For putting together ideas or proposals in your work, a note-taking app can be helpful. It’s especially useful if you need to present your ideas to co-workers or collaborate with them on notes. In Microsoft Office, OneNote is the app for this job.
OneNote is pre-installed in Windows 10 and included with Microsoft Office, and anyone can use it for free. In addition to Windows, OneNote is available as a web app, a Mac app, an iOS app and an Android app.
In 2018, Microsoft announced that it would discontinue the Windows desktop version of OneNote (a.k.a. OneNote 2016) and replace it with OneNote for Windows 10, the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) version. If you buy Office 2019 or Office 365 now, OneNote for Windows 10 is what you get. You can still download and install OneNote 2016, but Microsoft is no longer developing it and will stop mainstream support in 2020 and extended support in 2025. (The company says it will continue to develop and support all the other versions.)
This story refers specifically to OneNote for Windows 10, the UWP app. If you use another version of OneNote, things may look or act a little differently than we describe here. Also note that Microsoft recently updated the user interface for OneNote for Windows 10, but it doesn’t appear to have been rolled out to all users yet. If you don’t have the latest version, some interface elements might be a bit different. Regardless, the basic functionality is similar.
This guide walks you through the basics of getting up and running with OneNote for Windows 10: creating notes, adding items to them (including images, drawings, tables, audio, video, etc.), inviting collaborators, and organizing and managing your notes.