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Rocketbook – the revolution of traditional notebooks

  -   19. March 2017
Source: pexels/

Rocketbook is going to combine tradition and modernity with its latest innovation – the Wave notebook. Nowadays, there are a lot of applications to capture, organize and collect notes, trains of thoughts and things that should not be forgotten at any rate. Traditional notebooks are not out of trend to capture ideas and sketches – most of us feel more comfortable to write on a sheet of paper with a real pen, rather than using laptops. Rocketbook has the mission to invent a traditional notebook as we all know that can capture our notes digitally and can be reused again.

Many people have a lot of appointments, dates, deadlines and to do´s they always should have in mind. Organizing and remembering so many thoughts can be very exhausting. In addition to that, there is a high risk of forgetting the important things. For that reason people are using online or offline agendas and paper notebooks. Regarding the online version, there is proof that people prefer using handwritten notes as information, because it stays better in mind, written by hand. Nevertheless, paper notebooks are filled quickly, organizing all the sheets can be chaotic and time-consuming and furthermore, much paper is used, which is not environmentally friendly. Rocketbook is offering a great solution for this issue.

What is Rocketbook?

The start-up company Rocketbook, which expects revenues to be around $5 million in 2017, invented the world’s first reusable notebook to solve exactly this issue. They invented a traditional notebook, which can be reused and notes can be digitally saved via an application for the smartphone. The Wave notebook contains 80 pages of acid-free, fine-grain paper. By its unique dot grid pattern it is possible to text notes or draw sketches and diagrams.

How does the reusing work?

Rocketbook partnered with the Japanese company Pilot, which offers the so called FriXion pen. The FriXion pen is inevitable for the Wave notebook. It has a thermosensitive ink, which means that it turns transparent at 60 degrees and becomes visible again at 4 degrees. These pens are not heat-resistant, which means you can put your notebook in the microwave and within 30 seconds, your handwritten notes will be erased by the heat so you can reuse the pages over and over again. The Wave notebook is specially designed to be microwave safe. When the WAVE logo turns from blue to white your notebook has been cleared and you can capture new ideas.

How can the notes be captured?

Rocketbook developed a companion app, which is free on both iOS and Android. It can scan every note and idea and captures it in a cloud database. By using your mobile device you can instantly blast your notes into the respective database. By simply scanning the QR code – which tells the Rocketbook app the page number of each scan – the Wave notebook recognizes the storage location and saves your notes in the right order. The Rocketbook app recognizes by different symbols where to store the data. Storage locations like Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive etc. can be easily used. By marking one of the symbols your notes will be scanned within seconds and sent to the desired storage location of your services. On top of it all, the app processes the images – they will be cropped and enhanced.

How does it look like?

The Wave notebook does not include any electronics – it looks like a traditional notebook with a pen. The design is kept quite simple. What is special about the pages is that they are made of a polyester mixture which feels like real paper. Also the ring file makes it look like a usual notebook by the polypropylene binding. You can choose between two different sizes. The standard size is about 8.5 in x 9.5 in and the extended size is 6 in x 8.9 in. The narrow dark border each page is marked with allows the app, by scanning the QR code, to find your page quickly.

Summing it all up, the Rocketbook is an incremental innovation to combine tradition with modernity. It combines the purpose of thinking environmentally friendly with the possibility of reusing it and the potential to organize yourself much better with help of the application for your mobile device. It is the perfect solution to keep the classic pen-paper-experience combined with digital efficiency.

Who wrote it?

Samantha Beidinger

Samantha Beidinger studies at the European Management School in Mainz.


Sophia Pan
22-03-2017 21:31

For me personally Rocketbook seriously sounds like a very practical, ecological and awesome innovation! I will definitely look into it and probably even get one for myself. I am also not an electronic-notes-taker and prefer to write my notes down on paper. But at the same time I also try to be ecological and as a result I am always not really happy with my paper-usage. I think that there are many people who prefer actual paper. But it is in fact not really good to use so much paper... So, all in all Rocketbook sounds like the perfect solution for this dilemma! One concern that just came into my mind while reading about the microwave-erasure of the notes, was how fast the writing gets invisible.. I just imagined putting my note book accidently next to a heating. Would it all be gone then too?

