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Looking for a smartphone, that has a functional version of OneNote (functional search)

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David2234    0

Hello,

 

I've stumbled on the above-mentioned thread, when googling "Best phone for OneNote search", and thought I might as well give it a try. I'm looking for a smartphone (not iOS), on which a functional version of OneNote, is available.

 

I have an iPhone 5, where the OneNote app works alright, but it's major, and for me most crucial 'shortcoming' in its functionality, is that it simply doesn't have a working search function whatsoever. It takes forever for the search to show relevant results and from my experience, it just never happens. So in other words, on iPhone 5, it is completely and entirely broken, making the app close to absolutely useless for me. Don't know what Microsoft was thinking when they put it out, but Microsoft, eh?

 

So thus, I'm looking for an (extra) smartphone, with Android OS I presume (never used Android before), that has a 'fully' functional OneNote counterpart. Particularly, and most important for me, with a working search function, that doesn't take forever.

 

I have a quite big OneNote (as in many sections, subsections pages, etc.) in general which I use very often, so it would be super helpful, to have it with me here and there and have it work

 

Hopefully someone out there has some experience with this, and could share their thoughts. Perhaps the OneNote search function is also not working on Android? Or perhaps it's just the limitation of iPhone 5, where other iPhone iterations have a fixed search function (many apps on iPhone 5, can only be updated, up to a point)? It's certainly not something I seem to be able to google any answers for...

 

As for the phone itself, I really don't much care if it has a fancy camera or anything else fancy. The only thing I would be getting it for, is for a functional version of OneNote, which isn't slow and has a working search function that actually displays the results, unlike the abhorrent iPhone 5, OneNote version. Other than that it would be nice if it wouldn't be too expensive and such. Something budget-tier would be really nice.

 

Kind regards,

David

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Microsoft BOB™ 10    1,016

What I do is use Telegram Messenger's "Saved Messages" functionality to post notes, images - something I need to search quickly later. It's like a notebook in chat conversation format. The search is also extremely fast.

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zhangm    1,338

IMO the search functionality of OneNote on Android (actually, the mobile app in general) is pretty much dumb as a stick. I haven't seen any issues with the search finding things, but the way it presents the results:

 

You run a search (for examine, in my notebooks I pull up 70+ instances of a string). OneNote displays a list of section titles and locations but it doesn't tell you what the context/content of the search result is - you need to tap on the search result to go view it. If the result isn't what you're looking for, then you hit back, and instead of remembering your list of results, it runs the entire search over again.

 

Meanwhile the people working on real Office programs figured all this out and display a preview thumbnail with the search term highlighted so you can see what the surrounding content is before you go click and jump to the result (in Word, at least). Not sure where the app developers were aiming with this, but it wasn't very high. :/

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David2234    0
On 1/12/2020 at 7:04 PM, Microsoft BOB™ 10 said:

What I do is use Telegram Messenger's "Saved Messages" functionality to post notes, images - something I need to search quickly later. It's like a notebook in chat conversation format. The search is also extremely fast.

Thanks for the reply. I am aware of that function, however, it unfortunately wouldn't suit the fairly random stream of searches that I often like to do...

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David2234    0
22 hours ago, zhangm said:

IMO the search functionality of OneNote on Android (actually, the mobile app in general) is pretty much dumb as a stick. I haven't seen any issues with the search finding things, but the way it presents the results:

 

You run a search (for examine, in my notebooks I pull up 70+ instances of a string). OneNote displays a list of section titles and locations but it doesn't tell you what the context/content of the search result is - you need to tap on the search result to go view it. If the result isn't what you're looking for, then you hit back, and instead of remembering your list of results, it runs the entire search over again.

 

Meanwhile the people working on real Office programs figured all this out and display a preview thumbnail with the search term highlighted so you can see what the surrounding content is before you go click and jump to the result (in Word, at least). Not sure where the app developers were aiming with this, but it wasn't very high. :/

This is very helpful to me, thanks! Would love to see how it works first person, perhaps I'll try getting in touch with someone. But just to be sure, for example if say you search for 'Anamnesis', and that term is only present in the page 'Philosophy', the first result (and supposedly the only one?) would be the page 'Philosophy', no? 

 

If yes, then do you perhaps know if it is possible to do a focused search? For example in OneNote 2010, you can do a "humans possess innate" search, and it will only show a page that has this exact text piece and nothing else. Where if it's not there exactly as in the quotes, it will return nothing 

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zhangm    1,338

I think I was wrong about the search repeating in my last reply. I opened a few older notebooks (each one is a year's worth) to test the behavior of searching through a bunch of text and sections (and pages) - maybe the phone just needed time to build a local index, but now, if I select a result in the search results list to view the page, then hit Back, the results list doesn't reload from scratch.

 

2 hours ago, David2234 said:

This is very helpful to me, thanks! Would love to see how it works first person, perhaps I'll try getting in touch with someone. But just to be sure, for example if say you search for 'Anamnesis', and that term is only present in the page 'Philosophy', the first result (and supposedly the only one?) would be the page 'Philosophy', no? 

This is correct. If you find a unique result, the title of the page will be displayed as the only hit in the results panel.

 

2 hours ago, David2234 said:

If yes, then do you perhaps know if it is possible to do a focused search? For example in OneNote 2010, you can do a "humans possess innate" search, and it will only show a page that has this exact text piece and nothing else. Where if it's not there exactly as in the quotes, it will return nothing 

It appears that this true. A search for "pipet 5 mL" (with quotes) returns a different number of results than pipet 5 mL (w/o quotes). The latter results list is every page containing ANY string in the search that is separated by a space, e.g. it will highlight 5, or pipet.

 

I think that if you tend to generate many pages with little content in each page, then the search would serve well. In cases where you have few pages with a lot of content on each, and perhaps with many instances of a single search string on each page, then there are some shortcomings in how the search results don't help you more than just highlighting the hits when you view the result (for example it gives you the # pages where a string occurs, but doesn't tell you how many times a search string appears on a given page).

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David2234    0
On 1/14/2020 at 12:49 AM, zhangm said:

I think I was wrong about the search repeating in my last reply. I opened a few older notebooks (each one is a year's worth) to test the behavior of searching through a bunch of text and sections (and pages) - maybe the phone just needed time to build a local index, but now, if I select a result in the search results list to view the page, then hit Back, the results list doesn't reload from scratch.

 

This is correct. If you find a unique result, the title of the page will be displayed as the only hit in the results panel.

 

It appears that this true. A search for "pipet 5 mL" (with quotes) returns a different number of results than pipet 5 mL (w/o quotes). The latter results list is every page containing ANY string in the search that is separated by a space, e.g. it will highlight 5, or pipet.

 

I think that if you tend to generate many pages with little content in each page, then the search would serve well. In cases where you have few pages with a lot of content on each, and perhaps with many instances of a single search string on each page, then there are some shortcomings in how the search results don't help you more than just highlighting the hits when you view the result (for example it gives you the # pages where a string occurs, but doesn't tell you how many times a search string appears on a given page).

I see. Thanks for confirming! This all sounds very well indeed, I shall be looking for an Android phone sometime in the near future then 

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