Saturday, July 16, 2016

Evernote Raises Prices & Degrades Service for Basic Users: Is It Worth It for Education Users?

Evernote is increasing its pricing for Premium users and Plus users while degrading service to those who have chosen to use the service's Basic option. I have been an Evernote user and a premium user since May of 2010, and I have often blogged about its capabilities as note taking software. I have also led staff and professional development about the product. I still use it every day, both personally and professionally. Still, I hope Evernote knows what it is doing.

In a blog post (see "Changes to Evernote's Pricing Plans") the company claims that it "doesn't take change to our pricing model lightly, and we never take you for granted."

I certainly hope so. I certainly understand that companies like Evernote need to raise revenue for improvements, but this personally places me at a price point where I begin to ask the question, "Is the yearly subscription price worth it?"  It's not like there aren't other less expensive options out there. For example, I've used and still use Microsoft's OneNote, and I could so easily switch to it and accomplish what I want with that software, or even find some other alternative, but I have loyalty to Evernote as a great product, but changes in prices and functionality weaken my loyalty as a long-time user.

At this point, I will wait and see what Evernote does with the added revenue, but I do have these words of caution for Evernote. I am not a business user, so I do not really care to see improvements that make the product better for corporate America, unless these also improve my own functionality. To assume that those business improvements to Evernote software make it a better product for my job as an educator and education scholar is a mistake. Often companies forget core users in their efforts to capture new markets. I hope this isn't what Evernote is doing.

As an educator, I chose Evernote in 2010 because it was a great note-taking platform that was inexpensive, versatile, and accessible across devices. At that time, it didn't pretend to do something else. It was reliable. It did exactly what I wanted it for. But this is important: Improvements of a product aren't always improvements to all users.

If Evernote is making these changes in pricing and packaging to go after business users, there is the danger that they are forgetting us, the education users and everyday users who have been passionately loyal, like in my case, for 6 years.

I am not at the point of cancelling my Evernote account yet, but I want that company to know that I will be watching out for those "improvements." If I am going to be paying more for Evernote, then you can bet my expectations for your product have gone up as well. Your claim that you aren't "taking me for granted" will only prove true over time.

1 comment:

  1. I have no problem paying for a service I use as extensively as I do with Evernote. With the new CEO, I think we are going to see some changes to the UI and features. Evernote has features that no other system does and I have no problem paying for it, especially with inflation.