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GrumpyMonkey

UNWELCOME / BROKEN / DESIRED "FEATURES" (Mainly iOS)

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UNWELCOME / BROKEN / DESIRED "FEATURES" (Mainly iOS)
 
Hi. The iOS app is looking pretty nice, and I am pleased with it overall :)
 
There is a "but," coming, of course. BUT, there are several major and minor changes I'd like to see :) I hope that you will consider implementing them in future releases. These suggestions are a mix of (1) unwelcome features I'd rather not see again, (2) broken features I'd like to see fixed, and (3) non-existent features I'd like to see exist. For reference, I am working on a 2016 9.7" iPad Pro running iOS 9.3.5.
 
For the missing images (there are a bunch I didn't bother uploading to the forum), see my shared note : 20160909 エバーノート evernote unwelcome - broken - desired features
 
1) Intrusive messages
  • I would prefer not to have any messages interrupt my work. I've requested their removal ever since they were introduced a few years ago. However, if Evernote is going to keep them around for some reason, please at least give users a way to dismiss them. In this case (see image in shared note), I am on an airplane without Internet access -- the message is killing me with kindness by "kindly" informing me that I cannot access everything, but leaving this message here for the duration of a long international flight is not helpful.  
  • Just for "fun," here is another nagging message (see image in shared note). Yes. I know how to use the Pencil. I think I've seen this so many times now, I might have memorized it. Can "Premium" members get the option (maybe in the Web settings?) to turn off the nagging? I had to take my computer in for repairs, and I'll have to install Evernote again when I get it back -- more nagging messages on OSX to interrupt my work :( Once or twice is OK, I guess, but it's been years of these messages on multiple devices. Then, there is the iPhone 7 coming out next week and... more nagging! Let's come up with a solution for the problem this year before I have to go through the installation song and dance again :)
 
2) Offline Notebooks
  • For many years now, I have been requesting that offline notebooks be downloaded more quickly. I don't think it should take 10 hours or so to get about 8GB downloaded when I have a fast optical fiber Internet connection that is capable of downloading several GB an hour. I was told in the past that Evernote is not throttling the data. OK. Maybe not, but I don't know how else to explain the slow speed. Whatever it is, I think that it would be nice if It could be accelerated. If not for everyone, then at least for Premium users. Maybe this would help prevent me from getting the intrusive message mentioned in #1 above, because everything would be on mu device.
 
3) iPad Pro keyboard problem
  • The iPad Pro keyboard is not working properly in the title field. Please see ticket number ?? for more information. 
 
4) Camera cannot trim properly
  • I have been unable to successfully trim any photos taken with Evernote. It looks OK, but then it is not when it gets saved. Otherwise, I am pretty happy with how well the camera works. Keep up the good work :)
 
5) Display PDFs inline
  • I have a memory of a time in the past when I could see PDFs displayed inline. Now, it is very difficult to see what is contained in them. For some reason, we can get a thumbnail in the list of notes, but not a peek of anything within the note. Then, I can open the PDF, but can't take notes anywhere. Ugh. See #9 for a solution. I don't want to annotate. I want to take notes.
 
6) Search terms highlighted in PDFs (English)
  • Search is clunky in English. You enter a search term, get a list of notes, select the one you think you might want, and then you have to re-enter the search (no longer displayed anywhere) to search inside of a PDF. It used to be easier, in my memory.
 
7) Search terms highlighted in PDFs (Japanese)
  • In addition to the search improvement suggested above in #6, Japanese is broken, as far as I can tell. I don't know if this is an indexing problem or something else. Whatever it is, It makes Evernote quite ineffective for Japanese. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn't. 
  • Specifically, there are three unpleasant steps to complete an unsatisfactory search. First, search. 
  • Second, if you are offline, get this intrusive message (See #1 above). But, there seem to be some hits, so let's tap on one.
  • Third, try to look inside the PDF for anything. No hits, even though there are instances inside the PDF, and it seems to be indexed properly. A search for the term with wildcards (*受洗*) won't change the final results when searching inside the PDF either.
    • Is this because I am offline? If so, why can I search and find some things, but not others?
      •  The first screenshot shows Evernote. 
      • The second shows a location in the PDF with the term (受洗). 
      • The third shows a screenshot of the same location easily found by GoodReader (a PDF reader on iOS).
 
