Evernote, please be careful

by Jeff Hilimire on December 14, 2011

Evernote has been one of my favorite apps for years. I’ve written about it dozens of times on this blog. 
I’ve written about the differences between Evernote and Instapaper. It was at the top of my list of products I loved in 2010. I even had a post where I got two Evernote addicts like me to talk about why they love it.
So needless to say, I love me some Evernote.
And I loved reading the article in December issue of Inc. magazine where the Evernote boys were on the cover. GREAT story, if you haven’t read it.
But I’m getting worried. What I loved about Evernote was that they did one thing and they dominated it. Saving and storing your thoughts, notes, ideas…your memories. And by focusing on that they become one of those can’t-live-without services. 
So I was curious when I saw that they launched two new apps recently, Evernote Hello and Evernote Food. They already have several other products that I don’t use, Skitch, Clearly and Peak.
Evernote Hello describes itself as: Remembering people is hard. Evernote Hello makes it easy by creating a rich, browsable history of individuals, encounters and shared experiences.
Unfortunately, the way you do this currently is to hand your phone to someone and let them enter in their information. As far as I can tell, you can’t even go to your contact info and pull the information on someone to at least autopopulate it if you’ve already met before. But I’m surprised they didn’t at least launch this with “bump-like” technology so two Evernote users could swap contact info by simply tapping their phones together. At the moment I can’t see myself using this unless they advance the technology in several areas.
Evernote Food describes itself as: Preserve and relive memorable food experiences. From fine dining to family gatherings to a local food truck, remember every delicious moment.

If this eventually ties into other services, like Yelp, I might be more interested. But I can’t see myself taking a photo of everything I eat, or even most of the things I eat. Can’t really see the purpose.
My main question is, why is Evernote branching out from their main app where many people have done these same activities? Couldn’t you just have a “contacts” feature in the main Evernote app? And is it a good strategy to begin fragmenting your products and by doing that, are you going to be able to continue to ensure that every product you have out there is amazing?
I hope so and honestly, I wouldn’t bet against them. They’re still one of my favorite companies. 
But I’m starting to get a little worried…

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