Upgrade your mobile reporting toolkit

Journalists need a go-to mobile toolkit to help them work and publish in the field. This post is the first in a series exploring mobile reporting apps for iPhone and Android.

Writing, file transfer and storage are some of the most basic needs of a mobile journalist. Apps for scanning and digitizing text are also a must have for working with and publishing documents.


I use Evernote to write stories, take notes during interviews, dictate short stories or photo captions, store my expense receipts and file business cards. I also clip web pages and store PDFs on Evernote.

The beauty of Evernote is that its a cloud-based app that syncs data from your computer, smart phone, tablet and smart watch. Designed as a note taking app, Evernote allows you to write text notes, record audio, use voice dictation to add text notes, take photos and organize it all in a series of notebooks.

The Basic version of Evernote is free and gives you plenty of storage for notes, stories, photos, audio notes, web clipping and PDFs. Upgrading to Premium gives you more monthly space, the ability to annotate PDFs and to scan and store business cards.


Dropbox is a popular cloud storage app that gives you 5 GB of free storage space.

Dropbox allows you to view files on the go, download files for offline viewing, sync photos and videos and share links to your files in your personal Dropbox. Dropbox is connected to many of the mobile multimedia apps, allowing you to efficiently archive and handoff files.


Google Drive gives users 15 GB of free storage. You can store audio, video, text, spreadsheets and PDFs. On iOS devices you need to download additional apps to create documents and spreadsheets, Google Docs and Google Sheets. Both are free. Drive is connected to multimedia apps on iOS, making archiving and file transfers fast and efficient.


Genius Scan+ ($2.99) is a scanning app for creating PDFs from documents and storing them on Evernote, Dropbox and other cloud services. I use Genius Scan+ to make quick scans of documents for online posting or downloads as PDFs. I also use it to scan my receipts and keep track of expenses in Evernote.


Capture printed text from documents, court files, receipts, books and more with Abbyy Text Grabber + Translator ($7.99). Scans are saved as PDFs that can be stored in Evernote or emailed. Printed text can be scanned, digitized, cut, copied and edited.  Text Grabber recognizes 60 different languages and translate between 40 languages. Abby is a must have app for journalists who work with documents.


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