In the past, when I focused on iOS apps which added Outlook functionality to my iPhone, the one area I neglected to cover was that of note taking. The iPhone and iPod Touch both are able to sync with your notes in Outlook when you plug the device into your PC and perform an iTunes sync. My overarching goal, however, is to cut the cable, regardless of what device I’m using. While using the iPhone, I came across a free service called Evernote which fulfilled this goal while also adding functionality which Outlook notes just don’t do. Now that I’m working with both iOS and Android devices, it is definitely time to take a close look at the Evernote service and the corresponding mobile apps which sync with Evernote.
First, let’s look at the Evernote website, which can be found at http://www.evernote.com/. The site serves as a central repository for information. The premise is simple – Anytime you need to make note of something, whether it be text, audio, or visual, you create a note in your Evernote account and put the information there. With these notes stored in the cloud, you can access them from any computer with a web browser and an Internet connection, which is pretty much any computer on the planet you’ll touch. The free account has a set amount of monthly usage, based on the size of your notes, but I’ve yet to get anywhere near the maximum data cap for a month. You can also download and install a desktop app for your PC which gives you instant access to your notes as well as the ability to format them much like you would a Word doc.
The real fun begins when you download and install the mobile apps to your phone or tablet. Now you have access to your notes right in your pocket and, as long as you have an Internet connection, you can look up your notes or create new ones and sync them up to your account. Just created a new website account and need to remember the login? Put it in a note and sync it up to Evernote. At the grocery store and see a poster for an upcoming event you’re interested in? Take a picture and push it up to Evernote. You can even record a lecture and push the audio up to Evernote for safe keeping.
As I mentioned earlier, Evernote is a free service. You have the option to upgrade your account to Premium, which increases both the maximum monthly data allowance to 1GB and the maximum note size to 50MB, as well as adding other services to your account. The desktop and mobile apps are all free and will function with both free and Premium Evernote accounts. You can find the iOS download here, the Android download here, and the Windows desktop download here. You will also find other downloads for operating systems such as Mac OS X at the Evernote website.