Seekrtech once released an app for Forest concentration: Stay focused, which is essentially a reimagined timer for those who use the Pomodoro technique. The app costs $2, and for that you get a program that is not only tastefully made, but also meaningful, and thanks to elements of gamification, the progress you earn will be very frustrating to lose. All of this combined has helped the application not only to get a huge number of positive reviews in the App Store, where you can download Forest: Stay focused, but also to become the top program in the "productivity" section in 126 countries.
Download Forest for $1.99 from the AppStore.
What is the pomodoro technique?
There are many explanations of this technique on the Internet, and each author (here we are talking only about those who wrote books about pomodoro) tries to tell the story in his own way, leaving only the concept in common, but changing the details. We will try to give an objective view of the situation, so we will intentionally avoid backstory. The essence of the pomodoro technique is to focus on a specific task you have set for yourself. You set a timer for some time (the standard "tomodoro" is 25 minutes), after which you get to work and do your best to deal only with that task, without being distracted by notifications and other outside irritants.
If you are distracted by a phone call, smartphone message or urgent mail - it is considered that you "didn't take a tomato", you need to take a five-minute break and try to approach the "tomato" again. A successfully taken "tomato" is counted in the daily statistics - after it you rest for 5 minutes, and then proceed to the next "tomato". After 3-4 successful "tomatoes" you can take a big break for 15-20 (or even 30) minutes - have a coffee, take a walk in the office or down the street, do some physical work. Taking 14 "tomatoes" is considered ideal - this is a standard 8-hour workday, so more than 10 successful "tomatoes" a day can be considered superheroic, such results even the most productive people do not always achieve.
And that's why pomodoro - Francesco Cirillo, the creator of the pomodoro technique, had a timer in the form of a tomato. As a student, he wondered if it was possible to really learn without being distracted by external factors. In fact, from that moment the technique began to develop.
Obviously, not everyone can work this way - imagine if the cashier in the store decided to use the pomodoro technique? Or a bank consultant, a truck driver, a doctor - the list goes on and on. Most likely, the pomodoro will suit those who need to do routine work and who will not be often distracted by calls, letters and messages. But even if you can't get away from these factors, you can agree with your colleagues that you will work as a "tomato," and they will have to put up with it. Yes, you will probably be laughed at, but that will change when you get all your work done and leave at 6 p.m. and your colleagues are left to finish what they didn't do during the day.
How do I use Forest: Stay focused?
So, you decided to try the pomodoro technique, but you don't know where to start, especially since there are a lot of timers in the App Store. Forest is not just a timer, it's also a little game. The point is that for each successfully taken "tomato" you get a small achive in the form of a grown bush or tree, depending on what time you set on the timer. All trees are displayed on a special field, which clearly shows how productive you were during the day. If you don't take the "tomato" (here you have to be honest with yourself and not stuff up your stats), you are left with a stump instead of a tree. The app is sure to remind you that if you refuse to take the "tomato", "your pretty little tree will die," which will also play on your feelings. You kind of virtual tree does not owe anything, but still pathetic.
At any given moment, not only a visual picture is available to you, but also formal statistics - how much time you actually worked, and how much is a percentage of your working time. Obviously, it will be much more pleasant to look at a beautiful and healthy forest than at stumps and twigs, so that the user will try to take "tomatoes" rather than to pile them up. In this respect, Forest is much more interesting than any uninformative stopwatch from the App Store, which may be made beautifully, but not as clearly.
The app can also keep track of how long you don't touch your phone - set a timer and give it up for a while. With the advent of the app restriction feature in the latest firmware, such a feature in Forest doesn't seem to be needed, but you can still try it.
What's the bottom line?
Ultimately, Forest is a great timer for productivity, and it's hard to argue with that. Beautiful, minimalistic and very fashionable - that is, perhaps, the few things that can be said about the app. What's more, it's also not very expensive, and it pays for every dollar you spend on it. The only problem is that the program doesn't have a Russian localization, and the developers are stubbornly ignoring it. And for nothing - the Russian-speaking audience still prefers not to use unlocalized versions of applications, and Forest would definitely benefit from several million downloads.
I have been writing reviews of mobile games since 2011. I am actively involved in the development of mobile eSports, commentating on Auto Chess, Clash Royale, PUBG Mobile matches. If I like a game, I like it for a long time and study it thoroughly. And share my thoughts with everyone!