What’s new in RescueTime: More power, faster reporting, and a year’s worth of new features!

How did it become December already? 

If you’re anything like us, the last 12 months have been a blur of work, life, and everything in between. 

Yet in that rush to get through your days, it’s easy to forget just how much you’ve accomplished in a year. This is why one of our favorite things to do in December is to slow down, step away, and look back at the big picture.

As so many famously productive people have said, we overestimate what we can do in a day and underestimate what we can accomplish in a year. 

2019 has been one of the biggest years for new features and major changes at RescueTime. In case you missed any, here’s the big list of what we’ve been up to in the last few months.

Find the features you need from RescueTime in 2020

Many of the features we’re covering here are only available to RescueTime Premium users. Start your FREE 14-day trial today!

Better, faster, stronger: Major back-end updates mean your reports just got lightning-quick

RescueTime deals with billions of hours of data every year, which can mean that opening reports that span longer time periods (like monthly, quarterly, or yearly) can understandably take some time. 

But we like it fast. 

Over the past few months, the RescueTime development team has conducted a major upgrade of our backend services. While your dashboard and RescueTime tools won’t look any different, they’ll certainly feel different. 

Faster reporting. Faster trends. And more opportunities for us to build the cool new features you’ve been asking for.

Along with a major boost in speed, we’ve added some updates to reports and other core features:

  1. You can now email a report to multiple people. Head to any report and click Export / Share and you’ll now be able to add multiple email addresses. 
  2. Hide work hours on reports, dashboard, and date picker when they’re not set. Not everyone uses our Work Hours feature. If this is you, you’ll no longer see it on your reports and dashboard to keep a cleaner look. 

Got ideas? We’ve added a public feature request board!

Our ultimate goal at RescueTime is to build the product you want to use. Which is why you can now add your feature requests to a public board here.

Go wild! We want to hear what the ultimate version of RescueTime is to you.

Binge-mode: New educational videos walk you through RescueTime’s best features

One of the things we consistently hear from our users is that they’re finding new and exciting ways to use RescueTime. While that’s great to hear, it also sometimes means some of our powerful features are being missed. 

To help you get the most out of your RescueTime account, we spent the last few minutes creating quick video tutorials for popular features and workflows. 

Check out the new How To section on our support page to learn how to set work hours, change a category, export reports, create alerts, add offline time and highlights and more. 

Become a RescueTime power user

The RescueTime Productivity Challenge: We launched our first-ever in-depth training course

Speaking of things we consistently hear from users, many of you have been asking for years for more in-depth training on how to be more productive by using RescueTime.

That’s why we’re excited to launch The RescueTime Productivity Challenge, our first-ever in-depth training course. 

Over four weeks of video lessons, interactive exercises, and custom reporting, you’ll learn how to:

  • Discover where your time actually goes each day
  • Optimize your daily schedule using personal data
  • Build powerful workplace habits and workflows that rebuild your focus
  • Banish distractions, overcome procrastination, and feel more motivated every day

Best of all, you’ll use RescueTime (plus some cool new custom reports) to track your progress and see yourself become more productive. 

The course kicks off on January 6th (but you can take it at your own pace). Find out more and sign up today! 

Join the Challenge!

Connect RescueTime to your life: Easier access to all our apps and integrations + support for Vivaldi and Opera

From the start, we’ve tried to make RescueTime work where you do. This means supporting all modern operating systems, mobile devices, and browsers. 

Over the last few months, we’ve worked hard to bring full RescueTime support to Vivaldi and Opera. This means you’ll be able to accurately track how you spend your time on specific sites and be able to block distractions like social media, news, and entertainment using FocusTime

As our stable of RescueTime apps and integrations continues to expand, we also redesigned our download page so you can quickly find the one that’s right for you. 

Check out the Get RescueTime page to browse all of our apps, tools, and integrations. 

Get RescueTime where you work

A look back at 2019: RescueTime for your Calendar, new designs, and more!

As we said before, it’s easy to underestimate what you can do in a year. And that was definitely the case when we started looking through our feature releases from the past 12 months. 

Check out our highlight reel and see what you missed!

RescueTime for your calendar + scheduled FocusTime sessions

Calendars are the original time management tool. Unfortunately, your calendar only tells you how you want to spend your time. Not how you actually did.

That’s why we decided to launch a RescueTime integration with Google Calendar and Outlook

Tens of thousands of people now use RescueTime on their calendar to see key RescueTime stats right from their calendar, including total device time, a summary of your daily goal progress, productivity pulse, and a direct link to your full daily report. 

