A calendar is a tool created many millennia ago, a tool that is vital to our very functionality as intelligent beings. Yet, when technology has ventured far beyond a simple grid of numbers, the Calendar applications we use haven’t seemed to evolve beyond that.
Sunrise, a new application built by ex-foursquare engineers, finds a way to turn a traditionally consumptive tool (the calendar) into a to-do list of sorts, not unlike the way Mailbox turns the inbox into a to-do list. In this episode of Fly or Die, John and I both agree that the beautiful yet simple UI is clearly superior to the standard iOS Calendar app.
The upper portion of the home display, showing two weeks at a time, easily expands into a full calendar view when pulled down, while a streamed list of events scrolls along below. And our approval isn’t all about surface appearances, either. The app pulls in information from Facebook, Google and LinkedIn to ensure you have directions to any appointments, access to communications with other attendees, and even displays the weather in case you need help choosing an outfit.
It takes the calendar, an often isolated application, and loops it in with all of the apps that it would need to be useful on its own, such as social, weather, etc.
The one caveat (and it’s a big one) is that Sunrise surprisingly does not integrate with iOS or OS X Calendar directly. Calendar enthusiasts will have to export all their data into Google in order to sync with Sunrise, but in the app’s defense, the team describes Sunrise as a Calendar app for Google Calendar users.
If that sounds like you, the iOS only app should be a nice addition to your homescreen. Otherwise, you may want to wait until Sunrise hooks into Apple’s Calendar offerings.