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Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooks

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Erin L

Erin L

Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooksI recently got some Rocketbook notebooks and I have to admit I was a bit baffled about why I’d want to use a reusable notebook. So before I could review the Rocketbook Smart Notepad and Everyday Planner I had to wrap my head around the why…
Rocketbook Notebooks
5

Summary

I think I’m becoming a convert for the Rocketbook way of life. The reusable paper means no waste, and the easy app and digitization means you never have to worry about losing your notes. The biggest downside is both remembering and taking the time to scan each page when you’re done with it.

Pros

  • Reusable, washable concept works great
  • Pages feel good to write on
  • FriXion pen feels like a regular pen
  • Pages come very clean; no staining
  • Huge variety of notebooks, pages, sizes
  • Everyday Planner has a lot of neat organization options
  • Easy to use app, flawless digitization

Cons

  • Remembering to scan each page
  • I wonder how long the pen/ink lasts?

Rocketbook Smart Notepad and Everyday Planner review

We’re in an era where many of us are trying to minimize our impact on not just our environment, and nature, but on the future. We do small things like recycle our cans, dial back our water use, and maybe walk somewhere instead of driving. At the same time, it can be difficult to undo years of habit. For me, that habit is obsessive note taking and list making. Anyone else out there go through dozens of Post-its, pages and notebooks each year? Or is writing things down on paper how you and I stay organized — it helps us think things through, to see them on paper. Do we have to give this up? Apparently not.

What is Rocketbook and why would you want it?

Rocketbook is a reusable writing system that lets you use your own handwriting on a paper-like sheet, then upload and archive, file, and organize your notes in the cloud. When you’re out of paper you just literally wipe the notebook clean and use it over again. It’s kind of a strange and foreign concept, so in this review, I’ll look at exactly how it works, and if the books live up to their promises.

Watch my hands-on video review

Okay… so what is Rocketbook? Rocketbook is, in a nutshell a notebook that’s fully reusable and it also uploads your every scribble to the cloud for storage, if you want.

Special FriXion Pen works on other paper too: washable ink

Rocketbook makes a variety of different note taking, organization, and productivity products. These are from its Orbit line, which means you’ll write on them with the ink-loaded Pilot FriXion pen, which will also write on regular paper too. With Orbit, the ink will wipe off using water and a soft cloth, which is included with your notebooks. Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooksWorth noting, you can use the FriXion pen on other paper but you absolutely can’t use other pens on the Rocketbook paper… that is, if you ever want to clean them. These notebooks are also not microwavable, though Rocketbook does also make the Wavo line that does clean via microwaving. In my review, I got the Orbit Smart Notebook, a 6×9-inch flip-style notepad with an available hard clipboard style back. The note pages tack to the board magnetically. This note concept is also available in a larger 8.5x 11 inch size too. I also got the Everyday Planner, a spiral-bound 6 by 9-inch book with a bunch of different pages inside including a calendar, monthly planner, weekly view, checklists and extra pages with different lines and dots.

How does a Rocketbook work?

Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooksIn essence, Rocketbook notebooks work just like regular paper notebooks. You’ll use a pen to write on the pages, create lists, cross out mistakes, add notes, plot out upcoming to-dos, create a quick notepad for jotting thoughts… whatever you would normally do with post it, notepads, or notebooks. At any point, you can simply scan a page, and rocket book will save your notes wherever you tell it.

Digital notes can’t be lost

Now this alone may be worth its weight in gold. I recently faced an issue that would have been solved instantly if I’d used a Rocketbooks notebook before… I had written down some notes and details on pricing for a service last fall. Just last week, I urgently needed that detail again, but last year’s notebook was nowhere to be found. If I had a Rocketbook last fall, I could have simply searched my MacBook for that file and located the notebook page.

Your handwriting is searchable online

Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooks

The “paper” is surprisingly tactile.

One of the things that blew me away about this concept, is that all of the scans are searchable. Though it maintains your notes in your own handwriting, you can use the rocket book app to search for keywords or terms. I will say, your results vary depending on your penmanship, but most of the time I was able to locate the pages I was seeking.

Store notes anywhere

Rocket book will store your notes almost anywhere. You can save to google drive, Evernote, Dropbox, OneNote, OneDrive, Trello, Slack, iCloud, and you can also email or text your notes too. You’ll choose an initial location during set up, but you can change the destination anytime. You can also create folders at your destinations to organize specific pages or lists.

File types

Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooksYou can group your scans into one combined PDF if you want to, or make them individual files. You can also have them save as either PDF or JPEG files.

What is Rocketbook paper really like?

You’re probably wondering What the paper is really like? The paper isn’t really paper at all; it’s plastic. Initially, I wasn’t sure I would be converted to the Rocketbook concept. The pages are definitely plasticky, but they are extremely thin. They feel much smoother than regular paper, but much to my surprise, the FriXion pen writes on it very easily, and it definitely mimics the look, feel, and scratch of real paper.

Using Rocketbook: what’s it like?

When you’d like to upload your note page to your file destination, it’s actually quite simple. Open the rocket book app, and tap to add a new page. The app will open your camera, and then by placing the page in the middle of the window, it will automatically take a copy. And this is no awkward photograph of the page, like you could do yourself with a piece of paper and your camera on your smart phone. The copy maintains the integrity of the pen marks on paper quite exactly. Making it look like the real deal versus a half-assed copy. Preview your scan, then go back to the previous screen. Tap Next at the bottom and the app will save you file. You’ll get the option to name your notes if you want; if not the Rocketbook app will assign it a file name. Then you can access it either inside the Rocketbook app of via your destination folder.

