There’s no shortage of note taking apps in the App Store, but Notesy stands apart from all the others with its simplicity and elegance. Notesy is an uncomplicated plaintext editor with Dropbox syncing, and it is an excellent replacement for Apple’s default Notes application.
Notesy doesn’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but after using it all day on various platforms, I found that I didn’t need them. Its beauty is certainly in its clean design and flawless integration with Dropbox.
Using the app is as easy as entering your Dropbox account info and tapping on the plus sign where you choose a file name and start writing. Your notes will be immediately available in your Dropbox account. In addition to the writing area, there are some useful and well thought out buttons on the bottom of the screen.
- The mail icon allows you to email your notes, rename them, duplicate them, change the font between fixed width/variable width, and print your notes.
- The info icon displays word count, paragraph count, lines, characters, and creation date.
- The trash can icon allows you to delete your note.
- The keyboard icon, when tapped, takes you to the end of your notes so that you don’t need to scroll through a long note.
- The arrow icon allows you to enter fullscreen mode, where you see only the text and the keyboard, minus the bars on the top and bottom.
Notesy may not look great when you first start it up, but there are options to choose a different paper color, font, and ink color. One of the great things about Notesy is the option to use both variable and fixed width fonts on a note by note basis. You can assign both to each note, meaning that you can very quickly change font and font size if necessary. This isn’t a feature that everyone will use, but it may be useful to some people. I found the fixed width fonts to be great for lists, while the variable width fonts worked well for everything else.
The quick and error-free Dropbox syncing was the best feature of Notesy. I installed Notesy on my iPad and my iPhone, and tested syncing between them, as well as with my two laptop computers. There’s a green check box on the right side of each note so there is no confusion about what has been synced and what hasn’t. Notesy recognizes all characters, including Chinese symbols, but it can only use UTF-8 format. This does take a tiny bit of extra work when creating a new note on your computer to use in Notesy, as UTF-8 is not a default file format in TextEdit and Notepad. However, this may be different depending on the text editor that you use.
This newest version of Notesy includes a feature that saves and syncs your work every two minutes, so that no data is ever lost. Additionally, Dropbox allows you to recover deleted and previous versions of your notes for 30 days. You are able to save your notes in any folder within Dropbox, which is a nice bonus feature that not all note taking apps offer.
Notesy does not save formatting when you sync it to your computer, and it would not be suitable for complex notes that need a lot of organization, such as those with bullets, indents, bolding, italics, and variable colors. However, it is perfect for informal every day notes and lists.
What I liked: Notesy does exactly what it says it does, with a nice simple design that is free from distractions and easy to use for note taking. It is the best note taking app that I’ve used, and I’ve been through a lot of them, such as Simplenote and Evernote. In fact, I was impressed enough with Notesy to use it to type this entire review.
What I didn’t like: There are missing functions that could be useful, such as the ability to view and save files in different formats, which would allow for more advanced stylization. That could be detrimental though, as it would take away from the simple design of the app
To buy or not to buy: If you don’t use Dropbox, this app is nearly worthless, but if you’re not using Dropbox, you should start. It’s free and has become more and more useful as different apps offer Dropbox integration. If you need more advanced file features, such as saving in different formats, then you should look elsewhere. But if you just want to take notes that you can easily access on all devices and computers, this app is absolutely worth it.
- App Name: Notesy for Dropbox
- Version Reviewed: 1.6.2
- Category: Productivity
- Developer: David Findlay
- Price: $2.99