Van Nguyen
22-03-2017 20:16

Rocket book take this to a new level of organization. When I have started reading the article, I told myself "I need this in my life". Like everyone here, I prefer to write my notes down but the only issue I hate is the loads of paper I have at the end. The combination of traditional handwriting and modern technology makes it very attractive. I would also really like to test one of those rocketbooks myself, if it is not too expensive.

Sandra Bleher
22-03-2017 19:39

Thank you so much for sharing this innovation with us! This sounds like it was created for me, because even though tiping my notes on a computer would make it much easier to organize them and be more sustainable, I definitely prefer hand written notes, because I can remember them better later on. So this notebook will finally solve this conflict and I can't wait to try it out. Also I think not only students and universities would benefit from using it. Already starting from kindergarten until working in a company, this notebook would be handy and efficient in every stage of our lives. Not only because it reduces the use of paper and on a longterm perspective propably also costs. But as well because of its app and the cloud function, it will make organizing the notes faster and easier and you can access them from everywhere. So I can't wait to see people start using this notebook in their daily lives and I wonder how this innovation will be developed further in the future.

Isabelle Hachenberg
21-03-2017 15:43

As the others already mentioned their preference for paper notebooks, I'm totally sharing this passion. Since school times I refused to keep my notes and appointments in an online app. Instead I loved to buy paper notebooks and agendas every year. But in the age of digitalization, sooner or later I cannot avoid dealing with technology. As you mentioned in your post, Rocket Book is combining traditional hand writing and modern technology with the aspect of sustainability, which becomes more and more important these days. I asked myself how this innovation can influence the business world and our future? It could be very helpful for meetings, as by putting your notes in a cloud database it's easy to save and share them and perhaps modify with your knowledge. I'm looking forward to the development of Rocket Book and the implementation to our every day life.

Franziska Blum
21-03-2017 15:09

This innovation seems to be great! It offers benefits to people preferring to write with their own hand, but also makes electronic storage very easy. One small drawback, I could think about, would be that if the pages are full, you would need a microwave (or something hot enough) to clear it again. If you are not at home or. For example, sitting in university, that might be a problem. Nevertheless, I think that is only a small thing that does not need to occur if one always remembers to clear it regularly. I would really like to test one of those rocketbooks myself and I am curious about how this technology will develop further in the future!

Patricia Hofmann
21-03-2017 14:52

Finally a notebook which can be reused and where we don't have to waist paper. In times of climate change and clearing of more than half of the trees on our planet, I think rocket book is a great alternative to traditonal notebooks and should be taken into consideration by everyone who uses handwritten notes to remeber appointments, birtdays or and private activities. The idea that rocket book can be used together with an app for our smartphones, by scanning the notes and putting them in chronological order is a good addition to the classic notebook. The only thing which could be an issue is the price for the notebook, which is higher in comparison to other 'normal' notebooks.

Theresa Möhn
21-03-2017 14:17

What a great innovation! I think Rocketbook is the perfect balance between digitalization and tradition. In times of fast-moving trends it is not always easy to adapt yourself. Technological innovations are meant to simplify your life, but sometimes sticking to the old ways is even more easier. Like my colleagues I also write down my notes by hand instead of using a laptop. The only problem I see with handwriting is that you have loads of paper documents in the end of the day. Rocketbook even found a solution for that issue. I am absolutely positively surprised by the innovation and cannot wait to test it myself!

Mia Zerwas
21-03-2017 13:49

When reading your blogpost and the other comments the Livescribe Smartpens were an innovation that came straight to my mind! I can also relate to the problem of handtaken notes vs. notes on my laptop. What is really cool about the Livescribe Smartpens is that you can take notes, which are saved on the pen, and can be transferred to your computer. One advantage that I really like about the Smartpens is that you can also record audio frequencies, what takes making notes to a new level, because you can go through the lesson again. What is the most important aspect about the rocketbook is that the use of paper is reduced, but at the same time I have to admit that I often still prefer 'tangible' notes.