Pages can be stitched together

Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooksIf you’re using two pages, for example a Calendar or monthly planner spread across two sides of the notebook, it’s possible to scan them in as one page. To do this you simply need to mark one of the hidden symbols at the bottom of the page and make sure the same one is chosen for each side. When you scan the pages into the app, and save them, they’re one united page. This worked extremely well and actually blew my mind a little bit about how smart and versatile this is. I was using my rocket book every day planner to layout plans for a trip to Spain in 2023. Using the notebook made it super easy to move things around, make adjustments.

Rocketbook uses Smart Tags

At the bottom of each page is a lineup of symbols. Marking a line or an X on one of them will indicate it’s related to others with the same symbol marked. This way you can automatically save some notes to special folders, for different projects, clients or files.

And a Smart Title Bar

There’s a small area at the top of the notebook pages, which is called the Smart Title Bar. This title bar will automatically generate what you write there as the file name, meaning no file renaming is necessary.
Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner: washable, reusable notebooks

Ink wipes away with water.

And how well does simple water clean the pages? Perfectly in my opinion. There was no ink residue left, even when I let the in stay on the page for weeks.

Overall Rocketbook Review: Rocketbook Smart Notepad & Everyday Planner

Is Rocketbook worth it? Overall, I think I’m becoming a convert for the Rocketbook way of life. The reusable paper means no waste, and the easy app and digitization means you never have to worry about losing your notes. The biggest downside is both remembering and taking the time to scan each page when you’re done with it. But overall, I’m really liking the Rocketbook experience and I think you will too. The Everyday Planner sells for about $38USD while the Orbit Notepad Kit sells for about $40USD. You can get them from Rocketbook’s website or off Amazon!

Rocketbook Multi Subject Notebook Giveaway Winner

Congratulations to Rose S of North Carolina who won our contest. *The contest is now closed*To enter our giveaway of 1 Rocketbook Multi Subject Notebook, simply post a comment in the comments section BELOW. The Fine Print: There is one (1) Rocketbook Multi Subject Notebook available to be won. We’ll pick one winner at random from among all website entries/comments. The contest is open to residents of the continental United States, and Canada until 11:59pm MT Tuesday August 30, 2022. Only 1 entry per person, per day please; excess entries will be discarded. Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received. Not valid in Quebec. The winner will receive 1 prize. Prize will be shipped direct to the winner by Rocketbook so winner is required to provide a mailing address. TechGadgetsCanada.com bears no responsibility for prizes not delivered, delayed or misdirected, or not claimed after 30 days, or misdirected due to incorrect address being provided. This prize has no cash value. We’ll get in touch with the winner via the email address supplied on entry or via website comment registration. Winner must respond to an email naming them as the winner within 48 hours. Non-response within 48 hours means we’ll redraw under same  48 hour timeframe until I get a winner’s response. Winner’s name(s) will be posted to this web page after the draw. If for any reason the internet portion of the Contest is not capable of running as planned, including infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud, technical failures or any other causes beyond the control of this website which corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of this Contest, TechGadgetsCanada.com reserves the right at its sole discretion to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process, and to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Contest. Prize may not be exactly as show in accompanying photographs. By entering this contest you agree you have read and accept the rules and are to abide by them. **A note about Affiliate Links: TechGadgetsCanada is supported by our readers. Occasionally I will include affiliate links in my reviews. I do this partly for convenience of the reader (since I’ll almost always include a link to the company website or similar anyway) in case you want to read more or purchase, but I also may get a small commission from the click, which helps me keep the blog running. If you choose to use this link I thank you greatly for supporting the blog. There’s no obligation or cost to you for using these links.
Erin L

Erin L

I'm a journalist, tech blogger, writer, TV producer, silversmith& jewelry designer, foodie and world traveler. I blog, write for publications, and supply freelance writing services to Calgary, and the world.

9 Comments

  1. Joel on May 5, 2023 at 11:01 am

    Is anyone having some premature failure with the pens? I love most aspects but the pen seems to run out quickly with the notepad. Any thoughts?

    • Erin L on July 11, 2023 at 5:30 pm

      ohh, interesting! Not me..

  2. Matt on August 27, 2022 at 6:04 pm

    What a great timesaver for the daily to dos and note writing. Also for all the ‘Code Blues’ around the house 😃

  3. Jo C on August 26, 2022 at 8:39 am

    This is so cool, love the review. I love making to do lists and the fact that it is reusable is a game changer for me!

  4. Pauline on August 26, 2022 at 6:33 am

    sounds like a great product,it wuld be good to use

  5. Zainab on August 23, 2022 at 8:37 am

    Great Review!

  6. Warren Monteiro on August 22, 2022 at 2:57 pm

    very cool – reminds me of the Evernote tools you reviewed awhile back!

  7. Rose Evans-Storms on May 12, 2022 at 9:37 pm

    Best product review I have ever seen (Rocketbook)! Some youtube reviews are just excruciating. Your’s was succinct and just fantastic! Too bad nobody has answered my question thus far – I am left-handed and therefore drag my hand across my writing. Does the Rocketbook smudge when doing this???? Uggh.

    • Erin L on May 16, 2022 at 3:18 pm

      Rose!! Thanks so much for the kind words. I have giant hands myself and I didn’t notice any smudging… the ink seems to dry really fast. 🙂

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