Evernote for Mac Lets You Annotate with Skitch, Preview Documents and Highlight

Evernote for Mac Lets You Annotate with Skitch, Preview Documents and Highlight

Posted by on 09 Jul 2013

Posted by on 09 Jul 2013

Editor’s Note: As of April 29, 2015, the Evernote features described in this blog post have changed. Please reference our comparison page for a current list of features and pricing levels.

Today, Evernote for Mac (5.2) introduces three exciting capabilities that allow you to bring focus onto the content you have in your Evernote account. Each new feature does this in its own way, and each one will make your Evernote experience more vibrant.

Get Evernote for Mac

Annotate Your Notes with Skitch!

Our Skitch app lets you visually communicate any idea quickly. It’s great for everything from giving a coworker design feedback to identifying an important section of a document to leaving an annotation in a PDF for yourself. Now, Evernote and Skitch are more closely linked, so you can mark up just about any note in your account, then save it for yourself or share it with your team.


First step: install Skitch. Next, click the new Skitch icon at the top of the note editor to bring the note into the Skitch app for annotation. Once you’ve marked it up, click the Save to Evernote button in Skitch and a new note is created in Evernote containing your annotations.

The Skitch feature works in two ways:

Annotate images
If your note contains only images, then upon clicking the Skitch button in Evernote, you’ll be able to select an image from the note that you wish to annotate. When you do, the image will open up in Skitch ready for your arrows, text, shapes, and stamps.

Annotate whole notes as PDFs
Notes that contain combinations of text, images and files, will be converted into a single PDF inside Skitch. PDF annotation is an Evernote Premium feature, so be sure to upgrade your account if you’re a Free user. Upgrade to Evernote Premium »

Document Preview

Evernote lets you store almost anything so that you have the full context around all of your ideas and memories. A note you take in a meeting can also have the presentation, a photo of the whiteboard and an audio recording of everything that was said. That way you have the whole picture for easy recall, any time.

Today, we’re making this even better with Document Preview. This new feature shows you the contents of a file right inside your note. This will work for many file types including documents, presentations, spreadsheets, and more.

To make it easy for you to drag the file into an email or other app, we included a large drag bar along the top of the file. That drag bar also includes a Save As… icon to let you put the file anywhere on your computer.

Premium Feature: Document Search
Evernote Premium users get even more out of the Document Preview feature by being able to also search within those attached documents. Upgrade to Evernote Premium.


Whether you’re working alone or collaborating with others, it’s always useful to be able to highlight important parts of your note. That’s why we added the new Highlighter as one of the text editing tools. Click the highlighter to add a bright yellow background to your text.


And More

This update is full of new ways to better highlight, display and draw attention to your notes. In addition, we took care of a bunch of bugs and issues to make your Evernote experience as great as possible. Let us know what you think.


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49 Comments RSS

  • DetektorNorge

    This is great, but for the life of me I can not understand why you can not accommodate the common request for a better search feature that highlights the searched word without making the rest of the document grey.

    • tnaseem

      Agreed. I second that motion 🙂

    • Jack Hirsch

      Definitely noted. Thanks for the feedback.

    • DanCarr

      Third that

  • Brian Thomas Henderson

    Wonderful updates. The one thing missing is an update to the program that allows those of us “Apple” people to create handwritten notes and annotate existing notes with handwritting inside the Evernote program. Gioing to third party apps within the “trunk” is a real pain in the “you know what!” This has always been the only real weakness when comparing Evernote to Onenote (MS). Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that I prefer Onenote to Evernote, I am just pointing out the one thing still very “needful”!

    • Daryl Adair

      Brian, this should be a no-brainer for Evernote. I use iAnnotate in iPad; it’s terrific for adding notes/comments/highlights to pdfs. But I would prefer to work within Evernote on my tablet and do the same things.

  • Jeffrey Lee

    is there anyway to change the highlight color?

    • Jack Hirsch

      Not right now, but thanks for the suggestion!