Patrick Hanke
20-03-2017 20:17

I actually heard of this from a friend of mine a couple of weeks ago. When she told me about the fact that you could re-use this notebook by putting it into the microwave, I thought she tried to make fun of me. But here we are! Very, very interesting innovation that seems to be right at its starting point. Therefore, there is probably a lot of potential for growth in the future as, once again, it is an innovation that addresses the issues of our time: sustainability and environmental protection. Having fuelled my interest in this topic I just quickly had to check out their web page. Considering the fact that you can re-use it almost indefinitely, the price point of $27 is totally reasonable. This innovation has the potential to become a real game-changer in the way that we are going to take notes in the future. After reading the article, I know what my birthday wish is this year!

Marie Schubert
20-03-2017 13:45

I completely agree with the other comments. I am not using my laptop to take notes during lectures or to write summaries for exams, I am always doing it by hand. But after some weeks I usually start to get kind of lost in all my notes. Rocketbook might finally be a good and even environment friendly solution. To my mind, this innovation is really something for the daily life use, but also might be suitable for the workplace. It just combines my needs perfectly: It still gives me the possibility to do my handwriting which is very important for me because I learn better by doing so and at the same time I can organize and store it online. This prevents me from searching through thousands of my paper sheets in folders and supports me by organizing my information accurately. Rocketbook sounds so convenient, easy and practice oriented. It perfectly combines tradition with modernity in terms of technology. It appeals to personal needs as well as to the current society and business trend of shifting many things from the offline to the online channel. To my point of view Rocketbook should engage more in making their concept and idea public because it is rather unknown at the moment, I would say. I think the company has huge potential for generating even more profit in the future.

Letizia Credico
20-03-2017 12:19

After having read the first paragraph of your article, I could really identify myself with traditional "paper notebook lovers". Honestly, I have never been a fan of electronic writing, that is why I'd rather prefer to take handwritten notes. Nonetheless, I am very convinced that the revolution of traditional notebooks could definitely be a way to start adapting to more sustainable measures when it comes to taking notes and wasting amounts of paper. It is super interesting how Rocketbook is trying to combine old-fashioned habits with the latest technological trends. But what really fascinated me was that this notebook will come with an application which will help to capture notes in a cloud database. All in all, I am very excited to test this type of innovation.

Beate Gaitzsch
20-03-2017 11:20

Wow - that was my first thought when I read your blog. I belong to the paper lovers out there and I'm really slow in adapting to electronic writing. This notebook is a really clever idea and I think I would use it. Since it fulfils the need of a more sustainable way of working and also caters to the needs of people who more like to be online, this is the perfect mix. Furthermore it could be an alternative for school children who are starting to write on laptops from an early age on already. They could practice their handwriting like usual on paper and still have the possibility to store it online. This could also be good for their health, as notebooks account for a quite high weight in their backpacks. In my point of view this notebook will definitely play an important role in the workplace of the future.

Katharina Blanckart
20-03-2017 09:31

After reading one minute into your article I could identify myself with right away. Since starting the bachelor degree I have been struggling with whether I should take handwritten notes in the lecture or simply bring my laptop and write the notes into a word document. The result of this inner battle: I have some digital documents of which I barely remember the content and a whole collection of single sheets and when it comes to exam preparation I realize I am missing some essential ones – not a working concept for me at least. But your illustration of Rocketbook sounds like these days might be over soon! In my opinion the concept is a perfect connection of old and new technology – it captures the typical character of old-fashioned note taking which a great number of people value a lot and combines with the convenience of technology to have online available without carrying your notebook with you all the time. Depending on the success I could even imagine distancing more from regular Cloud Storage providers and maybe starting an own database. Definitely a concept which seems very promising – not only for students.



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