It’s been some time since we’ve shared a feature update for our iOS Notes app. Since our last post in May we’ve released six major versions of the app, each helping to further the app’s burgeoning reputation as a must-have for the on-the-go research analyst.
Introducing PDF annotations, inline tagging, support for iPhone X, file attachment improvements and much more, there’s some significant new features this Fall. Here, we explore seven of them in more detail.
PDF annotations for Notes
Something our clients have often requested is a way to annotate PDFs with comments, diagrams, and such. It’s a convenient way to quickly add insight to the kind of investment research that’s supplied from the sell-side.
To annotate in Bipsync Notes, open a note and tap on any of its PDF attachments to show the PDF viewer. Tap the notepad/pencil button in the top menu bar to turn on annotation mode, then select a tool from the sidebar. Here’s a demo of the feature in action:
Inline tagging and fields within Notes
While it’s always been possible to associate notes with a variety of tags like companies and contacts, until recently the interface that managed the tags required users to leave the note view. A few releases back we replaced this approach with a more intuitive inline tagging component that’ll look familiar to anyone who’s used our web or desktop apps:
With this change it’s now much easier to add rich metadata to your notes, particularly since version 1.25.0, released just this week, supports fields that are dependent on the tags that have been applied to the note.
So for example, when tagging a note with the “meeting” note type, you can be prompted to supply the date of the meeting, its attendees, and so forth. Fields are completely customizable per fund and can even be tailored to certain groups of users. Combining this with Bipsync’s rules and subscription features leads to a powerful way to distribute research across the organization.
Support for the iPhone X
Apple released their latest device earlier this month to much fanfare. We were quick to release version 1.24.0 during launch week which addressed a few UI issues caused by the new form factor of the device. If you’re lucky enough to have secured one, make sure the app’s updated to this version to enjoy the best possible experience.
Interface concerns aside, the iPhone X also includes some exciting new technology such as Face ID. We’re currently investigating how we can use these advances in our product to offer additional solutions to our security-conscious clients.
Extension for attaching multiple files to a Note
For some time it’s been possible to associate a file with a new note as an attachment, but until recently only one file could be attached per note. Now, thanks to a brand new app extension which can be enabled from iOS’ native share sheet, multiple files can be saved to Bipsync in one go. The files will all be attached to the same new note.
To enable the extension, scroll to the end of the app icon row within a share sheet and tap the ‘More’ button. From the menu that appears, find the ‘Save to Bipsync’ option and tap its switch to make the extension available.
View files attached to companies, contacts and more
Continuing on the files topic, we’ve also begun to expand our support for attaching files to other objects than notes – companies, contacts, and any workflow items that may have been configured, such as investment ideas.
Our users love this feature because it allows them to better contextualise their files. A model or P&L record can be associated with the appropriate company, for example. Or a meeting agenda can be associated with the contacts with whom the meeting was conducted. It’s more intuitive and efficient than first associating a file with a note, and then relating that note with a contextual object.
To view these files, navigate to a context which has attachments in Bipsync, then tap the “file clip” icon in the bottom left hand corner.
We’re currently adding support to not only view context attachments but also attach new ones, and annotate them too. So stay tuned.
Mark notes as read
Since version 118 of the Bipsync web app we’ve supported a “mark notes as read” feature, which highlights unread notes so you’re quickly able to identify new research content. Notes that you consume in the iOS app will be marked as read in our web app and desktop app. We’re working on bringing support for highlighting unread notes in the iOS app in the near future.
Note text highlighting
Many clients find the ability to highlight text within notes useful, so we’re pleased to offer that ability within the iOS app for the first time.
Highlighting text is easy: select the text you wish to highlight with the iOS text selection tool, then from the editor toolbar that appears above the keyboard tap the “A” button, then press the pencil button to apply the highlight:
Automatic preview of attachments
Many users take advantage of the file attachment feature to add files to their notes. Often they don’t supplement these notes with any text content, using them instead as ‘containers’ for their files. When the file is the main focus of the note like this, it’s sometimes convenient to be taken straight to the attachment when opening the note. If this is your preference, you can now enable this behaviour by opening iOS’ Settings app, navigating to Bipsync Notes, and turning on the “File auto-preview” setting.
That’s a thorough run-down of the app’s latest features. We have plenty more exciting things on the way so look out for future posts. As usual, please get in touch with any questions about these features, or if you have any feedback or suggestions about the platform.