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Office software Reviews
15,669 Reviews

Onenote 2013 review - serious note-taking on tablet

Office costs from £109 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Microsoft

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

The newest member of the Office family is OneNote 2013 - a note-taking app. Here's our OneNote 2013 review.

OneNote 2013

OneNote 2013 is an easy-to-use note-taking and information-management program. You can use it to capture ideas and information in electronic form. OneNote 2013 is the newest member of the Office 2013 clan and was designed with smartphones and tablets in mind, so was, from the start, more attuned to touchscreens and could handle finger or stylus input. It also has handwriting recognition built in and its own audio recorder. See all Office software reviews.

The application uses the analogy of a series of notebooks, each of which can be sub-divided into sections and pages, as needed. On these pages, you can type text, draw directly onto the screen and capture page elements, such as tables from web pages. All these things can then be dragged around on the page and arranged as needed. Finally, pages or items from them can be exported to Word, Excel, PowerPoint or other Office apps. See our reviews of PowerPoint 2013 and Word 2013.

Use OneNote with Excel

The facilities to navigate tables and add headers have been improved, but better than that, you can now create and embed Excel 2013 worksheets directly into a OneNote page – you can do it with Visio drawings, too. Click in a worksheet cell to edit it and the sheet opens in a separate Excel window. Changes are updated in the OneNote version, too, even if you've created the worksheet directly in Excel and then imported all or part into OneNote.

Use OneNote with Outlook

You can now link a OneNote page to a scheduled event in Outlook 2013, so that when the event occurs, the page of notes you previously linked is called up; useful when attending meetings, lectures or presentations. Once there, you can record what's said at the same time as taking notes and the audio is then linked to those notes, so you can refer to both together, when recapping what was said and what you wrote about it. See all: PC Advisor software downloads.

It's not all good, though. It's still none too easy to draw with a finger in OneNote, even though it was designed as a tool for portables. Fingers are just too big to cope with anything detailed. Handwriting also has to be pretty large, which makes it hard for the built in handwriting recognition to do its job properly. It shows the importance of a stylus for serious note-taking on a tablet. Read our full Office 2013 review. For more business software reviews visit Business Advisor.

OneNote 2013 Expert Verdict »

Microsoft Office Professional 2013 reviews verified by Reevoo

Microsoft Office Professional 2013Scores 8.6 out of 10 based on 8 reviews
1 GHz or faster x86 or 64-bit processor with SSE2 instruction set
1 GB RAM (32-bit)
2 GB RAM (64-bit)
3.0 GB available disk space
Graphics hardware acceleration requires a DirectX10 graphics card and 1366 x 768 resolution
Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2012
Microsoft Internet Explorer 8, 9, or 10
Mozilla Firefox 10.x or a later version
Apple Safari 5
or Google Chrome 17.x
.Net version: 3.5, 4.0, or 4.5
A touch-enabled device is required to use any multi-touch functionality
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

Use OneNote well and it is a useful and intuitive tool. You probably won't want to buy it outright, but as part of Office's arsenal it is a good inclusion.

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