Going Native- Back to the Notes App Revisited

I got a few comments on my original article from Flipboard and Twitter that touched on details I thought were interesting and worth bringing back to the site. Before diving in, thank you to all reached out, and I hope to hear from you again. 


First off, the consensus among users I interacted with was that OneNote has a really strong feature set, especially considering that it’s free to use on iOS. However, the responses were mixed on sync performance. Most reported that it worked great for them, but a few others had similar experiences to me. Any app, especially one as flexible and widely used as OneNote can work great for most users, while the bugs and pitfalls hit the rest of us. Considering the widely positive reviews of the app, my experience is more likely an outlier. However, after problems strike a couple of times, the old saying applies- “Once bitten, twice shy.” However it is good to bear in mind that BOTH can simultaneously be true. 

Second, I had several commenters mention the relatively new note taking app Bear. I have to admit that one slipped by me on its way to the App Store. 


However, it has garnered a fair amount of acclaim since its release early last November, including an App Store Editor’s Note from Apple on its App Store page. After reading the comments and a few reviews, I am going to give it a go myself. I’m not thrilled about paying for the ability to sync, but at only $1.45 monthly, I’m not going to complain too much. Evernote Premium was more expensive and I paid for it for over a year. I will post my own review of how Bear stacks up against iOS Notes and Notability in the near future. 

One of the last comments I got came to my Twitter account (jhrogersii), and was the most interesting of all of them. The commenter also mentioned the Bear app, and that he had switched due to recent sync issues with iOS Notes. I have never been affected by any sync issues with Notes, and frankly hadn’t heard anything about this, so I was intrigued. When I asked him what he was referring to, the gentleman sent me a link to a forum thread at macrumors that detailed iCloud sync issues that evidently plagued a LOT of people for a long period of time. It was pretty eye-opening. 

It looks like these problems have been cleared up for most users in recent iOS updates, but such an issue calls into question one of my primary points about going back to iOS Notes. I made a big deal about how dependable it was. My exact quote was, “It NEVER fails.” Well, I guess that’s not entirely true. At least not for all iOS users. 

If you are a user of Bear and have some good tips as I get started with it, or if you were also affected by Apple’s recent Notes sync issues, I would love to hear from you. Feel free to give me a shout in the comments section below, on our Flipboard page, or on Twitter @iPadInsightBlog or @jhrogersii

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Going Native- Back to the Notes App

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At one time, I had pretty much forsaken the iOS Notes app. Other than taking down to-go orders and a few other random thoughts on the iPhone version, I had pretty much stopped using it a few years ago. I hardly ever used it on any of my iPads. I had Evernote and kept almost all notes that I took there, whether for personal or work use. I even had their paid Premium service for over a year so I could upload more content for work notes. Since it was completely platform-agnostic and easy to get data into and out of, I just assumed at the time that I would stick with them long term.

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Review: iFrogz Impulse Wireless Bluetooth Headphones

Impulse

In my opinion, one of the best features of any mobile accessory is versatility. I spend a lot of time on the go during the day, and do a fair amount of travelling for work, so earning a place in my gear bag is a badge of honor, and it usually requires a certain measure of versatility. The more bases a device or accessory can cover, the better the chance that it holds a spot there.

In the past, versatility was a given with headphones and earbuds. You plugged them into a jack and they just worked. With Bluetooth headphones, there came more freedom of movement, but with the conditions of only being compatible with certain devices and limited battery life. Now, iOS users are faced with even more complications with the removal of the iPhone’s headphone jack going forward, with several other smartphone manufacturers now making the same move right behind them. If you own both an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus and an iPad, complications with earbuds or headphones will ensue.

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Deals: Zendure 40W Max A-Series 4-Port USB Travel Wall Charger at 17% off

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Today’s featured deal is perfect for anyone who travels abroad and needs to ensure that they can still charge all their devices no matter what country they are visiting.  Equipped with both UK and EU adapters, you will have the convenience of charging all your electronic devices no matter what your travel pends are.  For a limited time you can pick up your Zendure 40W Max A-Series 4-Port USB Travel Wall Charger at a discounted price of 17% off.  It’s a great deal that will run you only $32.95 – instead of its standard price of $39.95.  Here’s some info about the Zendure and how you can take advantage of this deal while it lasts…

Engineered for the world traveler, this wall charger is equipped with UK and EU adapters to plug into just about any wall outlet in the world. With one QC high-speed, and three 5V/2.4A ZEN+ USB ports, this adapter can charge your smartphone, e-reader, tablet, smart watch, camera, or any other 5V USB chargeable device in a jiffy. You’re going to want your devices charged up and healthy while you’re traveling, so travel smart with Zendure.

  • Lightweight & easy to travel w/ & compatible w/ power outlets throughout the world
  • Charges up to four USB-compatible devices at once
  • Delivers Quick Charge 2.0 for all Quick Charge compatible devices
  • Equipped w/ a multi-faceted protection system to reduce the risk of over-powering, overheating, & short-circuiting

To see more details, and to place an order, visit this iPad Insight Deals page.

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Location Services on your iPad; what you need to know

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When it comes to electronic devices, especially mobile phones, the big big buzz word these day is privacy.  Makes sense, it’s a big deal.  Almost as important as privacy is how you mange your privacy settings.  Personalizing settings to fit your lifestyle and needs can be cumbersome and consuming.  If users are confused or overwhelmed they are much less likely to reap the benefits of being able to keep their information safe and private.  When privacy is sacrificed at the hands of convenience bad things can happen to good people.

One of  the more configureable settings on your iPad that can impact your privacy is Location Services.  Location based services are a hot topic because they can be very helpful in predicting our needs and preparing us for upcoming events.  However they can also become intrusive if given too much access–it just depends on what your expectations are and how informed you are from the beginning.  To make it easier, let’s walk through his to configure Location Services your iPad.

