Are you tired of feeling overwhelmed and disorganized?
Want to keep your thoughts and tasks in check but not sure where to start?
Never fear because we've got you covered! In this article, we’ll help you find the best note taking app for your needs.
Whether you’re a student, researcher, manager, or busy parent, this list of top 13 note-taking apps will make you feel like a productivity pro in no time.
Let’s dive in!
Best note taking software comparison chart (top 10 highest rated note apps)
Let’s quickly see an overview of the top 10 best-voted apps, along with their pricing plans and what they’re best for.
Free plan; paid plans start at $8/month
Free to use
Free plan; paid plans start at $1.99/month
Free plan; paid plans start at $1.49/month
Free to use
Revisions and note history
Free to use
Free to use
Free plan; paid plans start at $6/month
Free plan; paid plans start at $8.99 one-time fee
Free plan; paid plans start at $4/month
What are the best note taking apps? Here’s our top 13 list:
The best note taking apps let you write notes in different formats, share your notes and collaborate on projects in real-time, and synchronize your notes across multiple devices, among other things.
We thoroughly researched and tested the top apps on the market and came up with these 13 note-taking solutions:
1. Evernote: best note taking app overall
Evernote is a powerful note-taking app that allows you to easily capture, organize, and access all of your notes, ideas, and information. It's available on multiple platforms, including the web, Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.
What makes Evernote one of the best software for note taking is its large selection of features. For example, there's a Web Clipper functionality that lets you save articles, web pages, and screen captures directly to Evernote.
You can also capture and organize notes in a variety of formats, including text, images, audio, and video, as well as add tags, links, and attachments to your notes to make them more easily searchable and accessible.
And if you want to save time, there's a variety of templates for different types of notes, like a daily mental health journal, chore charts, a habit tracker, and more.
Evernote's advanced search feature is quite handy for finding notes quickly and easily, even if you have thousands of notes saved. You can also set reminders so you always remember an important task or deadline. There are separate plans for individuals and teams.
If you're looking for a good Evernote alternative, consider Notion. You can learn more about this popular tool in our review below, but we also suggest reading our Notion vs Evernote comparison for even more details.
Good selection of features
Available for Mac, Windows, Android, and iOS
Generous free plan
Plans for individual and team use
Low learning curve
Integration with apps like Slack, Outlook, MS Teams, Zapier, and Gmail
Expensive paid plans
Not the most lightweight app
Evernote Personal, $8/month
Evernote Professional, $10/month
Evernote Teams, $14/user/month
2. Google Keep: best note taking tool for minimalists
Google Keep is a great note-taking app for users who need simplicity and ease of use. Its simple user interface and powerful features make it perfect for anyone looking for a quick and easy way to stay organized and on top of their tasks.
You can do almost everything in Google Keep that you can with any other note taking app. You can set reminders and alarms, color-code your notes to make them more easily searchable and identifiable, and more.
The app lets you share notes and collaborate with others in real time, making it a great tool for group projects or sharing shopping lists with family members. If you need, you can integrate the app with other Google apps like Google Calendar, Google Docs, and Gmail so that you easily create to-do lists, set reminders, and access your notes from anywhere.
Simple and intuitive interface
Free to use
Works well with other Google apps
Doesn’t overwhelm you with features
Good sharing and collaboration features
No third-party integration
Lacks a desktop app
20,000 character limit
Free to use
Visit Google Keep
3. Microsoft OneNote: best note taking app for Windows
Microsoft OneNote is an excellent note taking app that offers a wide range of features, making it perfect for individuals, students, and professionals who are looking for a powerful and flexible tool to help them stay organized.
The Microsoft note taking app is the best way to take notes online because of its flexibility, allowing you to create notes in a variety of formats, including text, images, video, and audio notes. You can also add tags, links, and attachments to your notes to make them more easily searchable and accessible. You can even draw your thoughts and annotate your notes using a stylus or your finger.
OneNote is also great for team projects and group work, as it lets you collaborate and share notes with others in real-time. You'll find a variety of templates for task management, such as to-do lists, agendas, and project plans.
Another great feature of OneNote is its integration with other Microsoft Office apps such as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, allowing you to insert and edit files from those apps within OneNote easily.
You can also set reminders so you always remember an important task or deadline. If you wonder why Evernote came before OneNote in this article, you can read our Evernote vs OneNote comparison to learn more about the differences and similarities between both platforms.
Best online note taking app for Windows users
Integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft Office apps
Comes with a good deal of features
Generous free version
Works on all major platforms
Limited text formatting
Only 5GB of storage for free users
Free for up to 5GB of notes
$1.99/month for 100GB
Visit Microsoft OneNote
4. Bear: best note taking app for Mac
Bear is the best program for taking notes on Mac. It has a simple and elegant interface, which makes it ideal for users who are looking for a minimalist and easy-to-use note taking app.
