Why I Still Use (and Love) Evernote

Evernote had a rough 2016, primarily due to a price change and an announced (and then retracted) change to their privacy policy. Each raised concerns from users and spurred several articles on how to switch from Evernote to similar apps.

Despite these conflicts, Evernote is still my note taking software of choice. I’ve tried using Apple Notes and Simplenote, and they are worthy apps. But one feature has ingrained Evernote in my daily activities online: web clipping. One can argue that web clipping is not a core feature for note taking, but it is supported by both Apple Notes and Evernote. It’s so deeply entrenched in my workflow that I can’t imagine working without it.

Pictures speak louder than words so take a look at the screen captures below.

Evernote captures web content in the note and the results are editable.
Apple Notes snippets are clean, but capture very little from the page and are not configurable.

Evernote’s advanced web clipper ensures that I save exactly what I want, to the folder I choose, with the URL for the source. Apple Notes allows folder choice and note choice, but the app only saves the URL, a title, a snippet of text, and a hero image. I’ve built my workflow around capturing information from the web, saving it to Evernote and accessing it even when offline. Apple Notes gives you the snippet but requires a connection to access the full page. In addition, Evernote has extensions for both Safari and Chrome (Apple Notes does not,) and I use both browsers daily.

Users of note taking apps tend to make personal investments in them. Time spent in an app increases familiarity, and most humans tend to like the familiar. The effect is boosted when users are capturing and saving their lives and livelihood in these apps. I’ve invested my time in Evernote and it has never let me down. It’s been there from laptop to tablet to phone since I started using it in 2008. I’ll still take the time to try new apps (Bear is next on my list,) but until I find one with a better web clipping experience that improves my workflow, I’m sticking with Evernote.


Note: I also use Pocket for web clipping, but it has a different purpose. I designate the content I save to Pocket as ‘read it later,’ and it’s typically items that interest me personally. Evernote is my professional, note taking, web clipping app of choice.