(see image in shared note)
 
 
8) Some PDFs cannot be opened at all
  • This problem has been around for at least a month, probably longer. See ticket 1774692 (originally filed with the Japanese CS). I continue to get this message with multiple files. 
 
9) A Request for Tabs or Windows
  • We have split screens on the iPad now (finally), and Evernote takes advantage of this feature to play friendly with other apps, but a lot of my data is (naturally) in Evernote, and I'd like to view it while modifying or creating notes. Could we have some way to open a new tab or window?
 
10) Insufficient sort options
  • This is another oldy, but a goody. Windows has the most sort options, Mac has fewer, and iOS only has two. Two. That is actually down from three a few years ago. Ideally, I'd like to at least get a ascending/descending option. When you have tens of thousands of notes, it's not fun to try and find things you know are at the bottom of the list. 
    • Please don't say this is only for "power users." If you are going to have us pay for 100,000 notes (I think it ought to be more) and 10GB a month of uploads (this is a nice number, but without selective sync, a looming issue for me), I think it is in your best interests to accomodate users who actually take advantage of this.
 
11) Reincarnate the mobile site or "fix" the current one
  • We've had the mobile site in the past as a last resort if something goes wrong with the app (see #8 above for just one of many examples). That suddenly disappeared one day a while ago. It came back now and then afterwards, but now it seems to be dead again. Please bring it back for good or make the current website compatible with mobile.
    • Yes, I am aware the mobile site was rarely used, not especially robust, and a pain to maintain. But, when you cannot access your notes because the app is broken, what are you supposed to do? 
    • Yes, I know that it would be ideal if the app worked properly, but it never has (there are always some bugs, right?), and we don't live in that fantasy world. Certainly, Apple doesn't, and at least some of the "bugs" in Evernote are due to Apple breaking stuff on their end, too. 
    • Yes, I am aware that this is a list of iOS requests, but the mobile version is part of the deal, in my opinion -- please make allowances for contingencies.
    • Yes, I am aware that the current website is "designed" to be broken on mobile (not only does it not deliver a nice experience, they went a step further and try to block you from using it at all on Safari -- there are workarounds, but why?), and isn't supposed to work with mobile, but that is... not a good idea. It reminds me so much of Raman's "Universe of Fancy Colored Paper." I strongly recommend designing a web version that works on mobile, which is what many of us use far more than the desktop, but if Evernote is adamant about designing for shrinking audiences (sorry to be so harsh, but that is what is happening when you deliberately exclude a huge number of devices -- a majority I would guess), then please reincarnate the mobile version.
 
12) Encryption 
  • It's been several years since the Snowden leaks, many more since even independent app developers have included robust encryption options in their products (VoodoPad was an early one), and even more since I (and others) began requesting this. I suggest enabling us to do it in iOS. For ideas, look to competitors (DEVONthink or OneNote), or third-party apps like "Saferoom" for Evernote. I would like to see an encrypted notebook, if possible. Surely, you have stuff in your Evernote accounts you'd like to keep more secure, right? Maybe photos from that Evernote party where you drank a little too much and danced on the tables :)
 
13) Spell-check
  • Where is it? If I tap on a word, I get the correct spelling as a pop-up, but I have to search for them myself, because the app doesn't indicate which words might be incorrect. Please consider adding this feature. 
 
14) Note Links
  • [ EDIT: Found it buried in the share menu] Is there a way to generate note links (internal, not public ones)? This request is another oldy, but a goody.
 
15) Offline notebook size / downloaded amount
  • Please resurrect the numbers. I would like more information density. The app used to tell us how big a notebook was (approximately) and how much was downloaded (approximately). Now, it tells us that there is a slow moving green line. That's it. I have no idea if I even have enough space on my iPad to accomodate the notebooks that I am downloading. And, it seems to indicate that it is all downloaded now that I am offline, but it almost certainly is not (there was some more white and the green line was still slowly moving, whatever that means), and some stuff isn't appearing...
  • Yes, I am aware of the desire for simplicity, but I have very little sympathy for folks who find the numbers information overload. If Evernote really wants to bring in those people who fear numbers and information, I recommend a plain vanilla default setting (heck, go ahead and remove more stuff if you want) and an information density "pro" setting (I can suggest lots more numbers and data that I want to see). As an added benefit, you can address #1 by not nagging "pro" users with messages they don't want to see. Frankly, it boggles my mind that the numbers on the offline notebooks (really, only accessible to Premium users anyhow) were a step too far, but constant nagging is OK (#1 is only the most abusive version, because it cannot be dismissed, but there are so many more every time I have to reinstall the app). 
 