It makes note taking on Macbook quick and painless. There are many good features, like hashtags to find and organize notes however you like, different export options for exporting your notes to other apps or platforms, and in-line support for images and photos.
You’ll be able to password-protect your notes, giving you an extra layer of security for your sensitive information.
Bear also offers paid plans that come with additional features such as syncing notes across devices, unlocking advanced export options, and access to additional themes and typography options.
Best note app for Mac
Easy to use and minimalistic interface
Different export options
A selection of themes and typography
Encrypt individual notes
It’s not available for Windows or Android
5. Apple Notes: top note sharing app for iPhone users
Apple Notes is a note-taking app that comes pre-installed on all Apple devices (iOS, iPad, and macOS).
One of the best features of the app is its integration with other Apple apps, such as Siri for creating notes using voice commands, and with the Photos app, which allows you to add photos to your notes easily. Additionally, you can create checklists, add attachments, and embed web links to your notes.
Another great feature of Apple Notes is its ability to organize notes into folders and subfolders and the option to add tags to your notes, making them easily searchable. You can share notes with others, which makes it a great shared notepad app for group projects and team collaboration.
There’s a variety of formatting options, including the option to add different multimedia to your notes, like images, sketches, and even handwriting to your notes. You can also add tables and create interactive checklists. The best thing is that it syncs across all your Apple devices, so you can access your notes from anywhere.
Pre-installed on Apple devices
Free to use
Syncs across all your devices
Integrates with other Apple apps
Great features like tagging, sharing, and powerful search
Not available for Windows and Android
Free for 5GB of storage
Visit Apple Notes
6. Simplenote: best online notes app for revisions and note history
We rated SimpleNote as the best online note taking app for users who are looking for a simple and easy-to-use tool to capture and organize their thoughts and ideas. With its clean interface, powerful search feature, and syncing capabilities, it's the best way to take notes online for anyone looking for a minimalist and efficient note-taking app.
With SimpleNote, you'll be able to sync your notes across all your devices in real-time and access your notes from anywhere. You can share notes with others, which makes it a great app for group projects and team collaboration.
SimpleNote offers end-to-end encryption for your notes, giving you an extra layer of security for your sensitive information. There’s a variety of export options for exporting your notes to other apps or platforms.
SimpleNote is a free note-taking app, but you can always upgrade to SimpleNote Plus for additional features such as increased storage and offline access.
Available for Mac, Windows, Android, and iOS
Generous free plan
Only supports text notes
No formatting tools or web clipper
Free to use
7. Dropbox Paper: best cross platform note taking app
Dropbox Paper is a collaborative note taking and document-editing app that's part of the Dropbox Suite of apps.
We voted it as the best cross platform notes app as it's available across all platforms and devices, including the web, iOS, and Android. In a nutshell, it's a fantastic app for teams and individuals who need a versatile tool for organizing and sharing their ideas and work.
One of the best features of Dropbox Paper is its real-time collaboration capabilities, such as allowing multiple users to work on the same document simultaneously. It also allows you to share notes with others and set permissions for those who can view and edit the notes.
You'll be able to embed files and media, such as images and videos, create and edit tables, add code blocks, and even add comments. There's a variety of templates and tools for creating documents, such as meeting notes, project plans, and task lists. It also integrates nicely with other Dropbox apps, like Dropbox Showcase.
Dropbox Paper is a free app with the option to upgrade to Dropbox Business for additional features such as increased storage, admin controls, and more advanced collaboration tools.
Works across all devices
Suitable for personal and team use
Good selection of templates
Poor note organization
Free to use
Visit Dropbox Paper
8. Fellow: best meeting notes app
Fellow is a meeting note app that empowers managers and their teams to collaborate on meeting agendas and talking points. The app organizes notes and tasks into projects and can then assign those tasks to team members, making it a great tool for team projects and group work. It also allows you to share notes with others and set permissions for those who can view and edit the notes.
You'll be able to schedule meetings and calls directly from the notes and keep track of meeting notes and action items within the app, making it easy for teams to stay on top of their tasks and projects.
There's a variety of templates and tools for creating documents, such as meeting notes, project plans, and task lists. Fellow integrates well with other apps such as Google Calendar, Slack, and Zoom.
Another neat feature is the customizable dashboard, which allows you to view your tasks, projects, and notes in one place. In addition, you'll find a selection of analytics and reporting features for tracking your progress and measuring performance.
Great for teams
Designed for taking meeting notes
Easy to use
Good integration options
Free plan is limited to 10 users
Free for up to 10 users
Business, get a custom quote
Enterprise, get a custom quote
9. Goodnotes: best note taking app for students
GoodNotes is a note taking app for iPad and iPhone that's designed for students and professionals who need a powerful and flexible tool for organizing and sharing their notes.
What makes GoodNotes one of the best apps for writing notes for students is the handwriting recognition functionality that lets users write handwritten notes and convert them to text. This is a fantastic functionality if you prefer taking notes by hand instead of typing. You can even import PDFs and other documents and annotate them with text in different fonts, handwriting, and drawings.
