Evernote is long overdue for a refresh, but the app, not the logo!
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I've been using google keep for a while and its been pretty neat. I was using Evernote for notes, but eventually I got tired of the look and it got boring for me. I like google keep because of the fact that it ties into my google account and can connect with drive, photos, etc.
I would not like Microsoft to buy Evernote and integrate it into Onenote. Onenote is a much more complete app and has nothing to gain from OneNote. Onenote had something to gain from Wunderlist acquisition, it was the userbase that Wunderlist had. Evernote has a user base that's sinking, Microsoft will not and should not acquire it. But Samsung on the other hand, has a huge hardware market share, has excellent note taking hard ware capability, but seriously lacks the first party software that userbase can trust for backwards compatibility. I think if Amazon can build a bussiness on black and white e-readers, Samsung is much more capable to manufacture, productivity oriented productivity oriented pen tablets, that run a it's own OS and Evernote productivity suite.
The new logo is hideous and I cannot find a way to replace it even after Googling refresh taskbar icons etc. OneNote won't work through a VPN, I don't like the Motion interface so I am stuck with Evernote.
Thanks Steve - great set of comments - went to check-out Notion. They have a "Team" package that is $8 per month. But it is not $8 per month it is $96 per year; it is actually $10 per month. Starting their relationship with me by lying to me seems like a bad plan. Then again, this seems to be the approach of every company now.
Hi I have been following you for a long time. I am a Civil Engineer writing from Colombia South America. I am 100% agree with your thinking. They are going to loose many subscribers because of their zero innovation features. Alvaro Vélez
I left Evernote when its abandoned support for the iPad 3. My team all use iPad 3 and we saw no reason to change. Then Evernote dropped support with no warning. I moved to scrivener. No monthly fee and a much better interface for looking at and presenting our info. Sorry Evernote but you got arrogant and complacent.
I am using Evernote free, some good features. I am Quality Assurance consultant and their tick box feature is very crusty. Cheap as chips. I have moved from iAuditor to Evernote this week. It worked well. But the tick box system leaves a lot to be desired. The tick box market is massive. Onenote tick box is better. Check out the cheap tick box feature system and then look at OneNote. Evernote need to practice risk assessments and prioritising eg security protection. I wonder if Evernote "Bench Marks" their features. If they did a better tick box system I would probably pay for it. Yes the clipper is brilliant.
There's a difference between "note-taking" and "notebooking". I need something to collate large amounts of technical material, pull it in from other sources, etc. I want to create content that looks more like this: https://kevinknowscs.github.io/VanillaJS-Demos/
When I saw the title of the Evernote blog, I thought FINALLY they are going to reveal a roadmap to dealing with some of their well-known shortcomings. As I read it, I first thought it was some kind of Dilbert-style joke. Then, I realized that despite the fact that Evernote interface is bad bordering on unusable, these guys actually had spent months sweating changes to the shape of a cartoon elephant's head. I too was waiting for new features--like the fact that simple things like for example an interface when a person with normal vision can tell whether the toggle to bold text is on or off. They are a huge company with dozens of developers and yet, the interface from Bear Notes, a tiny Italian developer, puts their interface to shame. A few features missing from this expensive app that are available via much less expensive options:
--Password protection & encryption (even after the company had to be shamed into stating that their employees wouldn't start reviewing customer's notes).
--Dark mode or themed modes for formatting
-- Formatting of simple text notes remains a nightmare.
--Ability to export notes into some kind of common format.
--Just taking a note and pasting it into an email--nope, you get a mess.
-- Mixing text and digital handwriting?--Nope.
--Decent annotation of .pdfs? The tools are simply awful and unwieldy.
--Formatting that stays consistent. Paste in a paragraph from another source and suddenly Evernote changes the format of all subsequent text to the format of whatever you pasted. It only takes 5-10 clicks to get back to where you started.
--The ability to shift a line in a bulleted outline without cutting and pasting (a la OneNote or the old and much-missed Circus Ponies Notebook)
--The ability to create a nested outline.
--Penultimate is the worst of the handwriting apps--numerous iterations have rendered it still less useful than: Notability, Goodnotes, Noteshelf, OneNote..... (you get the idea). At least the current version is somewhat usable--previous versions were so terrible that you wondered why a company would damage its reputation by releasing something so horrible.
