If you’ve read my columns or reviews before you know I’m very interested in note-taking on the iPad. So far there have been some good and some bad writing apps released by a variety of different developers…..so where does Note Taker HD fit in?
“Note Taker HD” ($4.99) is a handwriting, sketching, diagram creating, made for serious note-takers application. This is not a beginners app for sure. To start it’s got buttons and sections all over the place and when you first open it you are already overwhelmed and asking yourself..”what do I do?”. To begin with, you watch the video that is suggested on the opening window. No, seriously, watch it…otherwise you’ll be spending way too much time trying to figure out what it is these buttons do and why you should care. That said, you SHOULD care. Because if you are really serious about taking notes on the iPad, and I mean something more than to-do lists and little pie charts, then “Note Taker HD” is worth your time!
First off this app really gets that people will be using FINGERS to write on the screen. “Note Taker HD” allows users to shrink their large writing (ya know due to using a finger) down so that it will fit onto a page…using either a ‘zoom box’ or directly using the pinch gestures while editing. In one of the edit views “Note Taker HD” splits the screen in two halves. On the bottom half users are presented a zoomed-in view of a specific section of the page that they are writing in. Users write on the zoomed-in section of the page and see the results on the normal sized version of the page on the top half of the screen. It really is a nice feature and lets users take notes much more precisely. “Note Taker HD” also has a great feature that can anticipate when you are ending a line and will need more room to write, as well has moving to the line below if needed. It’s pretty incredible actually. If you don’t like the feature it can be turned off as well. Actually, that’s one of my favorite things about “Note Taker HD”; it gives users the ability to really tweak the settings and find a group that works best for them. If you love being able to tinker with preferences and make it your own, with this app you can.
Another of my favorite features is the inclusion of tags and favorites. Each note created can be given tags to help locate it later. Assuming your list of notes grows and grows, this will be a welcomed addition for anyone who needs to find a note from a previous session and doesn’t want to hunt through multiple pages. Users can also label some as a “favorite” to help recall specific notes quickly.
Want more? How about the ability to use one of sixteen pen colors, that’s 15 more than many of your handwriting apps out there. Note Taker HD also gives users the ability to output via VGA and use the app as a demonstration tool. Impressive!
So should you give it a try? Well, if you are a real hardcore note-taker, then yes. If you found Penultimate a little bare-bones, then yes. If you like to try many different apps before settling on the one that’s just right for you, then yes. Overall “Note Taker HD” is a solid app for the iPad. It has its drawbacks, it’s not the most eye-candy of apps yet (graphics updates are coming I’ve read), and can come off a little overwhelming at times, but in the end it really gives users the tools needed to create the notes they desire on the iPad. Which, if you hadn’t guessed by the name, Note Taker HD, that is the whole point.
Visit the Note Taker HD Website
Watch the Note Taker HD Demo Video
“Jonathan” aka “ReDMoSqUi” aka “Jon” aka “Jack” aka “Red” is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, and a Business Computer Technology teacher in North Carolina. Jon has worked on various websites since becoming interested in webdesign in the mid 90’s, including sites for bands such as Incubus and Dredg. “Red” is married with two children and has a weird obsession with technology, music, and Pittsburgh Penguins hockey! Contact me via email: jon (AT) theipadfan.com or visit the link below to Buzz with me on Google.