OneNote Goes Freemium for Windows and Mac, Office Lens Debuts
March 17, 2014 3:35 PM
comment(s) - last by
Microsoft is also opening the floodgates to third parties to use OneNote via APIs
Microsoft Corp.'s (
) Notepad and Wordpad have long felt a little long in the tooth, lacking dedicate support for features like autosaving and cloud backup. One option, of course, was to turn to third-party apps, but Microsoft had its own beefed up notes app; OneNote. The only problem was that you generally
needed an Office suite license or an Office 365 subscription
to access OneNote.
I. OneNote Goes Freemium
That's about to change. Microsoft
announced this week
that it will be offering a slightly downgraded version of OneNote for both Windows and Mac users, via the platforms' respective app stores. The new app will reportedly lack a handful of power user/enterprise features, such as Sharepoint support and Outlook integration.
Clearly Microsoft was feeling the heat from sleek competitors like Evernote.
Here's how the new free Mac version looks...
And as a refresher, here's how the Windows version (now free) looks...
It should be interesting to watch whether the rest of Office gets shifted to such a Freemium model, one which Stephen Elop
when he was
campaigning to become CEO of Microsoft
Servers boss Satya Nadella
instead received the nod).
In related news, Microsoft also announced it would be releasing an API for third-party apps to integrate OneNote.
Japanese printing and scanning giants Brother Industries, Ltd. (
) and Seiko Epson Corp. (
) are among the early adopters to put forth OneNote enabled apps. News clipping apps such as
also added support, as did
, an app that looks to turn your mobile devices into portable scanners. A full list of Microsoft-featured OneNote API-enabled apps can be
II. Office Lens, Office Clipper Make a Splash
Microsoft also announced a slick new Windows Phone app called "
" which interfaces your Windows Phone with your global OneNote account. It allows you to snap photos, which you can enhance using cloud processing. It also offers optical character recognition technology that allows your phone to literally "see" text via its camera, which can then be inserted into OneNote entries.
Here's a view of the app in action...
...and a demo video from Microsoft:
Microsoft also offered a handy tool called
that makes it easier to copy and paste entire webpages (particularly news articles) into a OneNote entry.
Google Inc.'s (
) Android and Apple Inc.'s (
) iOS include
third-party OCR support from various app makers
, but this looks like one of the most tightly integrated and efficient OCR apps available on the market -- definitely a boost for Windows Phone.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
3/18/2014 5:56:01 AM
I've been waiting for a Mac version of OneNote for ages. I've even gone so far as to install Parallels just to get OneNote into my iMac and Macbook Air, and it was quite a clunky solution.
I don't know how much this has to do with Satya Nadella taking the reigns over at Microsoft, but he certainly saved himself a customer. I've been flirting with Evernote for the past month, but now I know I can keep going steady with my highschool sweetheart.
Now only if they'd iron out the sync issues I keep running into using with Skydrive (or whatever they're calling it now) and offer a iPad app that has the same functionality as the desktop version, then I'd be a happy camper.
3/18/2014 7:26:08 AM
OMG, the sync issues with One Drive/Skydrive on OSX are so annoying, I thought it was just me. They need to sort this out, as it really puts you off using it as a Cloud system, and there are lots of decent alternatives. Their Office strategy for iOS is a joke though, so I'm not surprised there is no continuity.
You have the iPhone Office app for editing which only works in portrait mode (!) and lacks copy/paste and other modern features and which works only with a Office 365 subscription, then you also have Onedrive and OneDrive Pro plus all the other OneNote esque apps. However you have no Office app on the iPad whatsoever, so everybody at my old company had to buy alternative office apps or just use the Apple ones. Talk about missing out on sales...millions of people would subscribe overnight to O365 if they just offered a decent office suite for the iPad.
They should give up on Surface, it's a dead duck in terms of mass adoption, nobody's going to buy it just to use Office anymore, those halcyon days for Microsoft existed before the iPad launched. Perhaps MS is starting to see sense however.
3/21/2014 3:57:31 PM
Surface? Possibly, if the next one can have an AMD or Intel Bay Trail like solution - thus still keeping the RT side of software (since RT apps work just as well in x86 Windows 8) and the added benefit of previous desktop applications in places like Windows 7. It isn't a hard process to migrate over from since if you have an RT solution, getting a full Windows 8 solution would mean you gain a software working space.
Surface Pro and Pro 2? You are crazy to think such a product like this should go away in my opinion (unless you do not have one and saying it out of spite).
Both the Surface and Surface Pro adopted a new device paradigm in their cover systems that keeps the components in the screen - while boldly eliminating components in the keyboard. I have not seen any other PC OEM do this (most of them use detach tablet with a dock that cannot fold back completely, mechanical hinges to keep the light keyboard and port dock solid, the hinge mechanism not allowing full fold back of the tablet section (which is understandable) or keep the laptop model but have a 360 degree hinge).
Not to mention, tablet PCs (before the Samsung ATIV and Surface Pro up to this point) settled on a swivel hinge design, and maintained the usual laptop chassis for the keyboard and components.
It isn't noticeable since you can get after market bluetooth keyboards and folios... but would be as thick as the cover system in the Surface Pros with a wireless connectivity concern. A pure tablet in one of those things (in computing and software loadouts) can't compare.
Lets not forget that little thing called the pen that pretty much is what some Tablet PC prospects want in drawing, notes, diagramming, painting, and such. Because buying that separate Cintiq display (or a USB digitizer that has a disconnect from the screen to pen - to a laptop) is still a spaghetti solution.
Even if you do have a capacitive stylus, it is still registering a point and tablet capacitive displays aren't pressure sensitive. Meaning strokes aren't as "pen" like.
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