Not again

A while ago I blogged about an online service called ‘Catch notes’ – a really useful (and free) note taking app that synced with the cloud, enabled sharing and collaboration and had a really cool user interface. It rather abruptly went from ‘next big thing’ to ‘closed forever’ in the space of a few weeks. Well, it’s happened again – and the service I jumped ship to is shutting down tomorrow!

There are several big cloud-based, cross device, note taking apps around – Evernote being the biggest of them. However, at the time I just didn’t feel the App interface offered the features and simplicity I wanted. The closest match I could find was a very nice alternative called SpringPad – and I’ve been using it for almost a year since Catch notes shut down. Well, history is repeating itself and yet again – and another well used and well known app is closing it’s doors.

Whilst they don’t really go into much detail as to why they’re giving up, it’s pretty obvious that it’s tough out there when your main service is free and there are too many other competitors offering similar services. Evernote seems to still be dominating the market now and has a slightly more obvious pricing structure.

Springpad do offer a very simple migrating route to transfer your notes to Evernote (should you wish to jump to that ship). There’s no mention of what happens to any data still left on their servers, so paranoid or not, if you’ve ever used Springpad, it’s probably worth clearing out anything you left in there just in case!

So, I’m off to Evernote. On the plus side, it looks like they are the industry leaders with a pricing model that probably works – but that’s still no guarantee that they’ll be around forever. And as we slowly start to get used to the idea of moving everything digital from our own computers to various cloud-based services, this is yet another timely reminder that the service (and even the data) is no longer ours to control. The online storage wars (ie. Dropbox and other clones) have just begun with loads of services vying for your personal, private and business data – it’s only a matter of time before some fall, so be careful – rely on them, but don’t rely on them TOO much!

Springpad – so long and thanks for all the notes

Evernote – last man standing

read more (The Verge)