They say the best camera is the one you always wear, and the same goes for laptops. You don’t need to have a fabulous planner if you don’t take it with you when coming up with ideas. One way to always have your notes handy is on your mobile, with take apps .
There are many laptop apps for Android, but not all are the same. They are very simple, best suited for quick and complex notes, when you need to write something in more precision or detail. Just like we did with task managers today, we are testing apps for taking notes so you can decide which one best suits your needs.
What do we ask of a notes app?
The needs of what is required in a note-taking app will vary from person to person, but in our comparison we will value the more features, the better, as well as overall ease of use. Here is a comparison table where the following are included sections to compare take apps.
- Text format . That is, the ability to add formatting to text such as bold, italics or underline. It is not essential for applying notes, although it can be useful when the notes are very long and it is difficult to highlight the most important parts.
- images . If the application allows you to add photos to notes, either photos taken beforehand, from the gallery, or directly with the mobile camera.
- Voice clips . Sometimes there is no time to write and the best you can do is record a voice clip and attach it to a note.
- Text / handwritten drawings . We will take into account whether the application has a “pencil” tool, to create doodles, texts or indications that are included in the notes.
- Check the boxes . The possibility that the note includes boxes to indicate whether an item is completed or not. Although it affects the field of task managers, creating shopping lists and other simple lists is still common in note-taking applications.
- Reminders . Writing the memo is the first step. The second is to remember what you’ve written when you need to. Some apps include reminders for a specific date and time or when you arrive at a certain location.
- The categories . Over time, notebooks begin to fill with small, unrelated chunks of text. In this section, we evaluate the possibilities of organizing the notes by categories, labels or in any other possible way.
- Colors . Also a category, but simpler: the possibility of choosing the background color of a note to organize or highlight them.
- You need a user account . Whether it is necessary to log in and / or create a user account before starting to use the application or not.
- Cloud synchronization . We will see here if the application saves your notes in the cloud so that you can retrieve them on another device, either on another Android mobile with the application installed either in the web version or for other platforms.
- Collaborative synchronization . Whether a note can be shared with other people and they can edit it as well. Despite being a bit advanced, it’s a coveted feature for making something as simple as a shopping list.
In our comparison, we selected the seven most popular candidates for taking notes on Android. We have people’s favorites, Google Keep, as well as their more direct competitors like OneNote, EverNote, and DropBox Paper and other notes apps that over time have gained public recognition on Google Play, such as ColorNote or Adler Notes.
We start with the one who is, for many, the champion to beat: Google Keep. He has been with us for many years, and although at first he just sinned, over time he added functions without haste but without pausing until he reached a point where it is difficult to find faults.
Best of all, it manages to stay light and easy to use , adding only what is strictly necessary and without scaring the user with a plethora of buttons or screens on the screens. It is not the best app for writing documents on Android, but for simple notes, which we like is without a doubt the best.
EverNote is the opposite of Google Keep. is rather an application for writing documents , which gives you more control over the style and format of the final text. Of course, there’s nothing stopping you from using it for more mundane things like the shopping list or your favorite movies.
However, it’s by making these annotations easier that the extra “power” of EverNote is not only unnecessary, but also hinders it. To be fair, not fast enough and intuitive enough for the consistent and impromptu use expected of a notes app . Rather, it is an application for writing more complete documents than just notes.
OneNote is located halfway between the previous two . Although in the past it was closer to the EverNote model, with the recent integration of Windows Sticky Notes into the app, it has dramatically improved its use as a note-taking app.
Here there can also be some confusion, because today you can create two types of notes in OneNote: as always and Quick Notes. Traditional Notes can be quite complex and include pictures and drawings, while Quick Notes only include text (formatted, yes).
Dropbox Paper is an all-in-one notes, documents, and tasks app. It has the advantage that you can assign tasks to specific people , which is useful in certain types of notes. However, other more interesting details are missing in the area of note taking, such as the ability to add voice clips or to do handwritten drawings.
