Is This the Best Notetaking App You’ve Never Heard Of?


It’s time to turn the spotlight on UpNote.

Today, there is no shortage of great notetaking apps. Everyone has their preferences, but if you’re anything like me, you always keep half an eye open for the next big thing. The grass is always greener on the other side, or at least it looks that way from my side of the fence.

Recently, I tried a new (to me) notetaking app that had just enough to make me think twice about my current favorite, Workflowy. Did it do enough to convince me to switch? Let’s find out.

Introducing Upnote

UpNote is a really interesting notetaking app. It’s been around in some form or another since 2018, and today it stands tall among a crowded field of text-based productivity tools.

Upnote has native apps for Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android, and the experience you get on each app is remarkably similar. When you sign up for a free account, your notes will sync seamlessly between every app that you are signed into. There are no limits on the number of devices you use. Are you listening Evernote?

Upnote undoubtedly has a familiar feel. If you’ve used modern notetaking apps like Bear or Craft, you will be right at home with its clean, uncluttered interface. In fact, this is one of the first things I came to appreciate about UpNote. It’s easy to navigate and looks great every time you open it.

UpNote has a clean, modern aesthetic that is easy on the eye

Noteworthy Features

In UpNote, your notes are organized into Notebooks, but a note can also be placed in multiple notebooks. The notebooks themselves can be nested inside of other notebooks. This flexibility makes it easy to organize your notes in a way it easy to find what you are looking for.

The note editor has a slew of rich-text formatting options, and for those that want it, Markdown support is included. You can add images, links, and attachments. A variety of highlighter and text colors are also available.

In UpNote, you can indent quote blocks or even add code blocks. You can also create collapsible text blocks that expand and contract at the click of a mouse. There’s even a Focus Mode where the toolbars and notebooks are hidden from view for a distraction-free writing experience.

View-only sharing links are an option for any note in your collection, and if you are a fan of linking notes together, you will love the internal links you can create between any of your notes.

The Free vs. Paid Plan

UpNote’s basic plan lets you create up to 50 notes for free. You also get access to all the core features in the notes editor.

When you upgrade to the Premium account, there are no restrictions on the number of notes you can create. You can also add attachments, create tables, and protect your notes with a password.

There are also more themes and customization options in the UpNote Premium plan and more import and export options, should you need them.

How much does the Premium plan cost? It’s less than you think. A lifetime license to UpNote premium is just $24.99. It’s not $24.99 a month or $24.99 a year; it’s a single payment of $24.99 to unlock everything…forever.

As a value proposition, that’s tough to beat.

Room for Improvement

As much as I enjoyed using UpNote, there were still a few things that held it back in my eyes from being one of the best notetaking apps out there. The first was the web clipper. It lacks any real options. When you click it to add a webpage to UpNote, it copies the URL and all the text from the article and dumps it into an uncategorized note.

If you compare this with something like the OneNote Web Clipper, you immediately notice the difference. The OneNote browser extension lets you choose where you want to save the note, as well as the option to clip the full page, an article view, a selection, or just the URL.

And if we stick with that idea of the web, I am a little confused as to why UpNote doesn’t have a web app. The desktop and mobile apps are really good, but a web app is convenient for accessing notes on devices that are not your own or simply to keep you in the flow when you are researching topics in a web browser.

When you constantly have to switch back and forth between the app and the browser you are working in, it gets a little tedious. This is particularly noticeable when you realize the browser extension doesn’t work in the background. When you clip something from the web, it forces you to open the UpNote app, so you switch apps whether you want to or not.

Overall Impressions

There is a lot to like about UpNote. It looks like a notetaking app that people would use in 2022, and that says more than you think. The sync is fast, and the editor is feature-packed and easy to use. It’s also great value for money.

UpNote is a great alternative to apps like Evernote, Bear, or SimpleNote. It doesn’t quite check enough boxes for me, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it did for you. It’s a solid platform that gets regular updates, and you can’t ask for much more than that.

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