Microsoft today revealed three major announcements regarding its OneNote offering: a free version of OneNote for Mac, a freemium version of OneNote for Windows, and a new cloud API for first- and third-party apps to communicate directly with OneNote.

main2 Microsoft launches free OneNote for Mac, freemium OneNote for Windows, and OneNote cloud API for apps

With the launch of OneNote for Mac, Microsoft says OneNote is now available “on all the platforms you care about” and “they’re always in sync.” That includes the PC, Mac, Windows tablets, Windows Phone, iPad, iPhone, Android, and the Web.

As for the free version for Windows, it has no ads nor any limit for how long you can use it for: this is not just a trial. Everything you create in the free PC and Mac clients is synced to OneDrive, so you can access them from your phone and tablet as well.

main3 Microsoft launches free OneNote for Mac, freemium OneNote for Windows, and OneNote cloud API for apps

Microsoft says it is changing its pricing model “because we want everyone to be able to use it.” In other words, the company doesn’t want to lose users over pricing to competitors like Evernote and Google Keep.

Premium features are available to paid customers: if you have an Office 365 subscription or own Office 2013, you can purchase SharePoint support, version history, Outlook integration, and so on. If you don’t have OneNote for Windows yet, or you have an older version, you’ll want to download this new freemium option as it has all the latest bells and whistles.

blog image new Microsoft launches free OneNote for Mac, freemium OneNote for Windows, and OneNote cloud API for apps

Last but not least, Microsoft is hoping it can get developers to build apps that connect to the OneNote service via the new cloud API. Some apps area already available, including some from a few early partners, making the following possible:

  • OneNote Clipper for saving web pages to OneNote.
  • me@onenote.com for emailing notes to OneNote.
  • Office Lens for capturing documents and whiteboards with Windows Phone.
  • Sending blog and news articles to OneNote from Feedly, News360 and Weave.
  • Easy document scanning to OneNote with Brother, Doxie Go, Epson, and Neat.
  • Writing notes with pen and paper and sending them to OneNote with Livescribe.
  • Mobile document scanning to OneNote with Genius Scan and JotNot.
  • Having your physical notebooks scanned into OneNote with Mod Notebooks.
  • Connecting your world to OneNote with IFTTT.

If you’re a developer interested in OneNote, you’ll want to check out dev.onenote.com. Not only is Microsoft making OneNote free for almost anyone to use, but it is opening up the platform to everyone.

Here’s what the company hopes that will lead to:

OneNote is more than just syncing your content across all your devices. It’s now a hub for the applications and experiences you care about. By making it easy to send anything from any application to OneNote, it’s one more step towards becoming your digital memory.

In other words, Microsoft wants OneNote to be your one-stop shop for everything you need to remember and retain. Releasing free versions and an API shows the company is making a big bet on its vision.

Top Image Credit: ToddABishop