Fantastical + Cardhop
Pricing update for subscribers
Subscription pricing for Flexibits Premium will increase on January 3, 2023. You will not be charged the new price until your subscription renews.
Due to inflation and rising costs, this is the first time we have needed to increase pricing since Flexibits Premium launched 3 years ago. The new annual pricing will be $56.99 (US) — an increase of $1.42/month (US). Other currencies may differ slightly.
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Huh, that’s +42% if I’m looking at the pricing right (I can’t find the new pricing in euros to directly compare with what I’m paying now). I think I still like Fantastical enough to let my subscription continue but I have about a month to reconsider. I mostly use it for natural language input, the way it syncs calendar sets across devices and the nice UI but that’s a steep price increase.
Yes it is. But everything including food, fuel, and housing is getting more expensive, and people are needing higher wages if they are going to keep up. I expect we will continue to see programs move to subscriptions and software prices continue to increase. And I wouldn’t be surprised to see many native apps move to the cloud in an effort to hold down cost.
Still things today are a lot better than they were in the “good ole days”. In 1983 a copy of Lotus 1-2-3 was $495 ($1414 in 2022 dollars).
I’ve been using Fantastical mainly for the reasons others have listed: the joining conference calls feature, calendar sets, and natural language entry. The latter two are particularly useful for my weekly planning meeting, where I figure out how I’m going to schedule my working hours for the next week.
I have until next October to decide about renewing. The increased price doesn’t feel outrageous to me (I last paid $39.99 in October), but the recent thread on BusyCal and the fact that it’s available via SetApp are making me think that I might try BusyCal before renewing my Fantastical subscription.
BusyCal and BusyContacts come with a 30 day trial (from their website busymac.com). Probably the most customizable apps out there. Other than “openings”, it offers a larger feature-set than Fantastical. They offer a perpetual license (you get to keep the app forever, but get 18 months of free updates for your purchase; upgrading after 18 months is optional).
If you’re fed-up of paying altogether, Apple Calendar is not entirely terrible. Apple Contacts is OK - unusable a lot of times on the mac however with a mind of its own (there’s way way to control the sync frequency and changes don’t sync immediately).
I like Fantastical well enough – I used BusyCal for a while, but Fantastical’s natural language input was far better (this was some time ago, it may have changed).
That’s the absolute top feature for me. No. 2 is being able to open the mini window with a key press to add something, or key press and then a tab for search.
I detest looking at my calendar in Fantastical. The mini window is almost unusable for that give the number of events I have. The full view is good – but I don’t find it any better than the stock Calendar app. I just use Calendar to look at my events.
It’s nice to be able to join meetings from the menu bar, but there are other solutions for that. And I only started using it recently. Clicking a link in the event isn’t that difficult.
So really, it’s the quick and natural-language input for me.
That’s worth the $40 I’ve been paying to me. Not sure about 40% more. I bet there’s a command-line app I can use instead, and then run it via KM or Hammerspoon.
Cardhop is really good. But by the time it came along, I had written my own script to parse a line of text into a contact, and I still find that faster.
My work heavily relies on calendar usage. I am 70-80% of my day in meetings. I use Fantastical, but only because I picked it up when they had a huge sale a year ago
For my day to day work of working in my company, I don’t see the value. We’re Google Calendar driven, and there is still so much where I have to go through the web interface because Fantastical can’t do it (“suggest a time” in google as an example). Not sure they ever can, because obviously google stuff works best in the interface they created for it. Natural parsing of text is great, but hits it’s limits quick when you need to schedule a meeting with 4-5 different people, find an available room and add a meeting document.
I use the “open meeting link” a lot, but could replace that with meeter
Cardhop is odd. I actually bought it before it went to subscription, but I use it when I need to do stuff in my contacts which is almost never. Maybe once every 2-3 weeks. I’m probably not the target audience for it
Now outside of my main work, I love Fantasticals “openings” because it replaces Calendly and doesn’t cost anything more. But that was also more situational when my work at that time involved a lot of meetings with other companies.
Soooo in the end… For me I don’t think I’ll renew it. If it’s just for seeing my calendar and the occasional reschedule, Apple Calendar can do that