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Notability for iPad

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Just bought Notability for iPad....

Evernote, I really love you, I was loyal for more than a year and a half.

Springpad didn't do this to me....


Typing, handwriting, pictures embedded, audio recording, colors, flexibility, pdf...

And it is soooo intuitively simple...

Evernote, please say you have this coming soon: handwriting, handwriting on embedded pictures - it is so useful for meeting notes...

Please say you are replacing the evercrashing iPad version with something more than cardex view

Guys, iPad has to be your top priority, this is The tool for professionals.

Having Notability for a week I have gone COMPLETELY PAPERLESS.

It still lacks the Tags system for me to implement GTD as Evernote allows, thats the big minus, but they've promised it's on the design board

Guys, I LOVE EVERNOTE and I also love competition. Please, improve, you have to and you can, too!

Good luck!


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  • Level 5*

I agree about Notability being a top-notch product for a very reasonable price. It really shows the best of what you can get with apps on iOS. However, Evernote is more a platform than an app, and I don't think that the two are comparable in most respects. It really doesn't scale up very well, lacks anything more than rudimentary search, and has no counterparts on other devices / operating systems.

Still, it does address a need out there to use the iPad for reading, typing, writing, recording, listening, photographing, etc. Personally, I would like to see Evernote accomplish this with separate apps (Evernote Photo, Evernote Recording, Evernote Penultimate, etc.) that integrate with the main Evernote app in order to keep it small, nimble, and free of bugs. Whatever Evernote does, though, it needs to deal with this handwriting stuff as soon as possible :)

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  • 3 months later...

I really wish Evernote would work out some deal to integrate Notability.  Penultimate doesn't cut it.  I need to be able to zoom in to have sufficient room on EACH page.  Using Penultimate with my iPad mini, i can get very few sentences per page.  It's not useful for note taking in meetings.  With Notability, I can zoom in and use my iPad as an actual notebook replacement...BUT it doesn't sync well with Evernote...Please Evernote, don't make me choose between you and Notability.  Integrate them ... your redesigned Penultimate doesn't cut it. 

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I think Notability has a big problem: the files it creates are way too heavy (for eg. 10 pages pdf ---> 10 MB sound clips excluded!) 


Penultimate at the moment is not an option, I agree. 


I use PDF expert, Remarks, UPAD, Notes Plus, Grafio: but I am not 100% satisfied with any

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  • 1 month later...

Hi - I agree, I use Notability and have tried penultimate. Penultimate does not have a zoom feature - this prevents me using it as it is very inefficient. Notability is not prefect but much better. Integration with Evernote (ie being able to post directly to Evernote and search hand writing would be awesome

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  • 1 month later...


As Mshparber, I m a huge fan of Evernote. I open it dozens of time a day. Can t live without it for my personal and business life.

I am looking for some ways of improving the "capturing note" experience though.

I tried penultimate but it has very low feature IMO. Notability seems to adress my needs in a much better way; handwriting without a pen on a tablet can t be done without a decent zoom feature.

Evernote/Penultimate team, is it on your roadmap?

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I know I've posted this in other areas of the forum - specifically the Penultimate threads - but for those looking for alternatives, have a look at Notes Plus.


I switched from Penultimate to Notability, and was mighty impressed, as are others in this thread.


However, after seeing several of the Med Students I teach (who were the ones who put me onto Notability) switching to Notes Plus, I made the switch myself as well.


And - WOW!  If you think Notability has features, you should check out Notes Plus.  It even has a built-in browser that allows you so select chunks of a page and "flick" it over to your notebook - fabulous for research or working up a lesson, assignment, etc.  Its note-taking features, though - the main reason for the app - are absolutely superb.  The palm protector works a treat, the zoom feature works beautifully, the writing is oh-so-responsive, it takes voice notes, and it syncs via Dropbox.  It doesn't link directly to Evernote, but it has Email out, so I just email notes that I want in Evernote to my Evernote email address.  Which, for me at least, is better than Penultimate syncing absolutely everything.  In both directions.


So, I use Notes Plus as a note-taking, scribbling, diagrams, and general writing pad app, while I use Evernote for storing vast amounts of information much of which is random and unrelated between different notebooks.  And I can send notes from Notes Plus to Evernote on a completely selective basis by email.  I've set up my default notebook in Evernote as a sort of inbox, as I also have it linked to other apps as well (such as Zite, and my iPad browser, iCab Mobile), so anything I send to Evernote from anywhere goes to the "Inbox" notebook.  I can then sort it out in Evernote, tag it, and put it into whatever notebook I want.


Works for me... :)  But check out Notes Plus on the iPad - I use it with the Hand stylus most of the time too, which is also highly recommended.


And no - I'm not on the payroll or commission for either Notes Plus or Handstylus.com :D

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  • 3 months later...

I've been using Evernote since 2006? 2005? 2004?  I don't remember for sure. There was a gap in my usage when I switched back to Mac in 2007. At that time there was no Evernote for Mac. Notablility looks like Evernote for Windows did years ago! I am very tempted to jump ship. It reminds me how much I miss the old Evernote and how far the new Evernote still has to go. Addons like Skitch are really just hacks to add functionality that used to be available within Evernote...functionality that was implemented much better in the old Evernote than Skitch.

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  • Level 5*

Notes Plus is pretty nice overall, but for my use case, it is not so great. The handwriting doesn't work well, and my letters get modified in unsightly ways. It is something I have been reporting for years, but it remains an issue. In particular, my "e" is always shortened so that the letter doesn't complete. This happens less, and sometimes not at all, in other apps. For me, this kind of stuff is really important in a handwriting app, and despite many wonderful improvements to Notes Plus over the years, the handwriting remains unacceptable (for my use case).