--Evernote Clearly was a useful app that gave users the ability to read "clear" versions of web docs and then move those into Evernote. "Clearly" adding value to the Evernote experience. So... Evernote kills the app.
After all these years and hundreds of millions in VC capital and customer payments, Evernote has developed NONE of these capabilities. In truth, they are still banking on capabilities that were developed back in the Phil Libin era. Search and storage are still real strengths of the app.
This is supposed to be a note taking app, but in truth I find myself taking notes everywhere EXCEPT in Evernote. Evernote is excellent at saving and tagging, everything else is supremely mediocre--and none of the mediocre stuff (with the exception of the iOS interface) has really improved at all in the last few years, and they just keep insulting customers. Example, I am already paying their overinflated price as a premium user and they inundate me with marketing to become a business customer. What if I'm not a business? Every time they do this they are essentially saying: "We don't know anything about you and we don't care."
Maybe they are spending all their time redesigning the elephant because that is all they remain capable of. When well-funded consumer-facing companies replace actual work and excellence with meaningless blather about their "vision" and changing their logo, it is time for their VCs to install a new management team. Maybe the problem is that Evernote internally attempts to use their crappy software to run the company. Maybe if they shifted back to Microsoft Office someone could properly format a list of customer needs and share it internally in a way that the company actually works to address them. I used to recommend this software--now I am looking for alternatives. Here's some alteration that Evernote should worry about: clueless, cockeyed, customer less.
100% agree. I loved Evernote from the beginning, but I’ve tapered off my use of it significantly over the last three years or so. Largely due the things you discussed. Lack of some simple improvements.
I’m truly hoping this “new & improved” Evernote is just the first phase. Some marketing schtick just to get the Internet talking & paying attention, so their name is front & center for when they role out the real improvements.
I know, wishful thinking.
Hey Steve - I've already left and moved to Apple Notes - I was an Evernote Evangelist from day one and got may friends and colleges to sign up. But no more. I'm also watching Agenda. It's a shame the Elephant forgot which direction it was going and who it serves.
All I can say is that Evernote better be careful. Once the subscribers (including me) start jumping ship. It will be too little too late. Because by then the faith has died and all the talk, cosmetic posturing and no action will have killed it. It almost seems they are milking an established name and service for all they can get till it dies. Which sometimes happens with companies that change management or ownership in some fashion. The new stewards don't have the long term vision anymore, just a short "get it while it is good" vision. I plan to back up all my content on Evernote and look forward to dottotech advising us as to what is the next best service to move to. Be it One note or whatever. Microsoft must be rubbing their hands in glee at this situation.
If the executive at Evernote hasn't listened to this they should. Perhaps you could list your experience and position as a central figure in this space, suggest to them your interest in helping them affect positive change, for a well earned fee?
I have been an avid Evernote user for years, but totally agree with your statements. I have been looking for a good alternative that will let me do more on the mobile app, rather than always having to be tied to the desktop version!
I have been shopping around for an Evernote replacement for a while now. I agree security should be 'job one' for Evernote in this age of hacking and embarrassing data exposures. I will be off in the next 90 days and NOT be renewing my subscription unless security is strengthened. Come on Evernote, give us Strong password protection, 2FA, notebook encryption...some reason to feel safe that our data is secure in the cloud.....Your new logo and branding will look very nice, hip and up to date...in the history books of the internet.
I have been with Evernote for 9 years and have 3400+ "notes". I put that in quotes because my notes are really attachments with important documents (pdfs, photos and scans). I almost never actually take notes in the app.
Not looking good. Starting to think about a plan to get everything out. For me there is nothing else that can do what Evernote does for me. This is not good news.
Agree in all points. I have been using Evernote since 2011 and cannot live without it. I do have to say though that although the ability to password protect a notebook is not there and should), there is an ability to note protect with a passphrase. Yet, I do hope for the day that we can lock down our most important notebooks , not just one note in the notebook.
