Evernote Updates Its Penultimate App Following Criticism, Showing Tech Firms Do Listen

Here’s a positive story about tech companies and their awareness of the outside world, just in case this week had you disillusionedEvernote today issued a fix for its Penultimate digital handwriting app for the iPad that it hopes will end more than a week of frustration for its users.

Evernote bought the service, which lets you create notes and designs as if you are using paper, more than two years ago, but a major upgrade issued just over a week ago caused a series of issues for users. Changes to Penultimate 6.0’s feature set — including a new zoom mode, the merging of all notebooks, navigation difficulties and more — drew a large number of complaints.

That anger was reflected by a flurry of one star ratings for the app, while Evernote’s forums were abuzz with negative feedback, and many of those affected were vocal on Twitter.

“We’re sorry. We screwed up. We’ve heard your feedback, and are going to make things better,” Evernote wrote in response six days after update 6.0 landed. The company admitted that it released the new version too soon.

It promised a swift update two days ago, and that landed today. Evernote said the new version of the app adds “the top features and enhancements that have been requested over the past week.”

There still appear to be some problems — some people who registered before the acquisition seem to have lost their notes; Evernote is investigating — and it’s too early to say what users think, but Evernote has responded in the right way.

The company got a lot of criticism following the initial 6.0 update, but it seems that many customers appreciate how it responded. It’s not all love — and no doubt some users have been lost from the saga — but when mistakes happen honesty is the best policy. (Of course, Evernote does have past experience here.)


In the wake of a hugely challenging week for Uber — which has been called out for a lack of morals following two high profile and unsavory incidents — this tale, while not earth-shatteringly significant, is a reminder that some members of the Silicon Valley tech set can be human after all.