      • ChitraSivasankarArunagiri

        different colours would be an awesome feature. By that I can highlight on priority basis or different kind of notes. Eagerly waiting for that too.

  • Daryl Adair

    Will this be made available to Windows users? Such a critical resource.

    • Jack Hirsch

      Which feature? Either way, the answer is as soon as possible!

      • Daryl Adair

        Annotating Evernote is so important. Not just as you save (which can be done with Clearly or by using Diigo), but subsequently. This is vital for researchers like me who need to organise and comment on saved documents. Thanks for making this available to Windows users (eventually).

      • Pity Add

        These promises are a bit thin.

  • sugeeth krishnamoorthy

    Awesome.,awesome..for the past few months , en has been introducing the features demanded for long by users, 2 factor, reminders, and now this highlighter. I am sure these features will find their way into the now expected big release of Evernote for windows. Is this the result of the arrival of google keep? I don’t know, but this is a great time for Evernote premium users like me. Without a doubt , I am saving up money to buy another years premium. En premium has definitely given me more value for my money and helped improve my life in a very positive way.

  • Fowzie Smith-Tahir

    Looks like the Mac version is getting updated once again as the windows version looks outdated. Really struggle to understand the thinking behind this company.

    • Jack Hirsch

      We’re working hard on Windows too!

      • Pity Add

        Anyone but you there? I came back two years later and found the WIndows version in the same sad state I left it. Explain?

  • Yakov Hadash

    1) thank you, Evernote team, for your hard work.
    2) i wonder if “phrase searching” has come in yet. probably not…

  • Dave Kalmbach

    I see when you drag a file out, it keeps the original file name – finally. Good job with this update.

  • Jenna Weiner

    Yay! Highlighting! I’ve been looking for that for quite some time. 🙂

  • Zoso

    And till all platforms are brought parallel, the perennial question of when you the much awaited redesign of Windows PC be released ?

  • Fowzie Smith-Tahir

    Looks like my comment got censored. Unbelievable in this day and age.

    • John

      Let me guess, you were asking about reminders for windows desktop? They don’t want to hear from windows users.

  • Grandtastic


    EN for Mac got another update with (possibly) useful features.

    Big effing deal.

  • Kevin Gao

    This is awesome. I’ve only used Skitch a few times but hoping to build annotations more into my work-flow. And HIGHLIGHTING I’VE WAITED FOR WHAT FEELS LIKE DECADES 🙂


    It’s faster than the web view. You can drag-and-drop files easily. I can’t imagine only using the browser version and missing out on the Mac app functionality!

  • bmtoth

    Love the highlight feature! Will the highlight feature be added to the iPad app in a future release? As of now the highlights only appear in the Mac app…which kinda defeats the purpose if you’re working on your Mac and using your iPad during a presentation. Thanks!

    • Jack Hirsch

      Evernote for iPad has a highlighter. The icon is an exclamation point. We’re looking to standardize soon!

  • Jack Hirsch

    You can also work offline using the Mac app. When you get back onto the internet, all your changes get sycned up immediately!

  • Jack Hirsch

    We’re working hard on it!

  • Jack Hirsch

    You can either right click a document and select “View as Attachment” or, in the clipping pane of the Evernote preferences choose to view all office documents as attachments. Hope that helps!

    • tnaseem

      Nope. That’s not what I was asking. 🙂

  • Jack Hirsch

    We’re hard at work on Windows too!

    • Ross

      VERY much appreciate the reply/shout out.

      I know you can’t talk on the product cycle timeline, but can you reply briefly on the difficulties/ similarities/ differences/etc on bringing features that on the outside look simple to implement (ex: skitch pdf) but in reality provide under the hood challenges from Mac/iOS to Windows?

      A short answer here would be excellent, but I think many people would love to read something in depth on all this in a future blog post.

  • Jack Hirsch

    You may have older versions of Skitch laying around (perhaps in your trash). Try making sure you only have one version of Skitch and restarting Evernote.

  • Tim Dietrich

    Love the new Highlighter feature! It’s something that I’ve been hoping for. Awesome job with the update!