People are leaving Evernote for Apple Notes or Google Keeps? If they do, they never should have started with Evernote to begin with. I dump everything in Evernote; my thoughts, invoices I have to pay, schoolwork from my kids, emails from co-workers etc. I tag every note to give it context. If I have to look at something in a year, I tag it with the year and month I have to look at it again. Can't do that with Apple Notes, Google Keep or even Microsoft Onenote. The tags in Onenote are a joke and it doesn't have reminders, Apple notes is just a list of random notes and although Google Keep has reminders and tags, it is not much more that a fancy post-it notes webpage.
There are things I miss in Evernote, like encryption, inline reminders perhaps better inking for the Apple Pencil, but for me there is no viable alternative for Evernote at this moment.
Honestly, you're right about the lack of recent innovation, but no other company solidly covers the basics of a note taking app like evernote does. I've been an evernote subscriber for 1 day now (literally) and it is ideal. I have tried everything out there that I could find but every other app lacks majorly in some vital area. To get custom folders, custom tags, document OCR, web clipper, reminders, email notes, and multi platform all in one app, it's still a great app.
But yes, encryption would be pretty sensible. And how about that elephant ear now, huh? It's a beauty.
I paid for the premium last Dec and I don't know if I'm going to renew. I'm going to start looking at alternatives I use Google a lot for writing and tracking things for my business so I'm going to look at Google first, next will be One Note, and then Notion that you mentioned. I might still use it for the web clipper but that's free. Now I'm off to watch your Google Keep video.
Apparently, you weren't the only one unimpressed by the 'refresh', Steve. Four top execs left, 'temporary' price cuts. https://www.theverge.com/2018/9/4/17820752/evernote-premium-annual-subscription-sale-executives-depart
Very nicely stated! Hard to disagree with the comments especially people "having to use Evernote" vs. "choosing to use it" as many of us now have 10,000+ notes and exporting | importing such volume to any other app would be a big challenge.
Evernote is lucky as they have a very dedicated, engaged and caring group of users. They want it to get better, succeed and become the only productivity app for them. However, it seems like the development team is ignoring the needs and the desires of this group.
As mentioned in the video, Notion seems to be getting better and better every day. They provided the Night Theme recently which is something Evernote users have been asking for in the forums for YEARS! Yes, correct, years.
Customization and coloring is almost non-existent in Evernote while OneNote and other apps like Google Keep allows you to color code notes and customize to your liking.
Of course, encryption and security have been a big request item for many users for a long time too.
I still use it for the "Hub" of my digital system but the lack of improvement in Windows app lead me to start capturing other software options into Evernote and checking them out every so often. I am ok with the new branding and the logo as well as the marketing efforts, but the fundamental purpose of the software needs to follow suit and shows us the improvements we have been waiting for....and I think it needs to happen fairly quick before people start abandoning.
This just in...story on executive departures at Evernote, confirming what Steve says in this video that Evernote may be in death spiral. https://techcrunch.com/2018/09/04/evernote-lost-its-cto-cfo-cpo-and-hr-head-in-the-last-month-as-it-eyes-another-fundraise/amp/
My sentiments exactly! The web clipper and scanner integration are currently keeping me with Evernote, but I keep finding myself eyeballing other options. Note sharing is clumsy - unless you start spending big bucks for Evernote Business. I fear that Evernote has decided to leave the consumer market...
👍 Right you are ! I am concerned about the overall health of the company and the direction they seem to be taking. As far as I’m concerned, mobile is the future but Evernote seems really focused on the desktop/ business model. So many things they do well, but this refresh is a joke.
Guess you were wrong Steve. I tried the new Evernote Web Beta and it is awesome. I never lose faith of Evernote by creating a better product everyday and I am very happy with this new and clean version. The rebranding is amazing and it has everything to do with the company. And for me, Evernote it's the best note taking app, it has everything what is important of my life in this notebooks. So, this is my personal opinion but you can't say that Chris O'Neal are giving you socks on Christmas and you are all so disappointed just with the premium features, colors and fonts, it doesn't matter to me. There is people that doesn't pay for the premium version. I just need an app that I can write my thoughts, notes, that is easy to use and it is organized, and effective. Evernote has everything I want on a app. I can write notes and add reminders at the same time, google keep and onenote can't do those things at the same time. The sync of onenote for android is terrible, google keep is good but vague without the possibility to create notebooks instead you just can only create tags. Evernote is fast, clean and light. For me, the sync of mobile, pc and the web version are the best, they improved a lot on it recently. I love the widget that I put on my android phone, it has a dark theme also. I believe they are improving, in somewhat I can agree with you is probably they should give us real updates of its own app more quickly. But there's nothing much you can say about the rebranding of the company as you were criticizing on your video.
