Apple introduced Reminders on iOS 5.0 and later added the feature to OS X Mountain Lion. This little feature can be incredibly useful, especially when paired with iCloud. This will allow you to access all your reminders from any device logged on to the same iCloud account. As an added benefit, you can share any list of reminders with anyone on an iDevice, just as easily.
Start by opening the Reminders application on your Mac (running OS X Mountain Lion). Although you can create reminders on any iOS device running iOS 5 and later, you can’t share them with others – reminders can only be shared when created on a Mac.
Until Apple rolls out a way to share reminders using an iPhone or iPad, let’s focus on the way to do it on a Mac. Open the Reminders application on your Mac; use spotlight to locate it if it’s not found on your dock.
You should see any current reminders scheduled (as well as completed), separated in categories along the left sidebar. You’ll need to be logged into iCloud on your Mac as well as your iPhone or iPad to sync reminders between your devices. Log on to your iCloud account on your Mac by selecting the iCloud icon in System Preferences.
Create a new category by clicking on the plus icon on the lower left; I’ve named mine “Shared Reminders“.
Populate this new category with any reminders you’d like by simply moving the cursor to the text field on the right and type away. For the basic type of reminder, you can stop here.
Click on the info icon on the right of each text field to add more information to an item. You can turn any item into a location-based reminder or choose a specific day for an alert to appear. Be sure to have a specific address handy if you are using location-based reminders; you won’t be able to search for one within the Reminders application.
Share your reminders with whoever, and as many people, as you’d like. On the left sidebar, click on the category you’d like to share; it will turn crimson red as you do so.
You’ll see the share icon to the right of the category name; click on this icon to bring up the sharing menu. I’m going to share my new category with my friend, Joe. All you need is an email address; don’t worry about knowing a specific iCloud address – that will be entered on their end.
These shared reminders can be added to, updated and deleted by anyone on your shared list.
I’m not sure why Apple hasn’t added the option to create shared reminder lists with others directly from an iPhone or iPad. It’s a feature that would certainly increase in its helpfulness when accessible on a portable device. I’d also like to see an option to receive an alert when someone modifies a shared reminder.
Fortunately, once you’ve set up a reminder list (and shared it), it can be added to at any time without the need of a computer.
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