There’s something strangely exhilarating about seeing old school brands adopt 21st century technology. Like Polaroid diving into the digital action cam market. Or 3M, the inventors of the original Post-it notepad, jumping into the app sphere. Yes, even Post-its aren’t immune to the smartphone revolution.
Post-it Plus, the app in question, has given 3M a way to keep its low-tech product relevant, ensuring continued sales of the iconic office fixture while adapting it to the digital world. It’s even managed to one-up the legions of smartphone note taking apps through a little bit of old fashioned creativity.
Using Post-it Plus is simple. When you launch the app, it asks for permission to access your iPhone’s camera. Once you give the okay, you can take a snapshot of a bunch of your regular old Post-it notes — up to 50 in a single shot. After you take a snapshot, the app identifies the individual Post-it notes within the frame of the image with a green check mark. You can then tap on the individual notes in the photo to isolate them, crop them, rearrange them, section them out into different categories (or “boards” as they’re called here), and then export them digitally.
From there, you can export your notes via a proprietary function, or you can convert the file to PDF, PowerPoint, Excel or ZIP file. When that’s done, you can share everything through SMS, email, or cloud storage lockers like Box, Dropbox and OneDrive. All of this is compatible with Evernote too. You can even invite other app users over to your board and work collaboratively.
Diving into the app settings, you’ll find you can turn on photo gridlines and even toggle “capture hints,” which remind you to do standard things like holding the camera steady or keeping your surroundings well-lit while shooting. You can also pick between two different shutter options: single tap or touch-and-hold.
This is a pretty perfect app for what it is, with one exception: There’s no optical character recognition (OCR) support. Having that would make the app even more functional for those who’d rather not manually transcribe sloppy handwriting into document format when they want to make their info more professionally presentable. You can zoom in on a scanned sticky, but you can’t rewrite what’s already there.
Post-it Plus isn’t the first app to take sticky notes digital, but it’s an official solution that’s easy to use and accurate in its scans. It requires iOS 8.0 or later, works with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, and is available now as a free download from iTunes.