Friday, March 28, 2014

How "Free" is MS OneNote

I have always balked at the advertisements that promise "free gifts" because if it isn't free, it isn't a gift either. The expression represents a pleonasm. Now, Micro Soft is not into giving "free gifts" at all. Though OneNote is said to be "free," it is only a crippled version that is offered without payment. As you can read here, if you want to have a notebook on your computer, you need to "subscribe to Office to continue using this notebook.” And that is $9.99 a month ... please.

It is O.K., of course, to have a crippled free version and a premium version for which you have to pay. It's an old business model in software. But $9.99 a month is a bit steep, and it would be good, if Micro Soft was more up front about what is going on. Not that any of this bothers me very much, as I have never been impressed with OneNote's Notebook system that forces you to put notes into container-like topics. It seems to me, and please pardon my French, "back-arsewards."


Tim said...

I really don't understand what MS has done here - I downloaded and installed the 'free' OneNote.

After only a few minutes of use I got the following pop up message:

"subscribe to office to continue using this notebook"

I continued to use the notebook, and no more messages have appeared.

Am I missing something here?

Is OneNote free or do I have to subscribe? Microsoft isn't doing me any favours with advertising that it is free, then deploying 'pay to use' messages like this.

MK said...

I think you can continue the stripped-down version with an online notebook.