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Top 6 OneNote Alternatives & Competitors (Features, Pricing, and Pros and Cons)

Yanxi Liu


In today's fast-paced world, productivity is critical to success, and with the advancement in technology, we have access to a plethora of tools to help us achieve our goals. One such tool that has been a favorite of students, business professionals, and creative minds for a long time is Microsoft's OneNote.

However, with the ever-changing landscape of technology, it's always good to have various options. So, if you're looking for something fresh and innovative in 2023, you're in luck! We've covered you with a list of the 6 best OneNote alternatives worth exploring!

These alternatives offer a range of features, including collaboration tools, cloud storage options, and much more. Whether you're a student, entrepreneur, or creative professional, there's sure to be an option that suits your needs. So, let's dive in and explore the exciting world of productivity tools!

What is Microsoft OneNote?


Microsoft OneNote: It is a fantastic digital note-taking app that lets you capture and organize all your ideas, notes, and information in one convenient place. With OneNote, you can easily keep track of everything from your daily to-do list to your most creative ideas. It offers a range of powerful organizational tools, including page tabs, tags, to-do lists, and formatting options for text and tables. In addition, you can even record audio notes to capture essential meetings or lectures.


  • Take notes in various formats, including text, images, audio, and video.

  • A powerful search function that can search across all of your notes, making it easy to find specific information.

  • Highly customizable

  • Integrates seamlessly with other Microsoft Office applications (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint).

Pros of OneNote:

  • A highly versatile note-taking tool that can be used for various purposes, from personal note-taking to business collaboration.

  • Available on a wide range of devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones, making it easy to access your notes from anywhere.

Limitations of OneNote:

  • Can’t buy it individually.

  • Require a Microsoft Office 365 plan

  • Limited integration with other apps

  • Limited search functionality


  • OneNote is free as part of the Microsoft Office suite of applications, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more.

  • Microsoft 365 pricing starts at $5 per user per month.

Top 6 OneNote Alternatives & Competitors

Although OneNote has long been a go-to app for note-taking and organization, it's not the only option out there. Whether you're looking for a more streamlined interface, enhanced collaboration features, or simply a change of pace, there are plenty of alternatives to OneNote to consider. Here are 6 note-taking apps worth exploring.




AFFiNE is a cutting-edge task management software designed to assist with organizing, managing, and collaborating on tasks, projects, and information. It is a next-generation knowledge base that combines the best features of popular apps such as Notion and Miro into one powerful, flexible, and user-friendly platform. AFFiNE prioritizes data security, privacy, and collaboration, making it an ideal choice for managing daily plans, personal knowledge repositories, and team projects.

Key features:

  • Multiple workspaces: Create different workspaces to manage various types of data, like managing your daily tasks, personal knowledge repository, and team projects simultaneously.

  • Pages within workspaces: Organize your tasks, notes, and ideas in different pages within each workspace, making it easy to navigate and find what you need.

  • Powerful search functionality: Quickly locate the documents, tags, or actions you want with a modern search app that can handle multiple workspaces and pages.

  • Time tracking and goal setting: Use AFFiNE’s built-in features to track your time spent on tasks and set goals to improve your productivity.


  • Database: With our new system, you can effortlessly generate, arrange, and monitor your everyday duties in a manner that was never before possible. You no longer have to deal with complicated procedures and can instead enjoy an unparalleled level of convenience.



  • Open source: AFFiNE allows users to access and modify the source code, providing greater transparency and flexibility. This means that users can customize the app to suit their specific needs, add new features, or fix any bugs they encounter. Furthermore, AFFiNE can foster a community of developers and contributors who can work together to improve the app's functionality and security.

  • Privacy-first: Privacy is a top concern for many users, especially regarding sensitive information such as personal notes. A privacy-first note-taking app ensures that user data is protected and not shared with third-party companies or advertisers. This can be achieved through features such as end-to-end encryption, data residency options, and user consent mechanisms. By prioritizing privacy, a note-taking app can build trust with its users and establish itself as a secure and reliable platform.

