This year’s back-to-school update from GoodNotes comes at a time when this feature has become a must-have for every note-taking app. In this update, GoodNotes has added a collaboration feature they are calling Shared Documents. You can access it from within the app’s workspace via the share icon.
Turning on the Link Sharing option generates a link which you can then share with other GoodNotes users. When collaborating, changes take about 15 to 30 seconds to appear in everyone’s notes. Syncing is, therefore, not happening in real-time. Shared Documents removes the pains of sending and receiving back multiple copies of your notes. It also makes it easier for many people to work together on the same document. Certainly a welcome update.
You can see all the people collaborating on your notes. However, at this point, you can’t remove individuals once they have joined your collaboration space. On the homepage, the notebooks with ongoing collaboration have an indicator on them. You know right away which notebooks you are collaborating on. You can stop collaborating anytime you want, and you can turn on collaboration, for different notebooks, on the homepage.
Potential uses for students:
- Easily share and update lecture notes.
- Brainstorm and work together on research projects.
- Get your assignments marked and graded.
- Share annotated readings.
Potential uses for professionals:
- Brainstorm ideas with coworkers on one digital document
- Getting signatures from multiple people. We don’t advise signing on collaboration documents. It’s better to sign flattened PDF documents.
- Easily share meeting minutes.
- Share files with coworkers on the same project.
- Share calendars, grocery shopping lists, meal plans or travel journals with your loved ones.
- Play Tic Tac Toe or Battleships.
Shared Documents still has a few limitations which, hopefully, our developers will remove in the next coming updates.
- We haven’t control over the permissions we give the people with whom we share our notes.
- We can only collaborate on individual documents. It would be great to collaborate on folders too. That is something that can be useful for teams, especially.
- When you want to remove someone from collaborating with your group, you have to generate a new link and make sure the person you’re trying to get rid of doesn’t get it. In the future hopefully, we can remove people as easily as we add them.
This update certainly simplifies working on documents with other GoodNotes users. It means less exporting or organising and more focusing on what needs to get done. The possibilities of digital productivity keep expanding and we love it!