  • Alexandre Rivière

    Great job for this update !!!

    My dearest wish is an upgrade of formatting text.. I would like to have possibility of defining and choosing different formatting presets..

    I would like my title can be easily and quickly formatting by clicking on the preset beforehand defined (with front size / bold / Italic / Underlined color ect..). It would avoid me the annoying repetition of formatting my titles one by one…

  • Roger Rowles

    Good update. Also, I would love, LOVE it my ever notes were accessible by Macs Spotlight feature. I don’t have everything in evernote and it would be nice if spotlight could search my notes too. Regardless, thank you!

  • John

    It’s worth getting the Mac app. It’s apparently no longer worth getting the outdated Windows Desktop version.

  • Rupert Parry

    It would be great to have alternate views for the document preview. For example, I have a bunch of PDFs with lots of pages. I’d love to have a small preview of all the pages, or even just the first page, but putting everything inline pushes the rest of my note so far down it’s hard to get to.

  • ChitraSivasankarArunagiri

    The highlight option is super cool. But I have to select text and then click on the highlight option each time. Instead of that, can you give a highlight option that will work as long the option is ON. Hope I am clear and I have not got anything wrong right.

  • Ian

    If I want to skitch-annotate a note that has already been annotated, it seems like it makes a whole new note every time. this is kind of a hassle when i just want to go back and add a couple things, then have to manually delete previous version. also, multiple annotations create a nested pdf structure which also wouldnt work for many skitch edits.

    can you give an option for skitch annotations to not have to create a whole new pdf each time, would be really nice

  • Alex Burda

    The App also lets you use multiple windows, one for each note, have them side by side, open the related notes and yes, working off-line. And after getting used with the App, one tends to open only this app for almost everything. 🙂

  • Alex Burda

    A suggestion for improvement would be a better integration with the Notification Center in OS X Mountain Lion, so that the reminders would appear directly there for the current and the next day. That would be highly useful…

  • Pity Add

    So what are folks using in the Windows world? Should I be trying OneNote? I hate to use another MS program, but I see Evernote has made no improvements since I stopped using it a couple years ago. STILL no ability to annotate within the program? A separate program to send notes back & forth to? That is not what I call enhancing productivity. So sad. Jack Hirsch: WHAT THE HECK is going on over there? Is there a logical explanation for the lack of Windows development? You the only person working there?

  • Rick

    I’m unsure whether this is the best place in the blog to post this, but I gather that this is reviewed by Evernote staff, so here goes: Skitch seems very useful but, as a recent new premium user, what I’m finding to be a major limitation (excuse me if I have overlooked some feature) is that I can’t add my written thoughts to a web page “selection” that I’m saving to Evernote. The value of this should be apparent. Evernote’s value to me is directly proportional to its ability to keep pace with the speed of my thinking. Introducing even a slight lag by adding thoughts later, really limits my capability to use Evernote specifically as a capture tool in my writing. I don’t want to Command-Tab to Evernote to further emend/amend the information just captured. The more that this capture/annotation process can be streamlined, simplified, the more effectively, rapidly it will enable me to use Evernote as an adjunct A) to gathering information I discover, B) capturing the ideas that spontaneously, rapidly emerge from such discovery — C) all to support the writing that I want to do. I’d sure appreciate hearing opinions of others who have similar objectives and concerns.

    • Taylor Pipes

      Thanks for the feedback.

  • Patrice

    I annoted a document o n my Mac. Now looking for the annotations on that same document on iPad app and I can’t find them. Annotations don’t synch? What ?

  • Ben Holden

    first, I’m confused about the annotate with skitch button since it always brings up some arbitrary number of the total images I have in a particular document (never the one I want to edit, for example). So, I figured what the heck, I’ll just do via annotating the entire document. Using this method, am I correct in assuming this is going to force there to be an additional document produced (note) which is now going to be a PDF inside the Evernote folder??? Can you not simply annotate the note right there you’re working on and be done with it? Must there be a PDF produced leaving you with two versions of this same document?