Business app of the week: Microsoft OneNote for iPad

There are a number of note-taking apps out there, but in our eyes none quite match the excellent Microsoft OneNote. Letting you sync, back up and organise your notes on iPad as well as across all your desktops and devices, it’s almost made us forget jotters even existed.

What is Microsoft OneNote for iPad?

Microsoft OneNote (Microsoft Corporation, free) is available for free for any platform, be it Windows 7/8, Android or iOS, but we’re looking specifically at the OneNote app for iPad here. Like Apple’s own Notes app, which comes pre-loaded on iPad, or other solutions like Evernote, it essentially lets you take notes, capture thoughts and ideas and set to-dos on your tablet wherever you are, be it in the office, out on the road or in a meeting, but packs a few other tricks up its sleeve which set it apart from the competition too.

How does it work?

The great thing about OneNote is that any notes you take in the iPad app will automatically be synced with any other desktop computers and devices that you have the OneNote app installed on too. It’s really quite impressive!

If you’ve already got a Microsoft Account (these are free to set up if you don’t), you just need to sign into the app using your credentials, and everything gets saved in the cloud on Microsoft’s OneDrive service. You can then share notes with colleagues to collaborate on in realtime, and quickly search through them using keywords to easily find what you’re looking for.

Who is it for?

The best application for OneNote we have found is definitely for taking down ideas in meetings, so it’s brilliant for the business environment. Equally, it would be ideal for a field salesperson to jot down notes while on the road, or while meeting a client face-to-face, then continue to work on them on their desktop or laptop machine when they get back to the office. (Oh, and it’s pretty handy for creating and ticking off your weekly shopping list too!)

What’s the best feature?

One of the most interesting features (and certainly one that sets it apart from Notes, Evernote et al) is the whiteboard feature. Say your business meeting has resulted in a pretty epic flowchart taking up the whiteboard, and you want to save it before it gets wiped away – simply point your iPad and take a snap, and OneNote automatically crops and optimises your picture to be shared. Take a look at this quick example from  our Warhol-inspired meeting room…

Using the whiteboard function in OneNote

How much is it and where can I get it?

Microsoft OneNote for iPad (Microsoft Corporation, free) is completely free, as is the desktop version. Both can be downloaded from the App Store on your Mac and iPad, as well as from iTunes. If you’re an Office 365 user, there’s also the option to go pro with OneNote, which gives you access to premium features such as audio and video capture (you can check out Microsoft Office 365 subscriptions here).

– Missed last week’s app review? Check out Parallels Access for iPad here.

Want to know more about making the most of iPad in business? Give our team a call on 03332 409 306 or email For all the latest news and tips, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or ‘Like’ us on Facebook


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