PlainText for iPad- app review

If you are looking for a simple text editor with a clean, professional interface, PlainText might just be for you. Hog Bay Software has created a quaint little document app that goes out of it's way to do simple editing. The main benefit this app has over the built-in Notes app is that you can define and create folders; the level of editing is the same.

The first thing you will notice about PlainText is its icon. It is the shape of a formatting mark on a typical word processor. Once you open Plain Text you see a list of documents on the left and the first available document open on the right. To begin typing, tap anywhere in the document to begin. If you want a full screen typing experience, there is a full screen icon in the lower right. Tap to make full screen, tap again to bring back the document list.

There are no formatting options in PlainText... it is just that, plain text. What does separate this app from say, the Notes app on iPad is the ability to add documents to folders. Tap the new folder icon and you can create as many folders as you would like. However, you should be aware that you can't move a document from to a folder after the document it created; you must create the file in the folder you want. I am sure this will be an enhancement in an upcoming release.

The next question you are asking yourself is how do I get these notes to my iPhone, after all it's a universal app. The easiest way to use Dropbox. You can set this up directly from Settings in the app and you are ready to rock. However, if you want to use another tool, try PadSync.

Overall I like the simple and great aesthetic nature of the application. There are just a couple of quibbles that are preventing it form stardom. One of the big ones for me is the inability to move files between folders. Perhaps it's there and I am missing it, but I sure couldn't find it. Additional features are planned (here is a list from the next beta as of this writing) and it has been submitted to the App Store. I would check the blog regularly for updates and suggestions.

[Free- iTunes Link]

TiPb iPad 3.5-star rated

Pros

  • Free!
  • Create folders
  • Universal App

Cons

  • Only syncs with DropBox (where is MobileMe?)
  • Can use app PadSync http://ecamm.com/mac/padsync/ to get data from Mac to iPad
  • Can't move a document to an existing folder

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Chad Garrett

Software trainer, blogger and mobile technology enthusiast living in the suburban Midwest.

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PlainText for iPad- app review

5 Comments

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Sacha

I'm surprised you didn't mention the lack of search. PlainText offers no search…yet.
The dev IS considering it for a future version though.

It's actually quite simple to move notes between folders.
Just open up your dropbox/plaintext folder on your mac, and you can move notes around as you wish.
These changes will then be synced back to simpletext.
Agree with Dazaroorie though, in that it needs a search function !

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I use this app and I disagree with "Gavin" ... the APP does not allow this, per se. This is most frustrating. If the iPad is really "next gen" to a PC I should not have to always go to my PC to actually accomplish anything. Going to a PC (mac or windows) to then go to dropbox, to then manipulate folders, is unacceptable.
I like the simplicity of this app and I like that it uses Dropbox...I would like just a TINY bit more functionality, such as folder organization and simple moving of notes to various folders. Right now that is too kludgy. For a free app this is ok, but this is why I don't bother upgraded to no-ads ... it is not worth it.