Evernote (web) goes by the tagline “remember everything” and it’s latest free app —Hello (iTunes)– becomes a faithful follower of that motto specifically built to help you remember people you meet (for example at a conference).
The features are straightforward and the use quite simple. Meet someone, push the + button and hand over your phone so that your new contact can snap her own photo and add the contact info that she wants to share. The app will also keep track of the location, related calendar entries (for example, the one that says you were at a certain event) and then sync all this info with your Evernote account.
- Pros: simple, practical, syncs with desktop and other platforms for convenient searchability, Mosaic interface for searching through the faces of people met
- Cons: it could feel awkward to pass over your phone to a new acquaintance for her to snap her own photo. Still not a fast/practical enough competitor to paper business cards (but a welcomed entry to the contact exchange universe)
How to make it more useful, especially for events? Release an open API so that other applications can create features that then sync back to Evernote. One practical example could be that of building a collective faceroll of all the attendees by allowing individuals to contribute the photos&contacts they snapped to the total list of participants.
Still, as Joe Brockmeier writes in this ReadWriteWeb article, Evernote’s Hello has a few critical flaws that will prevent it from massive usage (some are: only available on iOS, no possibility of exporting contact info to your Address Book, awkward feeling in having people typing their own info in your phone… especially if compared to how easy it is to exchange paper business cards). But hey, I’m sure that with the release of Hello, Evernote will get more users… which is after all their goal.
Read more about Evernote Hello on their official blog.
Interesting interview to Phil Libin, Evernote’s CEO, on the importance of concentrating your efforts for creating great free products while following a freemium business model.