This seems to be the circle of life for productivity apps. At first, someone creates a simple and beautiful iPhone or Mac app, which is lauded for its ease of use. Then as more and more features creep into the app (making it great for power users, but alienating to new users), someone else comes around builds a simpler version of the core product. Wasn’t Evernote once that simple and beautiful note-taker in town? Now Helsinki-based All Notes has launched today to gun for that easy-to-use spot.
Today the company has just launched a Mac and iPhone app designed to target those light note-taking users, such as people that would use Apple’s own notes app or a plain old note pad.
The app allows users to do all the functions of a simple Evernote, such as adding to a specific notebook, tagging your notes, attaching files, and “starring” them for easy access later. Notes and their photos get added to a grid, allowing you to dig through photos you’ve added to the notebook. Their goal is to provide that right level of simplicity and personalization, and to collect metadata around notes to put context together. We got our hands on a copy and it does what it says on the box- it’s easy to use looks good too.
In the future they’ll be releasing an iPad app and a few more features into the app, like Audio notes, and integrations into calendar events to provide more context around notes.
If you see me referencing Evernote too much in this post, it’s because I’ve been a pretty heavy Evernote user for ArcticStartup’s articles and all the notes behind them. Despite that I can see the appeal of this app. Evernote has tons of buttons and features I never use, and AllNotes cuts down to the core of note taking needs. Even though I’ve been telling my parents to hop on the Evernote train, they’ve really never gotten past the first hurdle (even though they use the basic Apple Notes). All Notes might be something simpler for jotting down notes on the go, or to be a place to save and recall picture-heavy recipes.
The iOS app retails for $2.99 while the Mac app clocks in at $4.99, so they’ll have to do some convincing to users to get the download. That being said, maybe enough people are unsatisfied with what’s out there to warrant the friction.