And, it happens to be a BIG thing.
I assumed that Bear would match Evernote across the board when it comes to what I consider to be basic, necessary functionality. So, I didn’t even bother to check to see how Bear handled PDF files. Evernote acts like my external brain. I use it to scan business cards, receipts, and anything else that’s a “hard copy” — so I can search and find them—as well as what’s in them—later. Evernote’s Premium level allows me to include searchable PDF files.
I’ll assume responsiblity for taking it for granted that an app winning Apple’s Editor’s Choice Award — and repeatedly billed as superior to Evernote — would include this service, too. So I purchased the Bear Pro version.
Not only does Bear *not* offer this function, but there isn't even a way to view PDFs inline using their desktop or mobile apps. I’m reduced to seeing nothing but a list of titles and corresponding icons. On the desktop version, the icon opens up the scanned image in Preview. Even several days later, tapping on the icon on the mobile app version does nothing. I was hoping it was just a matter of waiting for everything to sync.
My objective was to replace Evernote with Bear. But I also use Evernote to scan all of my bills and receipts. At the end of the year, it’s a simple matter of using the search function to scan everything for keywords and prepare for tax return filing. No matter what format—web clipping, PDF, original note—I can use Evernote's search function to find things. Unfortunately, it appears that Bear doesn’t include searchable PDFs. I’ll have to stick with Evernote for now, and hope that Bear offers this functionality some time in the future.
I think Bear’s approach to filing using hashtags is superior. From what I’m able to tell, it even does a better job at searching than Evernote. It’s intuitive, and aesthetically superior to Evernote. It’s far less expensive than Evernote—but maybe that’s why I can include, view, and search PDFs in Evernote, and it’s not possible with Bear. I toyed with the idea of using Bear for everything but PDFs, but that means using TWO applications, and paying for both.
Hopefully, Bear is in the process of matching this Evernote functionality. I’d gladly even pay more for it. In the meantime, I’ll just admire Bear from afar, wishing I could use it.