UPDATE: Hands-on with Evernote for the Google Android platform

Capturing thoughts and notes is something that many of us do with our smartphones and my favorite cross platform application to perform this is Evernote. I have been asking them for an Android client since I purchased my T-Mobile G1 last year. I read a Tweet about a beta appearing on the Android Market so I have been testing it out and using it on the Sprint HTC Hero the past few days. It is a great first start with support for a few ways to capture notes and I am sure it will get better over time, just like the other mobile clients.

Capturing thoughts and notes is something that many of us do with our smartphones and my favorite cross platform application to perform this is Evernote. I have been asking them for an Android client since I purchased my T-Mobile G1 last year. I read a Tweet about a beta appearing on the Android Market so I have been testing it out and using it on the Sprint HTC Hero the past few days. It is a great first start with support for a few ways to capture notes and I am sure it will get better over time, just like the other mobile clients. I am a bit surprised not to see any mention of this beta release on the Evernote blog yet.

After signing into your Evernote account you are presented the familiar green background display with four large icons that allow you to initiate creation of a photo (snapshot) note, text note, or audio note along with the ability to upload a file. There is a small search box along the bottom and if you use the search then you will be taken to the Evernote mobile website with your search results because offline/cached notes is not supported.

Snapshot/photo note

Tapping the Snapshot icon takes you directly into the camera application. After taking a photo then you will see the standard note entry page with a place for a note title, note content (you can add text to the photo note), which notebook you want to save the note in, and tags you want to apply to the note. After tapping Save then you are taken back to the main notes page.

Text note

A text note initiation takes you right into the standard text note page with the same field as listed above.

Audio note

If you tap to create a voice note, then a page appears with three buttons on it. There is a record and stop button appearing under the timer/status box. After you record, then you can play the note or re-record if you don't like it. To save or discard the note you then need to tap the Menu and choose the right option. I think Evernote can move these two options up onto the display since new users may not realize they need to tap the Menu button first.

Upload a file

Like the Windows Mobile client, you can upload and store files in Evernote with the Upload a file capability. After selecting this option a basic file explorer appears and you navigate to the correct file. After selecting a file then the standard note creation page appears so you can enter a title, note content, select a notebook, and select or enter tags.

Menu options and usage

If you tap the menu icon on the main display you will see options for recent notes, pending notes, check for updates, about Evernote, Location settings, and more (settings and sign out). If you select the settings option then you are taken to the mobile web page for Evernote and logged into your account to manage it.

Selecting recent notes takes you to the mobile website since there is no local note storage in this current version. You can use the GPS in your phone and have location-based info attached to your note.

Evernote for the Google Android platform is similar in functionality to the Palm Pre and I look forward to seeing updates. At this time, the Evernote client fulfills my personal need for Evernote and I am very pleased to see the application on Android.

UPDATE: Sorry folks, I assumed it was available in the Android Market and forgot to mention how I installed it the other day. You actually have to visit this link (http://s.evernote.com/androidbeta) to download and install the beta version. There was also an update released today that adds integrated note viewing with thumbnails to the application so there is no need to launch the browser. They still have some more features to add but I recommend visiting the Evernote forums and staying up to date on what is happening with this platform.