  • Local-first: A local-first note-taking app stores data locally on the user's device, rather than in the cloud. This provides several benefits, including faster access to notes, offline availability, and greater control over user data. Additionally, a local-first app can offer features such as automatic backups, version control, and seamless synchronization between devices. By prioritizing local storage, a note-taking app can provide a more reliable and robust user experience.


  • AFFiNE may not have as many features or integrations as other productivity tools.

  • Some users may prefer a cloud-first approach instead of the local-first approach offered by AFFiNE.


Pricing: FREE

AFFiNE is an exceptional task management application that is entirely free and open to all users who want to take advantage of its powerful capabilities. It is a pleasant surprise for individuals who are looking for a comprehensive solution to their daily task management needs.

In the future, we will supply some advanced features and AFFiNE Cloud uses. If you are interested, please check the specific Pricing plan.

For more things related to AFFiNE, come and check out the Official website:


Overview: Bear is a note-taking app available exclusively on Apple devices. It is known for its clean and straightforward interface, as well as its ability to organize notes using tags and hashtags.


Key Features:

  • Markdown support for easy formatting

  • Ability to add images and files to notes

  • Focus mode to minimize distractions

  • Syncs across all Apple devices using iCloud


  • Simple and intuitive interface

  • Good for organizing notes with tags and hashtags


  • Only available on Apple devices

  • No web or Android app


Bear offers a free version with limited features, as well as a subscription-based Pro version that costs 1.49/month or14.99/year.


Overview: ClickUp is a project management app that offers a wide range of features, including task management, time tracking, and team collaboration.[图片]Key Features:


Key Features:

  • Customizable task boards

  • Time tracking and reporting

  • Team collaboration and communication tools

  • Goal tracking and progress visualization


  • Customizable task boards for different workflows

  • Good for team collaboration and communication


  • The interface can be overwhelming for new users

  • Some features may require additional paid add-ons


ClickUp offers a free version with limited features, as well as a subscription-based plan that starts at $5/user/month.


Overview: Evernote is a popular note-taking app that has been around for over a decade. It offers a wide range of features, including note organization, task management, and team collaboration.


Key Features:

  • Note organization using notebooks and tags

  • Task management and reminders

  • Team collaboration and communication tools

  • Web clipper for saving articles and web pages


  • Wide range of features for note-taking and task management

  • Web clipper is a useful feature for research and saving articles


  • Interface can be overwhelming for new users

  • Some features may require additional paid add-ons


Evernote offers a free version with limited features, as well as a subscription-based plan that starts at $7.99/user/month.


Overview: Notability is a note-taking app that is designed specifically for Apple devices. It offers a wide range of features, including handwriting recognition, audio recording, and PDF annotation.


Key Features:

  • Handwriting recognition for digital note-taking

  • Audio recording and playback

  • PDF annotation and markup

  • Cloud syncing with other devices


  • Good for digital note-taking with handwriting recognition

  • Audio recording is a useful feature for lectures and meetings


  • Only available on Apple devices

  • No web or Android app


Notability is a paid app that costs $8.99 on the App Store.



Overview: Notion is a productivity app that offers a wide range of features, including note-taking, project management, and team collaboration. It is known for its highly customizable interface and flexible use cases.

Key Features:

  • Customizable templates for different use cases

  • Task management and project tracking

  • Team collaboration and communication tools

  • Database and spreadsheet functionality


  • Highly customizable interface for different use cases

  • Database and spreadsheet functionality is a useful feature for organizing data


  • Interface can be overwhelming for new users

  • Some features may require additional paid add-ons


Notion offers a free version with limited features, as well as a subscription-based plan that starts at $4/user/month.


Here we recommend the Top 6 OneNote alternative apps and introduce their unique and appealing features as well as the pros and cons of notetaking apps. We encourage users to choose the ideal option based on their specific needs and pain points. However, based on our evaluation, we still propose AFFiNE as the optimal choice.

AFFiNE offers unique features such as real-time collaboration, advanced quality control, and project management capabilities. Although it is currently in beta, we are actively working on developing a more feature-rich and stable platform. We invite you to join us on our journey by following us on our social media platforms.

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