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How to watch Super Bowl 51 on your iPad

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The most watched sporting event of the year and popular American Tradition–the Super Bowl is back again tomorrow as the Atlanta Falcons get set to take on the New England Patriots.  This is the 51st version of the contest which brings the official branding back to being represented by roman numerals.   The use of LI looks pretty awkward, and is not immediately recognizable by many, but tradition is tradition, no matter how out of place it may seem at times.  If you’re not spending the evening at a sports bar or at a friends house and you’re actively looking for an alternative way to watch the Super Bowl, we’re here to help.  This year the Super Bowl will be aired on FOX.  In addition to the main event FOX will also air all the pre-game build-up and analysis starting at 1:50 pm EST.

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Deals: Plugies Magnetic Charging Cables at 30% off

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Today’s featured deal is perfect for anyone looking for a quick and easy charging solution for their mobile devices.  Designed for either Lightning or Micro-USB connections, you no longer need to fumble in the dark when you need to plug in your phone or tablet.  With a simple magnetic connection it’s never been easier to start charging your devices.  For a limited time you can pick up your Plugie Magnetic Charging Cable at a discounted price of 30% off!  It’s a great deal that will run you only $27.99 – instead of its standard price of $40.00.  Here’s some info about the Plugie and how you can take advantage of this deal while it lasts…

You know the snap-and-charge design on MacBooks that you love (well, loved anyway) so much? Imagine having that convenience with your phone charger, too. Well, you can! Plugies are impressive little adapters that live in your phone’s charging port so you can snap the magnetic cable in whenever you want, no fuss. Don’t tug your phone off the table by accident again, help yourself out with an easily detachable Plugie.

  • Charge your phone in a simple snap
  • Adapt a standard cable into a magnetic cord w/ the included adapter
  • Enjoy your cable for longer thanks to its braided nylon & anodized aluminum casing
  • Eliminate standard cords from your life – Plugies live in your phone
  • Organize your cable w/ the silicone strap

To see more details, and to place an order, visit this iPad Insight Deals page.

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Review: 360 Gripstand by Lynktec


Like so many smartphone and tablet accessory categories, stands have become exceedingly commoditized. If you don’t know what I mean, I dare you to search for “iPad Stand” on eBay or Amazon and see how long you can stand browsing the never ending list. Half of what you will find there probably comes out of no more than 5 factories in East Asia.

For all the difficulty in finding a good device stand that is versatile and stands out from the crowd, it’s an accessory we all find ourselves in need of at one time or another. I’ve had several over the years, but they all had flaws. They didn’t last. They would only work for certain devices, or in certain use conditions. Frankly, I had never owned one that I was really all that happy with. That changed when I got Lynktec’s 360 Gripstand.

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What’s Coming Up at the Next iPad Event?

IPad Pros

As we close the book on January, the rumors of a March Apple event centered on the iPad are coming fast and furious now. There are multiple reports of a new iPad Pro in a different size, an Apple Pencil refresh, and potentially some other Apple device updates, as well. With the iPad line progressively trending away from the Air and Mini and toward the Pro line over the last year, this next event should give us some clarification as Apple’s intentions for the tablet category going forward. This will be especially interesting given the continuing declines in year over year sales and profits for the iPad line that we recently learned about during Apple’s quarterly sales call.

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Quick Look: Zenkit, an alternative Product Management tool to Trello

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The idea of productivity can best be described as a tug of war for me.  What I mean by that is that I strive to be a productive person, but often get caught up in finding the most productive way to be productive–which in turn, isn’t very productive at all.  I’m an early adopter by nature, and love to try new apps, among other things.  So when I read about Zenkit, and the similarities it had with Trello, I immediately became curious.

Self described as a product management tool that grows with you, Zenkit is beautifully designed and easy to use.  So this begs the question–why switch from Trello if it has been working perfectly fine for you?  Just like with any other platform that experiences  great success, and is then purchased and made part of a larger collective–there is real concern that Trello will have one of two eventual outcomes.  Either the application will fall off the radar by its new owners and be left to gather dust–or it will evolve or morph into something very different than what it was originally designed to be.

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Deals: Private Internet Access VPN 2-Yr Subscription at 63% off

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Today’s featured deal is perfect for anyone looking to use their  internet connection in complete anonymity, especially when using public Wi-Fi and all the pitfalls associated with security issues and digital advertising.  With a dedicated VPN, you can have the safety you desire and protect up to 5 connected devices at the same time without any restrictions.  For a limited time you can gain access to a Private Internet Access VPN 2-Yr Subscription at an incredible discounted price of 63% off!  It’s a great deal that will run you only $59.95 – instead of its standard price of $166.00.  Here’s some info about Private Internet Access VPN and how you can take advantage of this deal while it lasts…

Block hackers and government spies, even when you’re connected to public Wi-Fi, thanks to Private Internet Access. High-level encryption ensures you’ll put an end to incessant digital advertising, while IP cloaking gives you access to the Internet uncensored from anywhere. With Private Internet Access, the only gateways to the outside Internet are the ones you open.

  • Prevents data mining so you can browse anonymously
  • Blocks ads, trackers & malware w/ the new MACE feature
  • Connects instantly w/ one-click installers
  • Masks your location w/ IP cloaking
  • Allows the use of 5 devices simultaneously w/ unlimited bandwidth
  • Protects your identity w/ several layers of privacy
  • Bypasses censorship filters so you are free from geographic restrictions
  • Stops traffic w/ a kill switch if the VPN connection is unexpectedly terminated

To see more details, and to place an order, visit this iPad Insight Deals page.

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