How to send To-Do’s from Amazon Echo to Cultured Code’s Things

December 14, 2016

I’ve been using Things as my task management app for years and have no intention of giving it up anytime soon. Unfortunately there’s not much integration with devices or platforms outside the Apple ecosystem. I thought I’d be out of luck when it comes to the Amazon Echo, but there’s actually an easy solution: IFTTT!

There’s not much to this, but here are the basic steps:

  1. Create an IFTTT account and install the app, if you don’t have it already. You’ll need the app installed to sync with iCloud.
  2. In IFTTT, add the Amazon Alexa service and create a new applet. Use Item added to your To Do List as the trigger, and Add reminder to list as the action. You’ll probably want to specify a list name, too.
  3. In Things, open preferences and enable “Show reminders from…” for your iCloud reminders list. You’re done! Tell your Echo to add something to the to-do list, and it should appear as available to import in Things.

You may need to open the IFTTT app the first time you add a to-do, in order for it to prompt you for access to reminders. Afterwards everything will run in the background, although it can take a while for new items to appear.

This workflow isn’t quite perfect, but it’s enough to get by until Things adds its own support for the Echo.

Marc Charbonneau is a mobile software engineer in Portland, OR. Want to reply to this article? Get in touch on Twitter @mbcharbonneau.