Application Review: Byword


iOS features a basic app, offering basic functionality, that had a matte yellow icon. We all know this app, and it has changed very little over the past half-decade. With 5 years worth of upgrades, and only seeing an additions of font selection and searching capabilities, it becomes well apparent that Notes will not become the notes app we all dream of. Byword is a competitor against the notes app offering a stress-free writing environment that is simple to the touch and offering a wide array of features…


Byword can really make writing a simplicity for just about anyone. Whether it be the average programmer, or even the average writer. Formatting is done on the go in a non-intrusive sort of way, but still allows you to do your formatting with a number of features like lists, both bulleted and numbers, along with headings. For the coders, the smart bracket button will change to allow you to complete the bracket you’re working with. This can be a problem when you have multiple brackets in one though; although it does make closing them much quicker.

Byword offers plenty of features regarding formatting that make formatting quicker.

One feature I do want to see would be the inclusion of alignment. Although it can do alignment within tables, it can’t do basic alignment for headers and paragraphs. Currently, MultiMarkdown Language offers no solutions to this that I am aware of, nor is there any in its documentation.

Byword offers many options for the user to choose to make editing as painless as possible.

Outside the included features of formatting your writing in a quick concise manner is also the ability to do a few options including changing the font type you have along with autocorrection and other fun switches. On top of that, Byword also offers users the ability to sync their creations to the web through either iCloud or DropBox. The offerings far surpass those of the stock notes app.

Byword is web-integrated allowing syncing to two large services: iCloud and DropBox.

Features: ★★★★½


The menus in Byword are really straight forward. Searching tools are included straight in the app along with sorting tools which become really useful. Users have options to sort either by date or name.

The menus are simple and straight forward.

The main graphical feature of Byword, however, isn’t the menu, it’s the editor. The Editor is meant to be a distraction free writing environment to only give you formatting options when you want them. The formatting bar quickly subsides into a word counter until you need it. Quick swipes allow users to quickly access the basic formatting tools. Formatting can also be done without using the built-in formatting bar for on-the-fly editing.

The editor is simple and leaves nothing between you and what you write.

Graphics: ★★★★★


Byword is leap-years ahead of the stock notes app. Not only does it allow writers to choose what font they can use, they also offer a multitude of other features that just plain outdoes that of the stock notes app. The editor offers basic formatting for the novice user, but its power lies in the MultiMarkup Language that is really for the power-user. This is where the power-user will stay connected with Byword and entirely trash Notes. The fast, on-the-go editing becomes much more productive than the stock Notes app ever will be.

Reuse: ★★★★★


Byword enters an already populated set of apps with a text editing appearance. Its features far surpass many of the other editors, but its price does as well. At five dollars, it really has to compete with many apps that are a fifth of that price. Although worth the price, it doesn’t create a better deal over many other dollar apps that have similar functionality.

Value: ★★★★

Final Thoughts

Byword still stands as one of the better text editing apps out there, but its price can swarm away many who don’t know of its powers. Being able to dig and go into a more productive formatting platform does this app wonders. Being able to also attract more novice users plays even larger rolls. Byword is definitely a stock Notes killer; there’s no doubting that, but its price is also killer.

Overall Score

† All prices are in US currency.
This review was written by the Review Team. Cumulative scores are rounded to the nearest half or full star.
All accessories, applications, themes, tweaks, or other products were purchased by iFans at their respective prices unless stated otherwise.
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