When comparing Remember the Milk vs Trello, the Slant community recommends Trello for most people. In the question“What is the best cross-platform to-do list app?” Trello is ranked 1st while Remember the Milk is ranked 17th. The most important reason people chose Trello is:
There are two primary columns: the board is shown on the left and all the other controls on the right. The main means of interaction is dragging and dropping to-do cards into the various lists. The board structure is very customizable, and includes a variety of features that help along the way: color-coding, due dates, card images, checklists with a graphics bar that allows following progress easily, and card aging for cards that haven’t been touched in a long time.
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Pro Excellent cross platform support
Whether you depend on an iOS, Windows or Android phone; Google Calendar or Outlook; Evernote or Twitter: RTM has an app or extension for you.
Pro Has its own syntax for programming smart lists
Smart lists are configured using Remember the Milk's syntax, making it very customizable.
Pro Location-based notifications
You can set locations for each task (for example a specific store, or a general location like 'near the beach' for shell collectors), and RTM will remind you when you are near or in that location. This can help keep your daily list uncluttered and remind you of errands you might have forgotten.
Pro Tasks may have additional options
Extra options such as how often it repeats, the due date, and the location.
Pro Support of a "start" date
A start date can be set which can be used with smartlists or to set a reminder.
Pro Powerful query language
Query language can be used to build your own GTD-based system, with tags and lists and queries. Such as system can be used for private life and work alongside several simple lists without things getting mixed up.
Pro Lists can be shared
Share lists with other Remember The Milk users, or with iCal and more. Shared lists can be collaboratively updated. This makes it great for teams or just to share progress with others.
Pro Quickly add rich text
Remember The Milk offers Smart Add – shortcuts that allow you to quickly add advanced information to a task. For example, you can quickly add a due date, set the priority level, add a tag, set repeat times, add URLs, and add notes to your tasks. For the full list, check out How Do I Use Smart Add?
Pro Manual sorting
Manual sorting is available on both the web app and android, allowing prioritization of tasks. This can be particularly useful for shopping lists, where you can put all the meat together, and all the cheese together etc. to make it easier to skim through when you're in the store.
Pro Semantic shortcuts
Remember The Milk has a list of semantic shortcuts that allow adding tasks and task options faster.
Pro Nice Android Widget
Compared to competitors like todoist, the widget doesn't use too much space.
Pro Really, really cool support
They react within hours, and they actually keep track of your issue.
Pro Support for keywords to set due/start date, add to list with one line of text
There are special characters which open a box so the user can select predefined values or a calendar picker.
Pro Lightning fast sync
Syncs quickly across all your devices and platforms.
Pro Many features already working in the free version
The majority of commonly used features are available for free. The pro version adds increased functionality such as advanced sorting, mobile push notifications and sharing permissions.
Pro Syncs with Evernote
Not only syncing, it's more of a "linking" with a two-way synchronization. Changing the title of a note in Evernote will update the title in Remember the Milk. So far, Remember The Milk is the only to-do app with a feature like this.
Pro Add tasks via e-mail
You can add tasks to Remember the Milk via email easily once you get the hang of formatting the messages.
Pro Twitter integration
The Twitter integration is excellent and allows for many types of automation.
Pro Simple and easy to use interface
There are two primary columns: the board is shown on the left and all the other controls on the right. The main means of interaction is dragging and dropping to-do cards into the various lists.
The board structure is very customizable, and includes a variety of features that help along the way: color-coding, due dates, card images, checklists with a graphics bar that allows following progress easily, and card aging for cards that haven’t been touched in a long time.
Pro Free for unlimited users
Trello offers a very generous free version that has no ads, no restrictions on the number of users, and very little restriction on how the program can be used. The paid features are generally cosmetic, such as the ability to change the background, add stickers or integration with other tools.
Pro Highly flexible workflow
Trello calls items used in the workflow “cards.” Cards are double-sided and can contain subtasks as well as notes and other details.
Card columns can be used to simulate a workflow by moving cards from left to right as they are completed, or as a way of indicating task priority.
