Evernote has been an indispensable application for me for a long time, first on my PCs and more latterly on my mobile devices – phone and tablet. Back in 2009 I blogged about my serious attachment to the program. I found Evernote a much improved version of the InfoSelect note-taking program I’d previously been wedded to.
I’ve continued to find the Evernote useful. For instance, yesterday I was in a library doing research for a book I’m writing. I took all my notes in Evernote, using a Bluetooth keyboard linked to my Android tablet. It was comforting to know that those notes were automatically making their way to my phone, laptop and the cloud. It was also very convenient, because I can start working on them immediately on my laptop.
But Evernote has become slow and unwieldy – infected by the same swissarmyknife feature-creep that ruined InfoSelect. And it’s no longer the only game in town. Other apps such as Google Keep and Microsoft OneNote can do the job – to lesser (and greater) degrees.
Evernote has been in financial difficulty for a while. This no doubt was behind its announcement this week that the free version will now only work on two devices, and the premium version subscription will go up from US45 a year to $70.
I’ve been a premium subscriber for many years because it has a few nifty extras that are worthwhile for me. But are those extras worth the price rise? Mmmm…
I’ve been using Google Keep as a simple note taker for some time. It’s simple and it does a simple job well. But I also need note program with more features and I don’t want to lose the really valuable personal database I’ve built up in Evernote.
Now I don’t have to lose it. There’s now a Windows utility, Evernote2OneNote, that lets you migrate an Evernote database to OneNote. And OneNote is entirely free to use on as many devices you like. See http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/migrate-evernote-onenote/
I’ve played around with OneNote and read reviews and comparisons with Evernote. I doubt it’s as good as Evernote for my purposes, but saving US$70 a year in perpetuity puts a different complexion on things.
I renewed my Evernote subscription quite recently, but I’ll do a trial migration to OneNote sooner rather than later, in case the process needs to get at Evernote’s cloud database, or in case Evernote manages to put a spanner in the migration works.
The cloud database might disappear if Evernote goes bust – and going bust would be no surprise. When you’re in financial strife, it’s hard to fix things by raising prices and increasing restrictions, when your competitors are free.