CEO Update: What We’ve Been Working On and Where We Go From Here

As a new year gets underway, many people focus on self-improvement, setting goals and committing to new habits. Here at Evernote, we do the same. And so, as we all get used to writing “2022” instead of “2021,” this is a good moment to reflect on Evernote’s progress through the past year and lean into what we have planned for the year ahead.

We’ve been busy

In my last post on the Evernote blog, I said that Evernote’s newest features, like Home, Tasks, and Calendar, “expand the vista of what Evernote can do for you.” Time has proven that statement true. Evernote’s new building blocks convert our newly reinvigorated mission of "remember everything and accomplish anything" into concrete capabilities for our users. At the same time, our reconfigured product lineup—Evernote Free, Evernote Personal, Evernote Professional, and Evernote Teams—build upon that foundation of new productivity features and better reflect how customers use our product.

Over the course of the year, we also:

We made a large number of incremental improvements. We relentlessly tuned and improved search functionality to deliver more accurate results, more quickly; added new widgets and more configurability for Home (hello, filtered notes and tasks widgets!); and watched with joy as Professional users configured Home for the holidays. Under the hood, we continued to streamline and improve our infrastructure to deliver a more reliable, more robust, and safer Evernote experience for you.

In the second half of 2021, we invested even more energy into performance improvements and overall software stabilization. We know from measuring performance and reliability across our entire user base that the apps we’re shipping today are faster and more stable across a number of key metrics than they were even six months ago. The mobile apps released at the beginning of January 2022 brought a new round of improvements that sharply reduce the time for an inactive app to come to the foreground, allowing Android and iOS users to get to their notes and tasks much more quickly. 

And so, as I look back at 2021, I believe we succeeded in delivering on our promise of a better Evernote. The Evernote of January 2022 is stronger in all regards than the one available a year earlier. New functionality; better performance; improved reliability. 

That continuous improvement is reflected in our business results. I want to personally thank each and every one of you who continued to support us by renewing your subscription in 2021—and say just as big a thank you to those who joined the Evernote family for the first time last year.

Your subscriptions propelled Evernote to its highest annual sales in history, resulting in a healthy and strong business. We’ve been leveraging that strength by reinvesting your support back into the business, hiring across all functions in 2021 to increase the size and depth of the team building your Evernote. And we’re not done—we plan to continue expanding in 2022.

More than anything, though, what matters is your own, personal Evernote experience, and what could make it even better. Perhaps you’re waiting for a particular feature or OS-specific integration; maybe you’d like a usability adjustment or performance optimization specific to your workflow. Your collected feedback gives us scope for improvement and innovation across a wide spectrum, one that ranges from enhancements to our new functionality all the way to fundamental improvements that lie at the core of our service. 

While we made performance gains in 2021, we know that we still have work remaining. Apps can always benefit from being faster and more responsive no matter what platform they are on, so performance optimization is a job that is never done. We will continue to deliver performance and stability improvements across all our platforms over the months ahead. 

Looking ahead

In 2022, as we expand our focus beyond our current performance and stabilization push, we will deliver across this entire spectrum, ranging from small enhancements to more significant wins. As part of improving the core Evernote experience, we'll ship long-awaited screen widgets for Android and iOS. We'll shrink the time it takes to load and display large notes in the editor. We'll improve the overall application upgrade experience, making it faster and less disruptive. We'll improve support for Apple's M1 chips in our Mac desktop app. And most importantly, over the course of 2022, we will complete our multi-year journey to a more reliable, faster, and more modern sync architecture—the very backbone of the Evernote experience.

We’ll also be shipping exciting improvements to even our newest features. In the coming weeks, we expect to launch notification support for connected Google Calendars. Validated by both user tests and internal use at Evernote, we know that a friendly nudge that lets you quickly open and/or create notes for upcoming meetings is the killer feature for those of you who have already integrated your Google Calendar into Evernote—a big step on your path to meeting mastery. For our existing Calendar users, this feature will start working automatically; you’ll be able to fine-tune it from within the widget’s settings. Then, we’ll turn our attention to extending support beyond Google Calendar users, starting with those who manage their schedules in Microsoft Office 365.

Manage your to-dos more easily with Tasks in Evernote.

On the Tasks front, our first app release of 2022 introduced "My Tasks" into the Tasks view, as the first of a series of improvements to Tasks you can expect in 2022. Beyond that, you’ve told us that recurring tasks is the killer feature that’s missing; we heard the request and expect to go into beta in the first quarter, and to ship that capability to our Personal, Professional, and Teams subscribers soon after. If you're a Personal, Professional or Teams subscriber and would like to be one of the first to see recurring tasks in action, sign up for our Early Access program.

In 2021, we redefined Evernote as an app with which you could remember anything and accomplish anything. In 2022, we will be building on that promise by continuing to improve Evernote across all its dimensions and for all our customers. Your feedback and engagement are helping us define the road ahead; your support and commitment motivates us and gives us the fuel to accelerate down it. 2021 was the best year in Evernote's history; we’re dedicated to improving on that in 2022, continuing to earn your ongoing support as we work together to build an #everbetter Evernote.