With school starting, it’s time to write a few blogs about apps and products that work well for students. Last week I pitched the idea of using Rocketbook to bring your handwritten notes into a digital form. While there are many options on where to store digital notes, Evernote is one of the best products out there. Just like with Rocketbook, we are not sponsored by Evernote in any way.
As our resident “tech guy,” I have written about Evernote a few times in the past so I will keep the “what is it” part to a minimum. A little background, I was surprised when I logged into my account and saw that it was created in 2007. Evernote has changed in many ways over the last 15 years, but it has kept true to what it was designed to do, help you create and organize digital notes. I encourage you to try it out and find your preferred way to organize your information. If you want tips from my experience just reach out on our social media pages and I would be happy to respond.
Here are the 5️⃣ things I love about Evernote:
One thing that has always set Evernote apart from other note apps is the power of the web. Other apps have a web version but I have not found one that allows you to do nearly as much as you can on evernote.com.
Years ago Evernote introduced a browser plugin that let you clip websites and store them in a note. It was an instant lifesaver for me, letting me document the entire text of articles I used in research papers. There is also a plugin that will give you citations for those websites to easily paste into the note with the article. This plugin is a must-have for every student using Evernote.
It’s common to need to move from your computer to tablet to phone. Even going from one computer to another can be an issue with some notetaking apps. Your school might issue a ChromeOS device but you have a WindowsOS computer at home and an iPad for other use. With Evernote you will never need to worry about losing something in transition.
I talked about Rocketbook giving you a way to take handwritten notes and make them digital, and that Evernote is a great place to store those notes. Evernote can even recognize and convert handwriting to plain text. That’s not the only connection you can make, Evernote can export to other apps like Quizlet and import from apps like Scannable. If the connection isn’t native you can use something like IFTTT and Zapier to move things from one app to Evernote or out of Evernote to that app. Giving you even more power and functionality.
You’ll hate this, but you are going to have to work with other people at some point. When you do, Evernote allows you to share notes and notebooks with others. I found this most helpful on group projects and papers where our entire group could know what research we were each working on. Evernote added notifications and tasks which can also be helpful to make sure everything is getting done.
While Evernote is a great tool there are a few things I am not so fond of.
There is still a free version of Evernote and you pretty much get everything it has to offer. However, they limit the number of devices you can be logged in to, and removing a device isn’t an easy process. It also limits the amount of data you can upload. At $7.99/month it is not a huge expense, and if you pay for a full year, it is only $70 which lowers the cost even more. Keep an eye out, sometimes you can find deals. If they decide to offer our readers a student discount, I will be sure to tweet it out.
Too much stuff
Particularly for new users, Evernote can be overwhelming. With tasks and calendar integration plus app connections and the web clipper, it can be intimidating. Start small, just focus on taking notes and organizing those notes. As you grow as a user explore the more advanced features. Try not to do too much right away.
This is the more frustrating thing for me, when something isn’t going right and getting help is more work than just living with the problem. I wish their support was a better experience, but the good thing is that in 15 years I have used their support twice. It’s not like things break very much and for the most part, my issues have turned out to be “problems in chair.”
Hopefully, this blog encourages you to download Evernote and get your notes organized and available anywhere you need them. Good luck on your journey to college.
By Jason Combs