A great note-taking app with an incredible amount of functionality for free. A CAD 4.89 upgrade gets you cloud sync via Google Drive and more.
This week's app is D Notes which was developed by Damian (the "D") van den Berg from across the globe in Cape Town, South Africa.
I had a beta version of D Notes installed for a long time which caused it to sit further down in my backlog. This morning I realized there's a non-beta version. I still see the
2.1.19-beta version from 2018 in Google Play which is odd.
D Notes is a great app and I wish that I had figured out sooner that it was out of beta. Although it doesn't support Markdown, it has pretty much everything needed for rapid note-taking plus more. You can attach images or videos, speak your notes and have them converted to text, and you can share a note with its attachments via email. All that for free. That said it's not completely rosy.
There are some improvements that could be made in the settings of the app. It was confusing that the category colour can be changed but then you need to make sure a box is checked to update all of the existing notes assigned to that category to have the new colour. The same goes for the text font size: when you change it in settings, you have to make sure it applies to all your notes. This is one of the only apps that I've seen where you can have different font sizes per note. Theoretically interesting but practically confusing to a user.
Another issue is that I was able to inadvertently set the colours where the note body text was black and the background was black which made me think the note was gone! This shouldn't be allowed to happen.
There are a good number of fonts to choose from but most of them are fonts that I would never use. I recognize it's subjective but more and more I realize how important a font is to ensure that I continue wanting to use a given app.
When an audio recording is attached to a note, the note has a huge microphone icon added and that icon takes up too much space. As you add attachments, the icon gets smaller which is good. This could be useful if the note is primarily an audio note but the icon is too big by default.
The above are not major issues, just added friction. I got through them this morning and have it set up the way I like. I purchased the Pro version to recognize how much work was put into the app and I will keep D Notes installed and excitedly anticipate some future updates by Damian.
Read on to hear about the ugly, bad, good, great, and awesome features of D Notes. I think you'll like the app and hopefully support the developer by buying the Pro version.
I developed a note-taking app in my final year at university, which is available to download on the Google Play Store.
D Notes will be the most beautifully designed and intuitive note App you have ever used. Choose from many customization options to personalize your note-taking experience. 
- Score: 8/10
- Version: 2.4.0
- Device: Samsung Galaxy S20 5G
- Google Play rating: 4.6*
- Developer: Damian van den Berg
- Location: Cape Town, South Africa
- Standard: Free
- Pro: CAD 4.98 (one-time)
- Can set the colours to be white text on a white background or black on black
- The huge microphone button takes up too much space
- Somehow my notes were not being coloured based on the category colour and it took me 30 mins to figure out it's the "Dark Note Cards" setting that I changed, doh!
- No help
- No toolbar
- No undo or redo (but there is a "Discard changes" button)
- No bullet list
- No Markdown support
- No PDF export
- No search within a note
- Cannot tell what a font will look like without going out/into Settings each time
- Cannot check off a checklist item from the notes list
- The last big update was
2020-11-28with bug fixes in
- Sync to Google Drive stores my notes as hidden data vs. JSON or plain text (of course I would want Markdown!)
- Doesn't support
YYYY-MM-DDdate format (very minor as it does have
- Can't link notes
- Favourite a note
- Shows the last edited date and time
- Checklists (all or nothing)
- Share via email
- 13 fonts
- 16 font sizes
- Export to text
- Archive a note
- Duplicate a note
- Copy the entire note's contents
- Note categories with colours
- Attach multiple images and videos
- Backup/Restore from Google Drive
- 6 date formats (see Bad)
- Sort by title, edited date, created date, reminder, category, colour
- Sets the subject line to the Note title when sharing via email
- 3 widgets
- Font size per note
- Colour a note with one of 43 great colours
- Grid or list view
- 4 Android quick actions
- Reading mode
- Speaks the note or checklists using text-to-speech
- Export to JSON
- Filter by notes with attachments, archived notes, notes with reminders, favourited notes
- Add audio recording
- Attach other types of files like PDF, text files
- Lock notes with passcode and fingerprint
- Reminders on notes
- Shows image previews in the notes list
- Archive a note
- Option to show attachments at the top, middle, or bottom of a note
- Add shortcut to note on Android home screen
- Reading mode hides some of the Android window chrome so you can see more of the note text
- Feedback form
- Add a header image to the sidebar menu – that's the part of the Dilbert @ comic in the screenshot
- The Free version has oodles of functionality and no ads
- The Pro version is only CAD 4.85
- Launches very fast
- Works offline
- Sync to Google Drive (see Bad)
- Speech-to-text input
- Backup/restore to/from SD Card
- Auto backup to SD card
- Swipe to archive or trash
- Pin note to the notification bar
- Customize how the attachments are shown, i.e., how many columns of attachments: from 1 to 6
- Customize the swipe actions
Have a great weekend and happy note-taking!