This is great, Steve. Evernote seems to think that people care about their brand more than their product. Honestly, their focus on brand seemed a bit of an ego thing IMO. I, too, was looking for a “new Evernote”...features and innovation. In short, they need vision. In fact, as a long time Apple user, I am loving what Satya is doing with Microsoft....they are the ones innovating.
I sincerely hope some hot shots from EN will see this video. Steve and Francesco (KeepProductive) are 2 persons that got me into EN. I am a premium user for years and am disappointed at the lack of their creativity. Password protected notebooks are being asked on their forum for years, still no news. Apart from that web clipper and search are 2 main tools for me and I hope someone catches up with them (or buys them out) so that we get some new thing. Latest "groundbreaking" things were colored tables...wow, colored tables, I was impressed..,..NOOOOT
I was so pleased to find this video. Just for the validation! I read that rebrand article, shaking my head, thinking "oh my god, the centre of my work life is now in the hands of marketers and idiots (same thing?)!"
Why is nobody mentioning it started to go down hill when Phil Libin and his top people left (or where forced out??)? I'd love an expose on what actually happened there. Why did Libin et al leave? It was as innovative as it was because of them - and the relaxed non-corporate values they brought really attracted me too.
Steve, you are so spot on in this video! I dread moving 10 years of notes out of Evernote so I probably won't, I'll leave them there even after I downgrade my account in 2020 when my subscription runs out.
There are really only two reasons I stick with Evernote 1) the excellent clipper and 2) EN's ubiquity. (So many integrations!) One Note is catching up in both areas. I'm also moving more into Milanote and Notion everyday.
Evernote is going to have a hard time keeping users if they continue to allow new, more interesting and fleet competitors to set the bar. It's a sad day when the most exciting thing Evernote has to share is a new logo. Yawn. 😴
Man, you took the words right out of my mouth.
Evernote Note security sucks. I'm a big Evernote user, but I'm looking elsewhere. If Apple Notes and Microsoft OneNote change a bit I might change from Evernote.
Me: Evernote -> DEVONthink Pro. Why? Mostly because of privacy concerns but also because the desktop client performance sucks: COULDN’T BE ANY HAPPIER!
DEVONthink Pro is such an *amazing* app, I’m totally hooked to it.
I have already pretty much switched to Notion. I started with Evernote then switched to OneNote because of the writing capability, then switched back to Evernote because it was easier to do just about everything.
Evernote and OneNote have a knack for doing stupid stuff instead of working in features that people want. Icons, fonts, rainbow pen etc...
Then I found notion, Notion does everything but hand writing, and is a pain in the ass on a slow internet connection. The search results could be a bit better but other than that, Notion is the way to go. If they keep doing what they have been doing.
Moved away from Evernote a few years ago when it became clear innovation was not their priority anymore. Have yet to find a notes app that really ticks all the boxes for me, but Zoho Notebook, of all things, has managed surprisingly well of late.
They released a podcast a few weeks ago in which the folks behind the re-branding and 'redesign' talked about how they were pumped to come in and be paid huge amounts of money to...talk about re-branding and how they felt Evernote was now 'fresh' and 'new' because they had had HOURS AND HOURS AND HOURS of meetings talking about how excited they were to come in and be paid huge amounts of money and what the corporate mission statement personally means to them and...admittedly, I didn't finish.
I have to agree here.
We’ve been asking for password protection, proper todo functions and better team communication tools for ages.
Competitors are nipping at their heels, and they’re not moving.
They need to realise it’s not “too big to fail”, but “too big must fail” if they don’t start to innovate.
