Recurrences can be used to add some automation to your task list and save you time.

Using recurrences with subtasks is like a having a Black Belt in time management productivity ninja skills! Like any advanced skill, practice is the key to success. We urge you to experiment with recurring tasks and subtasks on your own so that you can receive the maximum benefit from this powerful task feature.

In addition to this article, we suggest this FAQ that details how to use recurrences with your tasks inside of Pocket Informant:

Once you’re aware of how recurrences work, we want to help you be as successful as possible when using recurrences with subtasks inside of Pocket Informant.

There are thousands of possible combinations, we’ll show you how this can be used with one of the most common ones.

The screenshot below shows a parent task “Take Daily Medicine” and the subtasks associated with. The icon to the right that looks like multiple pages of paper indicates that the task is recurring.

Parent Task with Completed Recurring Subtasks
Daily Recurring Parent Task With Subtasks

To have this kind of successful recurring subtask pattern it’s important to know the limitations. Since you read the FAQ on how to use the subtasks this next part is now not to use subtasks and recurrences.

To begin, let’s talk about the arrangement.

It is a very abnormal usage case to have a non-recurring parent task WITH recurring subtasks. At that point a best practice would be to replace the parent task with a project. This kind of mismatch will cause issues when the tasks are completed.

Recurring Task Mismatch
Some recurrence patterns that are support

Limitations– Pocket Informant supports many different recurrence patterns and “recur from” from options. The options that Pocket Informant supports far exceed what our sync partners (except for Informant Sync) can fully support.

If you have selected, for example, a recurrence pattern that is not supported by Google Tasks then during the sync operation the sync service will change the recurrence pattern or it will remove it altogether. The end results will be either the end of the recurrence pattern, a different recurrence pattern inserted, duplicated occurrences, or lost data. Please see the graphic at the end of this article to see some further differences.

As a result, if you are using complex recurrence patterns it is HIGHLY recommended to use Informant Sync.

If you have multiple devices and you complete the same task on both devices before they have synced, the new recurrence of the task will be duplicated. A best practice is to complete the task on one device, and wait for the completion to sync to your other devices. You can manually sync by going to the settings, accounts, tapping the sync service you wish to use and tapping the sync button.

Another best practice regards editing an occurrence of a recurring series of tasks which will result in a new recurrence pattern being created from the edit point forward. If this is done often, over time, you can build up “layers” of recurrences in the application. These layers can impact performance, result in duplicated data, and potentially create sync related issues. It’s better to delete the task, and create a new task with a recurrence pattern if you do this often.

Occasionally editing an occurrence is not going to cause any issues. This is a suggested best practice if you are editing recurring items multiple times in a week or more or editing the same item more than once or twice.

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iOS Only– In the event that you do encounter an issue with recurrence handling such as duplicates the first step in troubleshooting is to go to the settings, advanced, and tap the reset cache button.

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The Reset Cache Button can help correct some recurrence issues

For a comparison of subtasks vs checklists and some usage examples please see the article at the link below:

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