Microsoft’s Project Cheshire Heads To Private Beta

Posted on November 8, 2016 by Brad Sams in Microsoft Consumer Services, Mobile, Android, iOS with 14 Comments


Microsoft is working on a new to-do style app that is currently called Project Cheshire. If that name sounds familiar, it’s because I got my hands on the app back in June and now the product is now part of a private beta.

Since its first unveiling, the app has been updated and has a bit more polish to it than what we saw previously. Also, there are iOS and Android apps and the Windows 10 desktop app is UWP too.

The app allows you to quickly set reminders and also offers up suggestions about what may be important to you as well in a simple interface. As you would expect, all items sync across the different iterations of the app.

What’s interesting about this app, aside from that fact that it is barebones and doesn’t really have any compelling feature, is that the company recently purchased Wunderlist. That app is another to-do style application that had 13 million active users, at the time of acquisition, and does the exact same thing as this application does but much more elegantly. Of course, this could be an early version of the next update to Wunderlist but why they would tear it down to rebuild it seems a bit foolish.

Posted below is a gallery of the new app but there is no word on when it will be released.

Thanks for the tip anon!

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Comments (14)

14 responses to “Microsoft’s Project Cheshire Heads To Private Beta”

  1. 241

    I agree with Brad's assessment. I use Wunderlist now and like it. Though it has not seen many changes since Microsoft bought it.

  2. 6958

    I just hope this app finally united Microsoft to-do lists. I have Cortana Reminders, Outlook Reminders and Wunderlist reminders.

  3. 8117

    Seems pointless but perhaps they are doing this to test some cloud/backend component.

  4. 8250

    Project Cheshire ​is actually developed by the Wunderlist team. It is a planned successor which shall include all Wunderlist functionality (current beta currently lacks a few features) and combine it with the Microsoft/Office services and infrastructure. It is actually the Wunderlist team which sends out the invitations for the Project Cheshire  cloesed beta to selected Wunderlist power users. You can find some screenshots of the sent out invitations by the Wunderlist team in the link below: 

    • 2507

      In reply to evil-twin:

      This is what I wanted to hear! Hope you're right about it! It should be a feature within O365, all versions/tiers

    • 8182

      In reply to evil-twin:

      Exactly! A rewrite is probably necessary in order to get those integrations into the Office 365 platform right and they probably also wanted to start over in order to be better able to support multiple mobile platforms. If I were to venture a guess, I'd say that the codebases for the old Wunderlist are probably not very aligned and have to be maintained separately. So yes right now it looks very rudimentary, but expect it to pick up soon in order to take over from Wunderlist. Hopefully they will let us import tasks from Wunderlist when the day comes...

      There is huge opportunity in this project. A standardized platform for tasks is something I have wanted Microsoft to do for at least a decade now, Exchange/Outlook just was never going to cut it, although back then I wanted it to be part of Windows. With such a platform in place in the cloud, they can start to integrate with a host of other services and applications such as Sharepoint, Project (which they need to redo too btw), Planner, OneNote, Exchange/Outlook, Word/Excel/PowerPoint, Teams, VSTS, Cortana and even third parties.

      My concern is whether they would be able to make it complex enough to encompass a breadth of different uses while keeping it simple enough for daily tasks. I mean, how do you handle comments? Say a task was created in planner, and show up in this new app, when assigned to you, does it show the comments from Planner, or is it just a link to the Planner task?

      Perhaps I am hoping too much, but dang it, let me stay in the hope, at least for now.

  5. 1561

    I do love Wunderlist, but it's a bit of a Skype situation at the moment. There are these weird paid tiers for business users and groups that don't quite fit in with the Office 365 strategy. Plus, it definitely has its own style going on. It's one of those tools that you'd never know was owned by Microsoft. Maybe Cheshire is aiming to bring Wunderlist into the Office 365 fold, much as they've done with Skype Teams, now Microsoft Teams.

    I like the idea of using Cortana's NUI to set reminders, but I don't necessarily want my tasks split between her notebook, Wunderlist, and other tools I use. I seems weird to silo a task just because I use a specific app to create it.

    At Ignite, lots of people were asking about this kind of thing. Microsoft's response was that they were looking at ways to let the team use whatever task management tools they preferred, but also to let you as an individual drive your reminders to separate tools like Wunderlist or Cortana. Maybe Cheshire and tools like Flow are designed to deliver on that kind of functionality.

  6. 2394

    I wish I knew what I wanted in a to-do app. But for me, now, it's like obscenity: I'll know a great to-do app when I see it.

  7. 3098

    What if... this app isn't actually about what we see (another todo list app, yay) but about some underlying technology?


    Seeing it is on multiple OS already even in this early stage of development, it is maybe about cross platform UWP Apps (powered by some of the Xamarin Technology) or something similar? Just some loud thinking, no actual source for this.

  8. 4801

    This is becoming insane.

    4 services/products from Microsoft 

    'project 2016


    MS Planner/Groups




    will Cheshire bring Wunderlist into the O365 fold or is MS starting another tool due many cooks in the kitchen


    office is under 1 team

    what team controls planner?

    is Project part of Office team?

    Wunderlist is out of Germany


    lots of silos..very bad for users

  9. 8391

    They do have a lot of solutions, but they don't have a windows 10 app for tasks from a 365 or account outside outlook. This complete the mail, calendar, people apps with tasks. 

  10. 5234

    Here's a list:

    1)  Clean up missing images in this article.

    2)  #firetheeditor.