Isn’t Pomodoro a type of marinara sauce?
And here’s a great recipe.
But Pomodoro has taken on a life of its own as a productivity hack.
Specifically, it’s a way to measure your time to work productively in short bursts and to help you stay focused in the process.
It was created by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s to do more with time management and think about work differently.
It’s easy to do as well–you just need a timer.
Here are the steps to the Pomodoro Technique.
- Set a timer to 25 minutes. Each 25-minute session is a “Pomodoro.”
- Work on your task.
- Break time! Take 5 minutes.
- Work for another 25 minutes and take another 5-minute break.
- After 4 Pomodoros, take a longer break, such as 15 or 30 minutes.
That’s the basics to the Pomodoro technique. However, here are some other tips to help make your Pomodoro time a success:
- Think about the effort for your task and start your Pomodoro.
- Avoid distractions while working on your tasks.
- Recap and review during your 25 minutes, not only for work.
- Map out how many Pomodoros (or 25-minute blocks) you’ll need for that task
- Schedule your Pomodoros around your meetings and other appointments
Now that you understand the basics of the Pomodoro Technique, let’s explore the best Pomodoro timer apps to help you track your time and work.
Pomodone is an amazing time tracking app because it lives right inside your current task management software. (Yes, this includes ClickUp!). They also have a Chrome extension to track your work no matter where you go.
Their Lite plan includes three integrations, and their upgraded ultimate plan includes unlimited integrations across all task management programs.
Best of all–you get subtask support, too!
Reviews: 4.5/5 on Capterra
Pricing: $2.29-$4.01 per month on the annual plan
A very popular time-tracking app, Toggl also has an integration specifically for the Pomodoro technique. Their Toggl Button Chrome extension gives you a Pomodoro timer. Just set the timer for 25 minutes and get going!
In addition, Toggl provides lots of time tracking within apps, including ClickUp. Toggl is well-known for its time estimation and time tracking features.
Reviews: 4.5/5 on Capterra
Another option if you’re into Kanban boards, but want something more dedicated to Kanban than Trello, is KanbanFlow.
Yes, they have a built-in Pomodoro timer in their app, but they also let you track your interruptions (yikes!). Now, you’ll need an excuse for why you stopped and this is a powerful motivator.
A quick peek at your email? Nope!
And imagine justifying your Instagram addiction, even to yourself!
This may scare off some users, or provide you exactly with the accountability you need to finish your work and tasks.
They also offer project management with collapsable columns, subtasks, and even WIP limits–taking Kanban to the max!
Platforms: Web browser
Reviews: 4 / 5 on G2Crowd
Pricing: Free to $5 per user/month
Use FocusBooster across every platform, with lots of customization to make your Pomodoro timer fit your style. You can choose from a dark and light theme, and even use the mini-timer that stays at the bottom of your screen as you work.
Extra perks include saving incomplete sessions, timesheets if you’re doing client work, manual time entry and robust reports to show you how your time was spent during the day. Their dashboards are comprehensive and give you a glimpse into how you spend your time.
The downside is that the free plan only offers 20 Pomodoro sessions per month. If you don’t need reporting or client time tracking, you may want to choose another Pomodoro app.
Platforms: Web, Windows, macOS, iOS, Android
Pricing: Free to $4.99 per user/month.
This app is a full-fledged task management software based on the Pomodoro Technique. Tasks are tracked with the Pomodoro method, and each task has a timer attached to it.
Pomotodo reports on your performance, noting how many tasks have been tracked, and if you’ve accomplished your daily goals.
It also may work for Get Things Done (GTD) fans, combining two popular productivity systems into one app.
Bonus features include hashtag organization, subtasks and more.
This is for the person or organization who wants to go all-in with the Pomodoro technique, #noregrets.
Platforms: Web, Windows, macOS, Chrome, iOS, Android
Pricing: Free to $3.90 per user/month
6. Pomello App
Use Trello but also want to have the Pomodoro technique? Pomello is an interesting choice.
It works specifically with Trello and turns your cards directly into Pomodoro tasks. What does that mean? It adds a timer to each of your cards and this also helps you track how long a task may take.
Upgrade to the pro version and you can export reports and even have custom timer sounds for different types of tasks.
Reviews: 4.8/5 on G2Crowd
Pricing: Free to $20 per year
You’re a simple person. You like simple things.
Then you need Pomodoro.cc.
This no-frills browser app features a large timer with a description box for the task you’re working on. Add your task in the description box. Then when you’re finished for the day, you’ll see every task you worked on that day listed below the Pomodoro timer.
Then, export your tasks to keep a record of what you’re working on.
This is probably best for individuals and not teams, but it could be handy if you want to knock out a large project or a few hobbies!
Here’s another simple browser app, this time taking the food puns into avocados.
Pomocado also offers a huge timer, and then another tab to line up your tasks to work on. The interface is a bit cleaner than Pomodoro.cc but with no bells and whistles.
Easy to use and gets the job done.
Reviews: 250+ upvotes on Product Hunt
9. Be Focused – Focus Timer
What once started as a dedicated Pomodoro app has transformed into something a bit more.
The additional value for Be Focused is that it lives in the top menu bar of your Mac. Click and then set your time, list your tasks, see what’s been done and then track your progress.
The progress reporting shows how many Pomodoros (or intervals) you completed, which ones you skipped and how many tasks you finished in that time.
Be Focused is a desktop app, keeping you off the Internet if that’s too much of a temptation.
Platforms: iOS, iPhone, iPad
Reviews: 4.8/5 on the Mac App Store
10. Marinara Timer
Alright, we’re back to the pasta riffs.
The Marinara Timer offers you a Pomodoro timer, a custom timer, and a kitchen timer.
The in-your-face-browser interface doesn’t require sign-in; just click and get working.
On the other hand, there are no to-do lists–but there is a handy sharing button.
Other team members can see and manage your timer, and it even has an administrative function.
Race against your colleagues or take a quiz at the same time: you decide.
Conclusion: What is the best Pomodoro app for you?
With any choice you make, you’re trying to be more productive. So the best Pomodoro app for you challenges your current time management strategies.
The learning curve may be steep, depending on the depth of your procrastination.
A Pomodoro app is only one solution that you need in your productivity toolbox–great task management software like ClickUp offers more than what these apps do.
ClickUp has to-do lists like many of these apps, but also has:
- Team collaboration
- Task management
- In-depth project reporting
- Multiple views
- And lots more! See every ClickUp feature.
These won’t be found in a basic Pomodoro app.
And guess what? You get many of those features in the free version.
That said, a Pomodoro app timer could help you stay focused and do more than you thought possible.
More Productivity Tips from ClickUp:
Zack is a Client Success Champion at ClickUp, where he supports teams around the world to be more productive. When he’s not helping clients solve the worlds problems he is watching movies and hanging out with friends and family. If you are lucky you might also catch him DJing at your local nightclub.