Be Focused Pro - Focus Timer & Goal Tracker
By Denys Yevenko
Open the Mac App Store to buy and download apps.
Staying on task seems is a real challenge for our screen-bound generation. The Be Focused lets you get things done by breaking up individual tasks among discrete intervals, separated by short breaks. It’s a surprisingly effective way to retain motivation and focus. Create tasks, configure breaks and track your progress throughout the day, week or custom period. Use either your iPhone, iPad or Mac – your devices always stay in sync.
- Manage your tasks
- Track your progress throughout the day, week or custom period
- Fast and easy goal tracking
- Customize to maximize productivity:
• Work interval duration
• Short break duration
• Long break duration
• Number of intervals between long breaks
• Target number of intervals per day
- Ability to start, pause, or skip work interval
- Auto-start the next timer (option)
- Ability to edit the number of intervals
- Export to a CSV file
- Ability to paste a task list from other applications
- Global hotkeys
- Optional ticking sound
- Custom alarm sound
- Launch at startup option
- Syncs between iPad, iPhone and Mac*
- Also available for iPhone and iPad
* Sync with iOS devices requires Be Focused Pro for iOS, sold separately.
What's New in Version 1.6.2
• Fixed "Unable to start timer" issue
• Updated the app icon design
• Multiple fixes and improvements
Simple, but useful, and effective. Great integration
This is a very streamlined, easy to use task timer. You can set the duration you work, duration of your break between tasks, and how many work intervals you want for a “long break”. I am sucked into the Apple ecosphere, and thus can validate that this does indeed work on all OS X and iOS platforms, including the Apple watch. My only criticisms, which I hope the developer considers to really make this killer: 1) Use iCloud for better synchonization. It currently requires you to set up yet another id and password. This is unnecessary with iCloud sync. And 2) you can create multiple tasks, but they are all stuck with the same time duration for “work interval”. This is annoying. I want the flexibility to control the interval length for each task! Some tasks are more mentally gruelling and thus I want a slightly shorter timer. Other that, however, it’s really good.
The app is good for keeping time on work or studying, and also for timing breaks, which helps to keep productivity high. The only issue with the app that is a major set back is the sync with other devices. If the timer is started on the iPhone it won’t display on the macbook unless a manual refresh is done. Sometimes the manual refresh does not work either so the account has to be signed off and signed back in in order to sync with server data. Starting the timer on the mac does not automatically sync to other devices as well. Refreshing the data on the iPhone will actually reset back the timer on the mac. Please fix this!!! Productivity takes a toll when working on a project and having to be glued to the mac to check, or having to guess, if the timer is working properly across all devices.
Update: An essential part of my routine
Although the name and the icon have changed several times, the app is great and I still use it almost every day. The glitches that were somewhat annoying in the past appear to have been fixed. I never have trouble with synchronizing or anything else. It’s a wonderful productivity tool, not too complex, but flexible enough with its parameters.
Original review: Have used it for several months
Often I stop using app store apps I have downloaded after a few days or weeks and then feel like a fool for having wasted my money. This one is different. It gives you the reminders you need and stays out of your way otherwise. Not too fancy, but has enough features to give me the customizations I need — you can change the length of pomodoros and breaks, and name the tasks you are working on.
I think the paid version is a little buggier than the free version for some reason, but I like the synchronization it offers.
If you find it skipping breaks, I suggest that you turn off the “skip break if idle” setting. That feature seems to be a little too aggressive about what “idle” means.