Penultimate does a better job with handwriting, but without a zoom box, it is a non-starter for me. I also need to be able to annotate PDFs with it, and without this function, it has no place in my workflow. Personally, I have no interest with syncing it to my Evernote account, though I can see why some people would. I want to put my final note into Evernote as a PDF, and the value in Evernote (for me) is to add text to a note with attachments so that I can contextualize it. As long as I cannot do that with Penultimate, it won't fit my needs.

GoodNotes is my favorite app at the moment. It has great handwriting and I like how it works. I am currently re-evaluating all of my handwriting apps, though, to see if any have improved since I last checked in with them. It will be interesting to see how GoodNotes stacks up.

As for the lost functionality of Evernote (I haven't seen that, and I have been using it for several years now), and the comparison with Notability, they don't really seem to be in the same use category for me. I guess I am unable to see how I would deal with tens of thousands of notes in Notability. For me, Notability is a handwriting app that enables me to get my handwritten notes into Evernote (or into my regular files) and not a replacement (by any stretch of the imagination) for Evernote. Heck, it doesn't even exist on the Mac.

Skitch? It seems so totally different than the kind of functionality Evernote has had in the past (are you thinking of inking in Windows?) that I am not sure how it seems less than Evernote used to be. At any rate, I currently use the first version of Skitch (on the Mac) and haven't upgraded, because it lost a lot of important features I need -- I can see the comparison of the two Skitch versions as a valid point, but perhaps I was unaware of Skitch-like functionality that was in earlier iterations of Evernote.

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I've been using Evernote since 2006? 2005? 2004?  I don't remember for sure. There was a gap in my usage when I switched back to Mac in 2007. At that time there was no Evernote for Mac. Notablility looks like Evernote for Windows did years ago! I am very tempted to jump ship. It reminds me how much I miss the old Evernote and how far the new Evernote still has to go. Addons like Skitch are really just hacks to add functionality that used to be available within Evernote...functionality that was implemented much better in the old Evernote than Skitch.




EN-the-Windows-only-app is a very different animal from EN-the-service.  Comparing the two is pretty fruitless.


FWIW, if EN-the-Windows-only-app had not evolved into EN-the-service, there would be no EN at all today. IOW, you're EN 1.x/2.x did not suffer b/c EN evolved into a service.  EN 1.x/2.x would be dead regardless.  However, since some folks at EN wanted to retain their jobs & had a vision, they evolved it into EN the service that has been far more successful than the original EN-Windows-only-app ever was.

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Hi Michael, If you need a good tool for send handwriting notes to EN, you can try Noteshelf. With Noteshelf you can send one or more pages from your document to EN. With Penultimate/notabilty/notesplus/goodnotes etc ...you can't. You have to send all notebook.

I'm using EN for my job, I'm on field all day long and the faster way for me to take notes is to take photos and and text notes with EN and after to write my notes on photos with skitch.

I've tried to take notes, on field using handwriting app with zoom, without zoom....but I can't. I'm faster with keyboard.

I think that EN for ios is too slow...I need to take the note now...not after 10/15 sec...also I wish EN camera witk antishake like JotNot or Camera+...

Is impossible to have the perfect notes app?

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Please make a deal with Notability so that we users can have the best experience. Notability is a top-of-the-line product and I don't see how you make make it any better. I've been using it for a year now, but I'd like to be able to search all my notes like my friends do with the Evernote platform.


I'm a veterinary student and I think Med students would agree with me that if these two application were able to be compatible it would make clinics SO MUCH BETTER! We compile our own notes, pdfs, audio, drawings, etc. over four years so that when we're really seeing patients we can have an easy reference to access information and learn the most from our experience to better help our patients in the long run. 4 years of paper notes....do you know how many binders and trees that is?!? All of that can now be stored in your iPad that you can carry around the hospital. If only software developers knew what their consumers really want and need.  So here I am telling you.


It's frustrating that this is such a close and realistic possibility, but that it might not happen before I really need it. PLEASE MAKE THIS HAPPEN ASAP :)


thank you.

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Thought I would raise this thread again, I'm having all the same problems going paperless and finding a good app for worksheets for each client/project I take on.


Ive been using Noteshelf, very nice, but has recently stopped exporting to EN. Tried Notepad+, same problem and not as easy to organise notes compared with Noteshelf.


Notability is OK, but EN doe not present as a destination, needs more clicks to export.


Finally, I wish notes could be merged on iPad by drag and drop, this is a big need.

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  • 1 month later...

I have Penultimate, Noteshelf, Noteledge, Notability, and Notes Plus. Of them all, I've used Notes Pllus the most, but the latest update really rewrote the UI. I paid for both the Notes Plus app and its $2.99 add on to convert handwriting to text. It does a good job of translating my scribbles into text. I also like how Notes Plus stores both the ink and the conversion, and lets me choose which to display. In the case of recognized text, Notes Plus lets me correct the text.


Lately I've tried Notability because it was recommended by others. I like its interface too, and the fact it syncs notes between the iPad and its iPhone counterpart. Yes, Notes Plus isn't universal, so I can't use it on iPhone. (Correct me if I'm wrong).


I would be happy if Notability could at least use Evernote instead of iCloud for storage. Maybe this comment is better suited to the Notability forum.

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  • 1 year later...

As a hospital department director and doc, I use notability hourly during my office days, for everything from jotting down notes while I'm on the phone, to brainstorming and meeting notes.  I take pictures of equipment or products and jot down notes on the picture.  Evernote is relegated to less than daily for web-clipping and storing receipts.   I love the idea of making evernote my hourly go-to app for all my productivity needs, so I echo all the other posters and request compatibility and seamless interface.  

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