Another great feature of GoodNotes is its ability to organize notes into notebooks and then add tags, making it easy to search for and access specific notes. The app lets you share notes with others and set permissions for those who can view and edit the notes.
And did we mention you can record audio while taking notes? This option can come in handy for students who want to review their notes later.
Designed for students
Handwriting recognition software
Free for any educational institution using Apple School Manager
Built-in flash cards study mode
Windows app not available, but currently in beta version
Free for up to 3 notebooks
One-time fee of $8.99
10. Notion: good note writing app for team notes
Notion is a note taking and project management app designed for teams and individuals who need a versatile tool for organizing and sharing their ideas and work. The fact that this tool ranks at the top of most project management software comparisons speaks for itself and what you can expect from this tool.
In Notion, each document or note is referred to as a "page," and everything within the platform is referred to as a "block." Blocks can include basic elements such as text, headings, and checklists, as well as media types like images, videos, audio, code snippets, web bookmarks, and files.
You can use any combination of blocks on every page, and they can easily be inserted by typing "/" and scrolling through the options. Additionally, there are many built-in templates to make getting started with Notion easy without the need to customize everything.
You'll be able to create a wide variety of content types, such as notes, tasks, wikis, and databases, all in one place. There's a powerful search feature that helps you easily find and access your notes and tasks, even if you have thousands of them in storage.
In terms of third-party integrations, Notion allows you to integrate with other apps such as Google Calendar, Slack, Google Drive, and Zoom.
Great for team notes
Integrates with third-party apps
Mobile apps for Android and iOS
Web Clipper browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari
Comes with a learning curve
Personal, free to use
Personal Pro, $4/month, billed annually
Team, $8/user/month, billed annually
Enterprise, custom quote
11. Joplin: best free note taking app
Joplin is the best free notes app that's designed to be open-source. You can use it across all devices and operating systems, including Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.
One of the best features of Joplin is its encryption feature, which allows you to encrypt your notes and keep them secure. It uses the encryption standard AES-256, and the encryption is done client-side, which means that only you can access your notes.
You'll be able to organize notes into notebooks and then add tags so that you have an easier time searching through notes. There are plenty of formatting options, including the ability to add images, sketches, and even handwriting to your notes. You can also add tables and create interactive checklists.
The main Joplin app is free to use. However, you'll need to pay for the Joplin Cloud service to enable additional functionality like note syncing and sharing, customer support, and access to the app via the web.
Free to use
Web clipper extension for Chrome and Firefox
Good encryption features
Works well with all operating systems with devices
Plenty of formatting options
Limited customer support
Joplin Cloud starts at $2/month
12. Note It app: best note taking program for romantic notes
NoteIt is a note-taking app that makes it easy to share notes with your friend/partner and even have those notes show on your iPhone home screen.
The idea behind the app is simple: two people download the app, sync their accounts, and then use the app to exchange notes back and forth. Your notes can even appear on your home screen thanks to the NoteIt widget.
Sending a note is also incredibly straightforward. Simply tap the "+" icon in the upper-right corner of the screen and choose the type of note you want to create. There are various drawing tools available, such as a marker, highlighter, pencil, eraser, ruler, and lasso tool. Once you are finished, tap the "Save" button to send the note to the other user.
Great to use with your friend or partner
Free to use
A good selection of drawing tools
Lacks a multi-person function
Free to download
Visit Note It
13. SuperNotes: great research notes software
SuperNotes is a note-taking app that is designed for researchers and academics who need a powerful and flexible tool for organizing and sharing their notes.
One of the best features of SuperNotes is its ability to organize notes into notebooks and then add tags and links between notes to make it easier for you to search for and access specific notes.
Another great feature is its built-in citation manager, which allows researchers to easily organize and cite their sources, saving them time and effort. Researchers can also import and export their notes and sources in a variety of formats, such as BibTeX, RIS, and more.
You'll find a variety of formatting options, including the ability to add images, sketches, and even handwriting to your notes. You can also add tables and create interactive checklists.
SuperNotes offers a variety of export options that allow you to export your notes to other apps or platforms, such as Markdown, HTML, PDF, and more.
Mac, Windows, and Linux apps
Android and iOS apps
Fast and reliable
Best suitable for researchers
Starter plan, $0/month
Unlimited plan, $7.40/month
Which is the best notes app for me? Key takeaways
In this post, we suggested that Evernote is the best note taking app overall. It has been around for over a decade, offers a free plan, and is very easy to use.
However, it's important to note that the best app for you may be different based on your needs and preferences.
For example, students may find that GoodNotes is the best app for them, while researchers might prefer SuperNotes. Notion can be a great choice for team notes as it's very powerful, and the Fellow app is best for taking meeting notes.
It's important to think about your needs and note taking methods and try out different apps before committing to one.
Consider test-trying some of these apps before you decide on the best one for your needs as almost all of them come with a free plan.