When it comes to taking notes, most of the articles and studies I’ve read agree – when you actually write your notes (versus typing them directly on your laptop) you retain the information better, because you have to make on-the-fly edits for what you write down (to keep up) versus just hammering away at the keyboard for a verbatim copy. Even so, the ability to get those notes digitized (and therefore archivable and searchable) is compelling. One of the latest to bridge that divide is the Rocketbook Orbit.
Now, let’s be clear – the Rocketbook Orbit is not truly a digitized note take, like the Mobiscribe we reviewed a bit ago (link). This is a solid plastic backing (sort of like a clipboard) onto which you magnetize various pre-formatted blank sheets. Onto those, you write with a Pilot Frixion pen, and then you use the associated app on your phone to capture the snaps and put them into the digital note repository of your preference.
In many ways, this is much like what I do today, with taking normal handwritten notes and then taking snaps into my Evernote notebook. And, since I’ve got the premium subscription there, I get OCR recognition within those notes. Where the Rocketbook Orbit is hoping to shine is on it’s eco-friendly front. You see, the Pilot Frixion is an erasable pen – so after you take your snaps, you wipe these coated sheets down, and you can use them again.
That erasability probably means left-handers such as myself should look elsewhere, as the erasable inks (in my experience) tend to be a good deal more smudge-prone than the good old fast-dry gel inks (the Pilot G2 is my current go-to). That said, I do like the fact that you still get the pen-on-paper feel for things, and that you don’t have to be tied to a power source to take your notes (just to organize them later). It’s a solid middle ground in my estimation.
The Rocketbook Orbit is currently funding on Kickstarter (actually, over 30x funded) with the campaign closing out on March 27, 2020. $29 gets you the basic setup, and then pricing goes on up from there, either for multipacks or additional preformatted pages to clip on. campaign page