Microsoft plans to kill off Wunderlist — frustrating fans of the wildly popular to-do list app, which it acquired two years ago.
On Wednesday, the American tech giant announced To-Do — a new to-do-list and note-taking app. It’s built by the same team who worked on Wunderlist, Microsoft says, and it’s a direct replacement: “Once we are confident that we have incorporated the best of Wunderlist into To-Do, we will retire Wunderlist.”
In other words: At some point in the not-too-distant future, Wunderlist is getting shut down.
Back in June 2015, Microsoft acquired the startup behind Wunderlist — for between $US100 and $US200 million, The Wall Street Journal reported at the time. After letting Wunderlist operate as an independently branded product for two years, it looks like Microsoft now wants to integrate the team’s work more closely, to the disappointment of some fans of the app.
To-Do is currently in a public “preview,” and lacking some functionality. There’s no ability to share lists, for example, and there’s not yet apps available for Android, Mac, or iPad.
Microsoft buying popular independent productivity apps only to shut them down is becoming a bit of a pattern. After acquiring Sunrise, a buzzy calendar app in 2015, it shut it down in May 2016, merging its Sunrise and Outlook calendar apps.
The company is clearly anxious not to alienate Wunderlist users with the closure, and emphasises how Wunderlist’s functionality has made its way into To-Do. “Today’s To-Do Preview would not have been possible without the support and input of Wunderlist fans over the last six years. In the coming months, we’ll bring more of the favourite elements of Wunderlist into the To-Do experience, adding features such as list sharing, apps for Mac, iPad and Android tablet, as well as additional integrations with other Microsoft services,” wrote Ori Artman, general manager of To-Do, in a blog post.
“Once we are confident that we have incorporated the best of Wunderlist into To-Do, we will retire Wunderlist. While the name and icon may change, the team that brought you Wunderlist continues on. We look forward to making To-Do even more useful, intuitive and personal.”
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Microsoft has bought and killed off the only two organizational services I ever really got into — Sunrise and Wunderlist
— Jon Russell (@jonrussell) April 20, 2017
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