The workflow is highly flexible as the columns are completely customizable to suit the task flow. For example, tasks can be put through a workflow "idea > approved > in-progress > pending review > released" or simply "ideas > released" depending on the granularity level needed.
This makes Trello a great solution to feature management as it's possible to set up boards to handle everything from agile sprints to a more generic to-do list, all with status management.
Pro Functionality can be extended via plug-ins
Voting, view, and calendar plug-ins further increase the functionality.
Pro Markdown support with well-rendered images
Trello supports Markdown, meaning that HTML input is represented appropriately. Cards with attachments are also rendered well. For example, images are shown correctly on the card, bug links are detected etc.
Pro Great real-time team collaboration features
Trello has permissions at the board level as well as the ability to assign multiple people to each card. There are a lot of sharing options available and boards can be made visible for the public. It's also possible to subscribe to a card to be notified of its progress. The simplicity of the UI makes collaboration easy because it’s very simple to see the progress of each card and who is responsible for it. It also updates constantly to reflect real-time changes in progress.
The simplicity of the UI makes collaboration easy as it’s very simple to see the progress of each card and who is responsible for it. It also reflect changes on boards in real-time.
Pro Works well for visual thinkers
The UI is based around Kanban, so you can see all your tasks and their status clearly.
Pro Excellent for groups using agile software development
The responsiveness and layers of customization make it easy for team members of various disciplines to collaborate on the same task board.
Each card can have one or even multiple task lists.
Pro Cross-platform and cross-sync
Trello works on all modern devices through the web application and has native apps for iOS, Android and Windows 8/10 devices.
Pro Good performance
Pro Lots of API integrations
Pro Great native app for Android and iOS
Pro Attach files to cards
Keep all of your files (images, documents, etc.) organized on their relevant cards.
Pro Smooth media integration
Works like a charm.
Pro Action history log allows you to rapidly follow changes
There is a global history system which allows to rapidly follow changes. There is also a notification system if another user updates the board while you're watching it.
Pro Features to add voting on cards
Trello offers support for features to add voting on cards, often referred to as 'power-ups'.
Con Free version lacks features
Mobile reminders, subtsaks, offline mode, Microsoft Outlook sync, priority, and more features are limited to the paid version ($39.99/year). To see the full list of restrictions, check out this page.
Con Subtasks only available in Pro version
Subtasks can break a longer to-do item into discrete tasks, helping you keep tabs on your progress.
Con Bad UI redesign
The web app takes up too much screen real estate and uses a half-screen format that requires a wide screen. The task edit screen is clunky. It still has UI bugs one year in. You can't complete tasks from the UI.
Con Does not support attachments
No support for cloud providers and/or support to attach/upload images or files.
Con Cannot add task in notification bar
There is no pull down option to add a task in the notification bar.
Con Ugly icon
The goofy cow image does not fit well with a professsional office environment.
Con Managing large projects may be difficult
Trello works best with medium to small projects and with very high-level overviews. It is less effective for projects that require very granular management due to the fact that it becomes considerably more difficult to keep track of various cards and priorities as they are pushed off the screen.
Con Not really a to do list
Trello is much more a workflow and project management program than a typical to-do app, which makes it overwhelmingly robust for those looking to jot down their shopping list.
Con Subtasks lack features
Every task can have a list of subtasks which more closely resembles a standard to-do list.
These lack the functions that cards offer you. You cannot comment on a sub-list, give the sub-tasks due dates, or provide additional information. You are limited to only checking them off once completed.
Con Can't create dependencies between cards
Con No desktop client
There is no Windows or Mac client now but you can still access all of the features through your web browser.
Con No multi-board aggregation
If you have multiple boards with tasks on them there is no way to get all the tasks on one board in a way that changes on one board will update the other.
Con Can't get one view of cards across all boards
However, you can view all cards assigned to you.
Con No quick deadline assignment
You have to open a Calendar every time to set a date without any quick options like today, tomorrow etc.
Con You can't add more than 1 Power Up without paying for it
Con Impossible to use Pomodoro timer connected to Trello on iOS
Con Light on features
Trello is focused on simplicity and as such forgoes certain common features that may or may not be important to you.