I have been using a notes app, Notesly+, since 2011. It offered a clean interface and most importantly for any data intense app, sync/backup to Dropbox. In early May I discovered that sync via Dropbox was broken. I tried deleting/recreating the account and got the same error. After running into the same problem yesterday I contacted the developer and was sadly informed that he has chosen to discontinue the product, even though the app is still available in the Windows Store. He went on to explain that he hasn’t had a sale ($0.99) in over a year.

It’s not surprising that apps will come and go as time moves on, but for apps that collect and store data on your phone, the pain is always a little greater. I can still copy info from the app and paste into another (or pull the raw data from the DB backup), so all is not lost. But’s it’s still a PITA. WARNING: If you are planning to upgrade to a new Windows Phone, check that you data capture apps are still active. If not, you make want to seek out alternatives now, before transitioning to a new device.

Being a young OS that’s still struggling to grow market share I don’t know if there is a simple solution to risking the loss of valuable data. I can move all of these notes to OneNote, which I already use extensively. That’s probably a more stable, reliable repository for data. But the developer made some good points in that regard.

It sucks, I know.  I have had the same problem even with big companies.  I remember when Microsoft discontinued Microsoft Money and I had to switch to Quicken.  And recently Google shut down Google Reader which I have been using for over 5 years. As consumers, there is really nothing we can do.  Companies will always shut down products that are not profitable. As business owners, we have to make sure we create profitable and sustainable products.

I had big hopes for [Notesly] but unfortunately the Windows Phone platform hasn’t been as wildly successful as I hoped.

While looking at several Dropbox type apps I have installed on my phone I discovered another app, DropNotes, has the same Dropbox sync issue (probably due to some changes Dropbox made recently). Not sure if that app is done just yet, but as it hasn’t been updated in a very long time, I would guess yes.

I am still waiting (and hoping) for apps like Notesly+ to offer a Windows 8 solution, where the potential market is huge. Syncing between desktop/notebook/tablet devices and a Windows Phone is a win-win. That’s where I think the money is, and that’s where developers need to focus their efforts.

5 COMMENTS

  1. I think Microsoft is doing too little to promote the apps developed by individuals

  2. Probably true. From my experience, if an Indie app does not catch fire out of the gate, it is doomed to the quagmire know by many names; App Store, Play, Marketplace. More apps just makes it easier for them to get lost. I occasionally find a diamond in the rough, and do my best to promote them when I do. But I am sure I have overlook hundreds of deserving apps along the way. Maybe Microsoft should be looking at new indie entries, like I used to do (before it became overwhelming) and cue up the cream of the crop for highlights of the week. An app without a review is not necessarily bad. It may just be waiting to be discovered.

  3. Is their a way to report these paid apps that are broken and no longer being supported? I would like to report Board Express Pro because the search feature on it has been broken for quite some time. Grantee its not a big deal now since Tapatalk is finally available, but people should be warned besides just leaving a review.

  4. Evidently, there is only so much space in the market created by Evernote. You might try it out.

  5. Jeremy: I noticed something on my L510 (WP8) in Marketplace labeled, “Report concern to Microsoft”. But apparently not available for WP7.8.

    Durshin: That’s just it though. Evernote and OneNote can do so much more than I need for these simple lists and notes. Notesly was simple. No wait to sync before using. Get in, get out, and get on with my life. Moving my stuff into Notes Pro, another excellent simple notes app. But the interface could use some work.

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