The Moleskine iPhone App
Before I even get started on this discussion (yes, its a discussion because I’m hoping for your input) let me just be clear that I’ve never been a fan of Moleskine or Apple products, so when I saw this new iPhone Moleskine app, I naturally saw it as the perfect storm of horribleness. As someone who owns an Android phone (specifically the HTC Thunderbolt with Evernote installed) I can’t actually download and use this app to test it out, so anything I write here is clearly biased by my strong dislike of both brands, and a complete lack of ever having using the app.
Moleskine iPhone App Topics
The basic features on the Moleskine iPhone app allow you to use either blank, ruled, or squared “paper” for your writing or sketching, and it allows you to enter images, geo-tag your notes, and share them with friends via email, Twitter, or Facebook. These all sound like pretty cool features, but as far as I can tell, the most recent and HUGE update of Evernote for Android does all of this and more, like giving you online access to your notebook, and the ability to use a PIN to protect your information. The only minor thing that Evernote doesn’t do that this app does is give you the choice of squared, lined, or blank pages. Now this is not a great comparison because the Moleskine App is for the iPhone only, while the enhanced version of Evernote is only for the Android at this point, however I assume that both of those things will probably change eventually.
Moleskine iPhone App Sharing
For me the bottom line is that although the Moleskine iPhone app might seem cool, it really doesn’t hold a candle to Evernote unless I’m totally missing something. Maybe I’m just taking an opportunity to be cranky and negative towards two brands that I’m just not a fan of, however I just don’t see the point for Moleskine here. Is there really much benefit in branding an application with your name if it is clearly inferior to other similar products out there?
Now keeping with my cranky negative mood today, I was also surprised at some of the commentary around the web regarding the Moleskine iPhone app, like this gem below from Uncrate.com, a site which I usually love. The red underlines are my own:
Moleskine iPhone App Comments on Uncrate
Really Uncrate? A matter of time before smartphones completely replace the notebook for most people? That seems like an incredibly bold prediction. Personally I can’t imagine only being able to use my thumbs and finger tips peck out nothing but sterile black Arial fonts everywhere. Sure there might be viable methods for using a stylus to “write” on your smartphone one day, but you have virtually zero support to rest your hand on even the larger 4″+ phones, so good luck with that carpal tunnel syndrome that most people will end up with. To this day, I have yet to sign my name on an electronic screen on a credit card terminal with a stylus where it didn’t look like a 4 yr old on a sugar high wrote my name, and this is what we use for legally binding financial transactions, are these futuristic digital notebooks going to be any better? You do have the technology used in the Wacom Bamboo Tablet, but that is certainly not the size of a smartphone, so you still have that issue to wrestle with.
Then there is this comment on the Moleskine iPhone app over at the iTunes site, again with the red underline being my own. This comment has to do with the actual physical version of the notebook, not like I have not seen this unabashed love for the Moleskine notebook before, but statements like this just make me wish I could hand this person something like a nice 90g Rhodia Web Notebook that would put any Moleskine to shame in my opinion.
Moleskine iPhone App Comment
Anyway, thats probably enough of me being a cranky, upity, rambling jerk, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the Moleskine iPhone app, and the “paper notebooks are doomed” theory in the comments below. Also, there was a very thoughtful and nicely written (as opposed to my ramblings) post over at the Goldspot blog that looked at the topic of pen and paper in the world of modern electronics.
©2016, Brian Greene. All rights reserved.