16) Handwriting
  • I'm glad you have Apple Pencil support. Good on you for being so quick to implement it. I really like this highlighter -- best one I've ever used on the iPad :) But... the input recognition is awful. Most of the time (often on the right side?) it doesn't even register input. I just haven't found a use for it in its current incarnation. If it would stop messing around with my characters (I think Penultimate started this trend of "fixing" my writing by modifying lines after I have written them), have better palm rejection, and recognize input I'd be happy to use it.

(see image in shared note)

 
17) Offline, but not
  • Sometimes, even when a notebook long ago fully downloaded offline, I discover stuff that is not available offline. See 2 and 15 above for more offline stuff. Presumably, this is ine of the key pay features, but it's really not working well, in my opinion. Me and my Evernote offline notebooks are not an effective team (cue death-bot from Oblivion).
 
 
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18) Partial notes

  • I seem to have successfully uploaded many images across several notes using my iPhone. And, my iPad seems to have found the notes and begun downloading the content. But, only partially. No amount of syncing gets it all. I cannot check the web to see if it is all there (see #11 above), but either way (there or not) something has gone wrong somewhere between making the note in iOS on the iPhone and downloading the note in iOS on the iPad. I am trying to send a bug report at the moment, but I cannot seem to reliably connect with the Evernote servers. Everything else online is working today except for that (many messages telling me the server is unavailable).
  • It would be nice to have the diagnostic tools / information to get this worked out. Did all of my stuff really get uploaded (the sync appears complete on the iPhone, it spins, and it stops)? Did the iPad download it all (same thing, but the notes are incomplete, and there are no numbers for the offline notebooks to tell me what is happening)? Is there something wrong with the Evernote servers (the status is fine on the website, but Evernote doesn't tell us this in the app, and does it matter that I am doing this from Singapore)? Please consider helping us to help you :) Without information, all I can do is complain that it isn't working. The bug report isn't even going (I can post this, but cannot connect to Evernote's servers), so I think I'll give up on that. Sorry. No time to waste if things aren't going to work. Maybe next time.

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19) Data Loss

  • A while back, I reported some data loss. I uploaded a PDF, and then it disappeared. The same thing just happened to me with a note full of text and images. What this suggests to me is that the app is overwriting the new data with old data. This has happened in the past where old versions of notes would overwrite new ones (ask in QA -- they can probably find my many tickets). But, this time it seems to happen before the files get sent to Evernote. The data is actually gone on my original device a few seconds after I created a long note. I'm a little grumpy about that, but I guess I have re-discovered a bug, and maye it will help out other folks. At the moment, it's kind of important that I have this data reliably in my device and accessible at the proper time -- I got on a plane and made an international trip in the hope of having the meeting where I am going to use it -- so I am going to turn to a competitor for this one. That's not good :( But, I know you can do better! Please do work on this. It's really important to me that I can rely on the app to perform as expected. As much as I love the app, there isn't much point in using it if it doesn't work...
  • Addendum: I forgot to mention what was (to me) one of the interesting occurrences here -- it wasn't just the entire note content that disappeared, but the title reverted back to the eariler version. That's why I thought about what had happened to me in the past (I think it was the summer of 2012). Nothing else besides my iPad is syncing now, so it is happening on the iPad or between the iPad and the servers. A pretty nasty bug. I'm still trying to reconstruct it, and I'm realizing now that some of it is just gone for good...

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I too am very disappointed by the lack of mobile spell check. That seems almost like a dealbreaker to me. I'm very close to cancelling my account. It is just unfathomable to me that for years this has not been a function. 

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What platform?  IOS seems to drive the process on the iDevice, not EN.

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9 hours ago, dwhit said:

I too am very disappointed by the lack of mobile spell check. That seems almost like a dealbreaker to me. I'm very close to cancelling my account. It is just unfathomable to me that for years this has not been a function. 

What are some mobile apps you use that do have spell check (of their own, not just what's built into a keyboard app)? I'd be interested.

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