Article in App of the Week category.

Up Ahead Is the Best Countdown App

Oh oh oh! It’s only four days til the next keg tapping at our local brewery? Clearly your first question is “Andrew! How did you…

Oh oh oh! It’s only four days til the next keg tapping at our local brewery? Clearly your first question is “Andrew! How did you know it was in four days!? A calendar reminder?!” No you silly duck, I just used Up Ahead! Ok. That was a fair amount of punctuation and a bit of an aggressive start to this app review but Up Ahead does like to say it’s the playful countdown app.

Launching Up Ahead, you’re greeted with a timeline. Your closest event sits at the top while the rest waterfall down as their dates get further and further away. In between each card, you’ll see a faint number to indicate how many days lie between each event. 

When you create an event to track in Up Ahead, you get to customize it all. Sure, pop in a name and date, but there’s much more that is unique. You can choose an icon to go with the event, a themed background for the card, and a primary color. For example, if you were to-the-moon excited about the upcoming Borderlands movie, you could create a card with an orange primary color, a game controller as the icon, and a gaming theme for the card.

If you use the widgets on your Home Screen, these choices will carry over. You can choose cards in multiple sizes displaying different amounts of information but the color, pattern, and icon all can be displayed. Even the multi-event card color-codes your events alongside a miniature version of the icon. 

There’s a lot of little customization features in Up Ahead that make it feel well-polished for such a simple app. There’s a ton of themes and app icons you can choose from. You can toggle off sound and haptics independently. And iCloud can keep a backup of all your dates as you move between devices.

Recently, the app got a notable update to take advantage of some new features in iOS 16. With this update, widgets can be displayed right on your Lock Screen, always within view. Up Ahead offers multiple types of widgets that can hyper-focus on a single event or can display a list with multiple events together. They’re easy to add and customize at any point. Personally, I’ve been using Up Ahead to track the days until the due date of my first born kiddo. Haven’t gotten tired of seeing that number tick down. 

But enough about other people's apps.


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