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Google Keep vs OneNote | Which One is the Final Pick in 2020?

Keep vs OneNote
Keep vs OneNote

Looking for Google Keep vs OneNote battle? In the tech world, companies try to tackle down each other. The same is happening here. OneNote is a note-taking service from Microsoft, while Google Keep is the Google version of OneNote. The purpose is the same, but there are some features which are different in both. So, how do Google Keep and OneNote stand against each other? Let’s find out in the ultimate Google Keep vs OneNote comparison.

What this text covers?

The journey of Google Keep vs OneNote starts here, and the desktop and the mobile versions are compared separately.

  1. Keep vs OneNote Desktop
  2. Keep vs OneNote Mobile

Desktop

Google Keep and OneNote Web
Google Keep and OneNote Web

Google Keep is a web-based service which you can access on your browser. You can create notes, checklists, draw or add an image. Keep offers drawing, typing, and pictures in the same note, but it puts everything in a separate space. An extension is also available for Chrome for on-the-go writers. Google Keep offers the below features in notes.

  1. Add text, drawing, image, and checklists
  2. Add reminders
  3. Add People
  4. Change note colour
  5. Add labels
  6. Copy a note
  7. Pin the note to the top

Keep does support the rich text format, but only when you copy text. It does not support any tools like heading, bold, etc. while typing.

OneNote is a desktop app as well as a web-based app that comes with advanced features. It adapts the Office apps design and functions. The Home, Insert, Draw and View menus are on the top. The desktop and web-based have almost the same tools. The features, OneNote offers are below.

  1. Add text, image, audio, checklists, online video, and drawing notes (within the same space).
  2. Share.
  3. Add sticky notes.
  4. It offers rich text editing such as font, size, bold, tables, links, etc.
  5. It offers an advanced drawing menu.

OneNote desktop can store and show typed, drew, images, videos etc. in the same space. Both come with collaborating and printing options, and you need an account to use them both.

Winner: In this Keep vs OneNote desktop comparison, we have the clear winner. Keep has an extension for Chrome, and it offers the necessary tools, but that is not enough. OneNote acquires tools from Office apps which makes it robust and stronger.



Mobile

Homepage and interface

Google Keep vs OneNote - Interface
Google Keep vs OneNote – Interface

Google Keep comes with a simple interface. When you open the app, all the notes are there, while OneNote is different. OneNote shows your Notebooks, and within notebooks, you can create pages (notes). Google Keep shows the type of note on the main interface, while OneNote shows a list of all the notes, and you can see what’s in it by opening the note.

Winner: This round is a tie. Score: Google Keep: 1, OneNote: 1.

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Note types

Google Keep vs OneNote - Notes Types
Google Keep vs OneNote – Notes Types

Both support typing, drawing, voice recording, checklist, and images in notes. OneNote also supports audio and links on mobile. Another feature of OneNote is called flexible canvas, which allows you to place any type of content anywhere. You can also scan documents and business cards straight in the app.

Winner: OneNote is more advanced regarding the types of notes we can take. Score: Google Keep: 1, OneNote: 2.

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Size

Regarding the storage space, Google Keep is lighter than OneNote. On iOS occupies 81 MB of install space, while on Android it only takes 29.7 MB. OneNote, on the other hand, occupies 221 MB of install space on iOS and 183.3 MB on Android.

Winner: Google Keep. Score: Google Keep: 2 and OneNote: 2.

Keep vs OneNote other features comparison

Well, we have covered the critical features now let’s look at some of the other features which may make a difference.

  1. OneNote comes with a badge which floats on the screen at all times. OneNote: 3.
  2. Google Keep has an option to add multiple recipients to the notes who can collaborate. Google Keep: 3.
  3. OneNote has an option to disable syncing while Wi-Fi is not available. OneNote: 4.
  4. Want to set a reminder? Google Keep is there. Google Keep: 4.
  5. OneNote has a fantastic feature which only works on Samsung Galaxy Note phones. If you get the S Pen closer, it will automatically enable drawing mode. OneNote: 5.
  6. Both apps simultaneously sync the notes to the cloud so you can access them on any device. Tie.
  7. You can add rich format text in OneNote. OneNote: 6.
  8. You can add labels to your notes in Google Keep. Google Keep: 5.

Comparison video of both apps on Android

Here is the video showing the comparison of both the apps on Android.

In conclusion

The desktop battle went to OneNote, and the mobile fight as well. The results are Google Keep: 5 and OneNote: 6. Google Keep is useful for collaborating, and it comes with necessary tools which may or may not be enough. For now, OneNote would be the better choice if you are an everyday note keeper.

Google KeepOneNote
iOSiOS
AndroidAndroid

Thanks for checking out Google Keep vs OneNote post. I hope the comparison helped. Please share your views in the comments section so we can discuss more.

Important information: Stratos Stratos creates Google Keep logo under Creative Commons and Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0). Read more at Use of Microsoft Copyrighted Content and Logo and Trademark Permissions on Google.

By Madhsudhan Khemchandani

Hello, my name is Madhsudhan Madh-sudhan). I'm a Software Engineer, graduated from UniSA, Adelaide. I'm the owner, author, and maintainer of this post and the site. Please contact me if you have any questions or feedback.

2 replies on “Google Keep vs OneNote | Which One is the Final Pick in 2020?”

I think these two have vastly different design philosophies. Google Keep is a deliberately simplistic note app with reminder functionality. OneNote is a children of Word and more involved than Keep.
You can easily get the hang of both Keep and OneNote, but I’ll go for Keep, been using it daily for a long while.

I was a big fan of KEEP using it for years on my Samsung android. I switched to Google Pixel3. Today I discovered years of my notes were suddenly gone. I have no idea why or how. Update??? Who knows. Utterly disastrous for me. Google moves stuff to the cloud routinely with or without my permission. But it only stores KEEP notes for seven days. If you buy a new Google phone and the retailer moves all your files to the cloud, you might be in serious trouble if you don’t pay very close attention.

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