We first reviewed Penzu when it first launched over 3 years ago, and with all the changes that have been made, it may as well be an entirely different application. The changes include adding an inordinate amount of features, offering pro and basic accounts, and most recently, launching Android and iOS apps.
Penzu has also recently hit a huge milestone, reaching over 250,000 registered users on the site.
At its most basic, Penzu is a private online journal, which you can try out without having to sign up at all, but if you want to save your entries, signing up for a free account takes seconds.
Penzu takes the concept of old fashioned journaling and puts it online. With each entry you can change the font, insert photos from your computer or from Flickr and share the entry via email. Penzu also, thankfully, has an autosave feature so if anything happens while you’re writing, you won’t have to start all over again.
Unique features that Penzu brings to the table include the looking glass feature, which, if turned on, will send you excerpts from your older entries, so you can get a sense of where you were that exact same day one year ago, as well as writing prompts if you’re not sure what to write about.
Pro accounts can add tags to individual entries and customize your notepad and background. While your Penzu journal is, by default, private and can’t be viewed by anyone, you can add an additional individual password to each entry if you want.
Other Pro features include mobile access, multiple journals, spell check, adding a custom avatar, exporting your entries as PDFs, text or XML and much much more. To find out all about the the basic and pro features, and compare them, check out this list.
As you start to create entries, you can view them all in one big list:
With the newly launched iOS and Android mobile apps, users can journal from anywhere they are, right from their phones. Syncing between the mobile and web versions requires a manual sync for changes to appear, but an automated process is on its way. Features of the Penzu mobile app are limited to creating new entries or journals, adding images to your entries and syncing your account
Traditionalists might not want to exchange their physical journal and pen for an online version, but there is definitely something to be said for being able to quickly search for and access old entries at the click of a button. And with it’s default design, Penzu adds a bit of that old school feel with its leather cover.