Technically, you can easily use it for taking notes and you will enjoy collaborative editing with other people , but some more mundane and basic features are missing, such as the ability to choose a color for the note or to categorize them with categories or labels.
If you think past times were better, there are few classic note apps like ColorNote. It has over one hundred million downloads on Google Play and an average score of 4.6, although it is quite basic and has an interface that may well be from the Android Kit Kat era.
Their secret is that it works. Sometimes you don’t want to format your notes, edit them with other people, or add drawings, but a place to add chunks of text and that’s it. is something like Windows Notepad , but on Android.
Adler Notes is a notes application that performs most of the functions of Google Keep (except handwritten drawings). The interface, showing the notes on a classic grid , helps to keep them always close at hand and clearly visible.
Its use is quite intuitive, although from a performance standpoint it is a bit slower than the Notes app. It is full of features, although you need to polish the edges a bit. For example, when you switch from the mode with checkboxes or not, all previously written text is erased.
Zoho Notes app has more or less everything that a styling app is required. Maybe he has a few buttons left in the app, but in exchange for this visual pollution, you have a faster way to quickly create the kind of notes you want.
The notes themselves have a very similar visual style to Google Keep, but with the advantage that here if you can format text with bold, italics, and the like. Technically, it’s very complete, and the only downside you can put is that it doesn’t have collaborative editing or doesn’t work in landscape mode, which can be frustrating in some circumstances.
Application notes: what do they offer us and which one to choose?
We could tell you which of these apps we think is the best, but in the end it would be nothing more than my personal opinion based on my requirements and preferences. Not everyone needs the same app for taking notes , and that’s why we’re presenting this table comparing them, so you can choose which one is closest to what you’re looking for.
|Google keep||Evernote||A note||Dropbox paper||ColorNote||Adler’s Note||Notebook|
|Text format||No, just lists||Yes, bold, italics, underline, lists, indented, strikethrough, index, superscript, highlights and links||Yes, bold, italics, underline, strikeout, underlined and links||Titles, bold, italics, underline, strikethrough, indentation and lists||No||No||Yes, bold, italics, underline, strikethrough, underlined, aligned, indented, lists and links|
|Attach images||Yes, gallery and camera||Yes, from gallery and from camera, with automatic edge adjustment in documents||Yes, from gallery and with camera, with automatic edge adjustment for documents||Yes, from the gallery and the camera||No||Camera yes||Yes, from gallery and camera, with border adjustments in documents|
|Check the boxes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Reminders||Yes, by date and place||Yes by date||No||Yes, for specific tasks, by date||Yes by date||Yes by date||Yes by date|
|The categories||Yes, categories and labels||Yes, with different notebooks||Yes, with different notebooks||Yes with files||No||Yes||Yes, with different notebooks|
|You need a user account||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||No||No|
|Synchronization||Yes, with Google. Notes are available in the Web and Google Keep version.||With Evernote. Available on official sites and applications.||Yes, with the Microsoft account. Available on the official website and apps.||Yes, with Dropbox||Yes, with his own account||Yes, in Dropbox or Google Drive||Yes, with Zoho or Google Drive|
|Collaborative editing||Yes||Not in the free version||No||Yes||No||No||No|
|The best||Many functions for easy use, reminders by location.||Very complete text format||Define photos to “scan” documents||Tasks can be assigned to specific people, good collaborative editing||There is no room for distraction as it has few functions.||Intuitive and easy to use interface||It looks like a classic notepad, but allows you to add more formatting to the text, you can create multiple notebooks|
|Worst||Plain text||A little tricky to use if you just want to take quick notes||No reminder or collaborative editing||Lack of basic note-taking features, such as handwriting||Too simple: notes are just text||Cannot add handwritten notes||No collaborative editing|
For those looking for something simple and fast , there’s nothing like Google Keep, closely followed by Notebook, while the battle for those who need more complex notes It’s published between EverNote and OneNote, or Dropbox Paper if your notes involve frequently assigning tasks to other people. Finally, let’s not forget who they want notes and nothing else : ColorNote will always be there for them.