These issues and many more is why for myself and my company moved away from Evernote and onto our own internal solution that is much more versatile and doesn't have the limitations that Evernote has. For anyone that is interested, we are using a WordPress backend with a few key plugins to accomplish the same, if not better, functionality of Evernote and we have Millions of notes in this system that my company access on a daily bases without any issues for the last 3 years.
To note I had been an Evernote user since the day they started.
Wow Steve... Bang on man. CEO wanted to make a statement... He just made the wrong one.
I've got over 3000 notes on Evernote and I was so excited about their growth that I went and bought stocks in their company.
After this, I'm not sure they are focused enough to priorize what we as users feel are important.
Share this to Evernote! This is not a complaining video... Its a video advocating for what I want from Evernote. If others feel this way, share it!
Keep it up Steve!
Haha. Thanks Steve, so true had the same hollow feeling. I introduced Evernote to my thirteen year old to help him with some storing of information. First thing he asked me... where can I set a password for my note...
Evernote will eventually die out. They're heading in a bad direction. I used to love it, but the innovation is dead. Nothing new. Better services are coming out. Consol.io, Notion, Bear Notes for iOS, etc.
Couldn’t agree more! Moved everything to Notion, but I’m still using Evernote as my legacy app for web clipping and email forwarding. It has stood still for years. Notion is so close to replacing Evernote for me.
You are damn right Steve! I used to advise anybody on using Evernote, now, I am using it because my whole digital documents and administration is on it. I am very concerned about how to get this data out of Evernote, as I think they will either be bought by some company who wants to gain users (look what happened to Flickr) or they go bankrupt and then what is going to happen with my data??
Again, confused and concerned about this. Thinking of moving out of Evernote Soon
Btw I definitely like your style man! this is what needed to be said, and you said it well!
Well presented observations and I find myself agreeing with you. I have recently found myself looking at competitors which cannot be a good thing as I am a long time user and have spouted support for Evernote to colleagues in the past. I hope that Evernote do keep innovating - for their own sake.
As paying subscribers get upset, the company needs to listen - or we all know what will happen. Good rant. :-)
Been an Evernote Premium user for the last 5 years, to be honest I love it's simplicity and it does what I need it to do very well, but I have to say I agree with everything you say Steve, more for the fact that if they do not innovate, they will be left behind and lose users by the bucket load and that will not only hurt them, but will be frightening for all of us users that will stay until the end as all of our work is stored inside Evernote's cloud and what happens to that information should EN ever disappear? I am not a fan of Windows and therefore do not use OneNote so will risk staying with EN until the end. Keep up the fantastic work Steve, always look forward to your videos when they come out.
You are soooo right. I am a Evernote user and customer since 6 years but since 3 years I do not use it because of those things like not being able to secure my files. Thank you for saying to Evernote that what most of their customers wanted to say since years. Greetings from Germany and have a wonderful day.
What??? Steve is bagging on Evernote? His favorite app??? Steve’s never negative! He’s Canadian for cryin’ out loud! That’s how bad Evernote is fumbling the ball. They’ve incited a Canadian to multiple counts of negativity...... and rightly so.
Dead-on analysis of the shortcomings and decline of a former innovator. They’re not dead yet, but that seems to be the goal they’re aiming for.
The problem is not that Facebook and Google are the only advertising platforms. The problem is that they are considered mainstream media and without these two, the trend of cryptocurrencies gaining legitimacy is delayed. That is right, I said delayed not blocked or prevented.
The World Has Changed.
Five years ago, when bitcoin was unknown to most people, this might have been a fatal move. Today is a different story. I recently traveled to a remote mountain town in the interior of Mexico. Everyone I met had heard about Bitcoin and eyes lit up with excitement when I ask if I could pay for lunch with bitcoin.
Today are dozens of websites dedicated to cryptocurrencies, either holding them, exchanging them or just writing about them. Probably the most effective advertising remains on Google, it is called Google Search and it is free.
If someone wants to learn about owning bitcoin or any other currency, there is a ton of educational information.
The Flipside Is Being Ignored.
Not All Regulation Is Inherently Bad.
If we examine the full spectrum of regulation to this point on a global scale there is one common target most everywhere. That is the practice of exchanges. So far there has been little or not regulation, threatened or enacted, to protect investors from loss of funds due to security breaches.
Capitulation Is A Good Sign.