OmniFocus 2 gives you a bunch of really cool features and a thoughtfully redesigned interface that looks right at home in the latest version of OS X. You can use the Forecast perspective to get a view of your actions laid out by date (and in context with what’s on your Calendar). In Forecast, assigning a due date to an action is as simple as dragging it to the appropriate day. The Review perspective gives you a structured way to take stock and make adjustments. OmniFocus 1 users loved the ease of Quick Entry, a way to capture OmniFocus items from any app. And now we’ve added Quick Open, a way to jump right to a folder, project, context, or perspective from anywhere in OmniFocus. And for those that need to generate reports for others to review or just to scribble on, we’ve beefed up printing and export so that the output is more like a document than a screenshot.

Pricing and Upgrades

OmniFocus 2 costs $39.99, with a Pro License at $79.99.

Customers who purchased OmniFocus 1 from the Omni Store can purchase an OmniFocus 2 Standard license for $19.99 or a Pro license for $39.99. If you bought OmniFocus 1 from the Mac App Store, you can buy OmniFocus 2 and get the Pro feature set for free. To make these options as easy as possible to take advantage of, we’ve created a separate page with step-by-step instructions.

Get Started!

If you’re looking for some help getting started, we recommend the set of “Support Short” videos we shot just for OmniFocus 2’s new interface. We’ve also created a whole new website called Inside OmniFocus to collect helpful information on workflows, systems, tools, and services that all work with OmniFocus. If you’ve been using OmniFocus for a while you might recognize the names and faces of our friends David Sparks, Sven Fechner, and Kourosh Dini. We’ve got new stuff from them, as well as from new friends Sabra Morris, Randy Hunt, and Jan-Yves Ruzicka. There’s a sweet User Manual available for free from the iBooks Store. And whether you have a question about how to use one of the new features or how to start fresh, our Support Humans are available by phone and email.

We hope you’ll check out OmniFocus 2 for Mac today. Just like all of our Mac apps, you can download a free trial from the product page (and switch between Pro and Standard during the 14-day period, so you can see which feature set fits your workflow the best). Thanks!