Worth upgrading to Pro?


I’ve been using OF for about a year now and it has greatly helped with my sanity. Before I was using an open source program. I use OF at home only and looking into Pro at the moment. Wondering if upgrading to Pro is worth it. I can create custom perspective like today or filter by estimated time etc., focus/ unfocus. Not a big fan of apple script as I already use Hazel, KM and Automator.

Would like to hear opinions on if it’s worth paying the extra bucks strictly for home settings. Thanks.

Yes. You’ll kick yourself that you didn’t do it a year ago.

Custom perspectives are a life-saver. AppleScript support lets you streamline your workflow.
Without Pro, you’ve got one arm tied behind your back.

Definitely yes, I would say. The custom perspectives makes Omnifocus a completely different app - an app that easily can be made to exactly suit your taste and needs. Even if you only use it at home (like I do, too), you probably have your personal ideas of what the most important tasks are, how you would like to have them presented and sorted, when you would like to see different tasks and when you would like to have them hidden, what combinations of tasks you would like to see to get the best overviews and most efficiently prioritize among them. Perspectives are so much more than a personalized Today-view, and I am quite sure that you will appreciate them more and more as you begin to get used to having them and learn what you could with them.

I’m certainly happy to have the professional version, but I’m not convinced that it’s necessary, certainly not for everyone.

The good news is that if you decide to jump in head first, buy it, and end up regretting it, there’s a 30-day return policy.

But, if you want to try it out first, I’m pretty sure the sales team (sales@omnigroup.com) would issue you a trial serial number for Pro. If you’re on the Mac App Store version, you might be able to download the web version and use it as a trial, but I’m not sure.

I bought it to reward the devs, but have found it immensely useful to have the extra perspectives. I think that it is a very low priced app, considering the use that I get out of it. OmniOutliner seems expensive in comparison so I haven’t bought the desktop version.


(Side note: Automator is just a GUI front-end for AppleScript.)

By the way, @henders, I think that the Applescript capability in Omnifocus might be of interest for you even if you’re not interested in scripting. There are existing scripts that extend the functionality in Omnifocus in convenient ways. Here are some scripts that I find useful:

Right now, web links can only be opened by clicking if they are placed in the Note part of a task. If they are placed as task names, you have to select the link there, ctrl-click on it, and choose ”Open URL” from the popup menu. This script open such links directly for one or more tasks:
Open links in one or more task names

I often need to move tasks to the bottom or, more often, to the top of lists. These scripts do that for me:
Move tasks to bottom or top

I often wish to defer tasks a specific number of days into the future. This script defers tasks until tomorrow, but you can make different versions of it that defers tasks any number of days into the future simply by replacing the digit 1 at the end of the script by another number:
Defer to tomorrow


For me, it would be useful if it opened links from task notes, not names :D

Hi all

Thanks for your reply. I’ve been playing around with Pro and looked at other people’s custom perspective across the net. So far the most impressive feature for me is the time estimate perspective where I can see if I have a bunch of items I can do in 5 minutes or 2 hours. The second most impressive feature was focus; everything else disappears and all my contexts are switched to the project I’m focusing on at the moment.

Other than these two I didn’t find the other perspectives that’d be much useful to me. I don’t need a today perspective as I get the badge alert for items that are due today.

All my regular maintenance stuff are in my calendar; so I don’t need any perspective for that.

I’m still in two minds about whether I should upgrade just for the two features I like. I’ve got 11 projects and about 330 action items; half of these projects are on hold; I’ll make them active when I finish the current ones.

Would anyone give some examples of how they use perspectives day-to-day.


I have a pretty simple set up and my most used perspective is my Today perspective. I don’t want to set a due date unless an item is truly due and missing it would cause me difficulty. Instead I use a system of deferring and flagging (like you’ve probably seen many many times). This perspective shows up on my iPhone’s Today panel.

My second most used perspectives are ones that show me available items, one grouped by project, another by defer date (for things that I’ve let slip by or haven’t set a defer date on).

I think that it may be more productive for you to just try it. Ask for a trial, or just buy it and get a refund if you’re not happy.

I use a number of perspectives, the two most commonly used are: -

Mail - i have post going to a number of addresses depending on whether it needs signing for or not, or work related.

Deferred - helps me keep track of items that I have deferred to earlier dates and not got done so that I can bring them forward to another date. In fact I recently picked up a script for the Mac that allows me to re-date those in bulk!

My perspectives could often be done in different ways, but these provide shortcuts to information that I need.

Maybe you don’t need the pro version then,@henders. There is, after all, a reason why The Omni Group offer a standard alternative. Nicely structured as it is, the standard version is ready to use directly and will be sufficient for many users. If you are satisfied with how you are getting your things done, stay with the standard version. On the other hand, as you are still asking, it seems like you are hoping for Omnifocus to help you better than it does today. In that case, ask yourself what structure or presentation you are missing for efficiently getting things done your way. There are usually solutions in the pro version.

In my case, I have two custom perspectives that I use all the time. After I have checked if there are any tasks in the forecast view, I switch to these perspectives:

  1. Priorities. As I don’t need contexts for other things, I use them for prioritizing. I have a perspective showing the following contexts, in the following order: Today, Daily, Deferred, This week, This month, Stages. As I only use due dates when there are consequenses if tasks aren’t done, I could then in harmony continue working in this perspective, without any need to repeatedly set new dates for tasks that haven’t been done. The context Daily is for tasks I do every day. The context Deferred shows deferred tasks when they become available. The context Stages is for bigger tasks that I need to work repeatedly on. But, of course, all this could be achieved by using the standard Contexts perspective. I just find it convenient and clearifying to have a separate button for it to choose after I have finished my due tasks.

  2. First available. I have a number of projects, or categories of tasks rather, that I like to work on regularly. I have a perspective that shows the first available task in each of this projects/categories. This has made a big difference for me. I don’t get overwhelmed by all waiting tasks anymore, as I in my reviews of the projects already have made my prioritizing and now only see the highest prioritized task in each project and just could pick one of those.


For me the pro version was worth it for the Applescripts alone - I use an auto parser and the project templates scripts most days (the first multiple times a day, every day!), and custom perspectives too.

Thanks to all for your generous replies.

I’ve decided to go ahead and purchase the Pro version as I can see numerous benefits that it provides and many of them I’ve been using in the last few days, like:

  • time estimate - I have a perspective which shows me items I can do in 5 mins, 1 hour etc.
  • focus on multiple projects - I have created a perspective which will focus on two of my most important projects. It’s great to see items only related to these two projects.
  • Changed perspective - I use this during weekly review to see items that have changed recently and if there’s anything needed done on them.
  • Deferred perspective - see which items I have deferred. Although I usually catch them during the weekly review.
  • Focus: I find it useful to zone in on just one project and let everything else disappear.
  • Apple scripts - so far I’m using two: later and Total time. I find total time really valuable which shows me how much time I need to spend in “this” project.


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I must also add that cost was another factor I considered. As discussed in one of my previous posts (Upgrade frequency and associated cost) Omnigroup charges for upgrade once every 7 or so years.


Hi Jan,

I am interested in your perspectives. Can you post a screen shot of the setup?