But that’s not all. We added multiple calendar support for people whose calendars run their day. As well as the ability to schedule FocusTime sessions right from your calendar.

As a premium user, adding #focustime to your event title or description will automatically trigger FocusTime for its duration. (I love using this for focused sessions at the start of the day!)

Get RescueTime for your Calendar

RescueTime for Slack gives you more control over your daily focus

As one of the most popular chat apps out there, Slack does a great job of bringing teams together. But there’s a downside to all that connectivity. Frictionless communication means it’s easier than ever to get interrupted or distracted when you’re in a state of flow.

With the new RescueTime for Slack integration, we created an easy way to tell your team what you’re working on and protect your focus when you need it.

  • Automatically update your status when you’re focused on specific tasks. Build connections (and fight interruptions) by showing teammates what you’re working on.
  • Customize your Slack status for individual categories (and add emoji!) Set custom Slack statuses based on what you’re currently focused on.
  • Trigger do-not-disturb mode when you’re focused on your most important work. Automatically block Slack messages when you’re focused on your most important work.
  • Block Slack notifications when you start a FocusTime session. Give yourself total control by automatically silencing Slack notifications during FocusTime sessions.

Get RescueTime for Slack

New Focus Tools give you deeper insights into your state of flow 

Our focus this past year has been all about focus. And while RescueTime does a good job at showing you when you were focused in the past, active and immediate feedback on your attention in the moment has been a crucial missing piece of focus.

This year, we launched three new key tools to help you track your focus when you need it most including updated Day Timers, a new VS Code integration, and our Slack integration.

Our new, simple extension for Visual Studio Code shows your total software development time as well as how focused you currently are on the app on a scale of 1–5.

Learn more about our Focus Tools

A brand new look for the RescueTime Website and FocusTime pages

There comes a time in every company’s life where you have to take a long, hard look in the mirror and realize it’s time for something new. And after 5+ years with the same homepage, we decided it was time for a makeover. 

We spent months stripping back our homepage and clarifying all the amazing features and benefits you get from using RescueTime. (Shout out to the incredibly talented Francesca Buchko for her beautiful illustration work.) 

And speaking of long-overdue updates, we released not one. Not two. But three new FocusTime block pages you can choose from as well as an updated Settings page to make it easier to block the pages that distract you the most!

Two of our new FocusTime block pages. You can also select an updated version of our “classic” design.

Check out the new RescueTime

Dashboard updates make it easier to find the data that matters most to you!

The RescueTime Dashboard is your headquarters for productivity. And we want to make sure that it’s easy (and obvious) for you to find the data you need to build better habits and be more productive.

Over the past year, we’ve made a few changes to the dashboard to help out. 

  • Quickly toggle between just Work Hours and all of your time on your dashboard and reports. If you want to just see your working time, you can now do that in a button on your main dashboard, reports, and in the date picker. 
  • Use hours and minutes to update your daily goals. We changed our Goals from fractions of an hour to hours and minutes. This way, you can get clear about not wanting to spend more than 1 hour and 14 minutes a day on social media.
  • Emojis everywhere! You can now use emoji pretty much everywhere you can imagine in RescueTime from Highlights to Goals to Alerts to Category and User names. 

Mobile app updates: Dark Mode, Weekly Reports, and Goals

Both our iOS and Android apps got some big updates over the past year. 

With the release of iOS 13, your iPhone and iPad finally support Dark Mode. And so does RescueTime (for both iOS and Android!) 

RescueTime for ios darkmode

Not only that, but we’ve also added Weekly Reports to our iOS and Android apps.

Every Sunday (or Monday depending on your settings), you’ll be able to access your weekly stats (from both mobile and desktop) directly from the RescueTime mobile app. 

Finally, you can now set, change, and delete Goals directly from your phone, including screentime goals to help you take control of your mobile time.

Get RescueTime for your mobile device

Here’s to a productive 2020!

Thanks for joining us this past year on our journey to being more productive, finding more focus, and spending time on the right things. We’ll be spending the holidays taking a much-needed rest and dreaming up new features to help you stay focused and happy in 2020!

Got ideas? Let us know what you’d like to see from RescueTime in the new year in the comments below.

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Jory MacKay

Jory MacKay is a writer, content marketer, and editor of the RescueTime blog.

11 comments

  1. When do you plan to finish “Compare your time to other people like you”? From time to time I try to find reports of other people for reference. I tried Google and Facebook, I looked for RescueTime forum. But none of these brought me meaningful results. I don’t like to be alone with my reports.

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