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Fluent Sticky Notes review: A charming companion for taking notes on Windows 10

Whether it's researching for a school project or jotting down notes while watching a video, it's easier to record your thoughts when your notes are close by. Fluent Sticky Notes is a simple notes application that uses Compact Overlay mode to keep your notes above all of your other windows.

It's also an attractive note-taking application when it's used in larger windows as well.

The app is available for free on Windows 10, HoloLens, Windows 10 Mobile, and Xbox One.

Download Fluent Sticky Notes from Microsoft Store (opens in new tab)

A beautiful platform for notes

While Microsoft's Notepad has seen some love recently, it's still a legacy app that sticks out on Windows 10. Fluent Sticky Notes has a clean layout that uses Fluent Design. It fits right in with other elements of Windows 10 that have reveal effects and transparency.

What makes Fluent Sticky Notes stick out from the crowd even more is its use of Compact Overlay mode. This lets you keep your notepad above every other window that you open and resize. You can pin multiple notes to your screen as well, allowing you to multitask easier.

I'm a big fan of Fluent Design and Compact Overlay mode so having an app that combines them is a strong candidate to bump out my current note taking application.

Related: You need these Windows 10 apps if you love Fluent Design

A good start

Fluent Sticky Notes only recently came to the Microsoft Store. It's a promising start and I love some of the choices the developer made, but the app has room to grow. Many apps for taking notes have cross-device syncing which works across multiple platforms. I'd love to see Fluent Sticky Notes build this into the app. Simplenote is a great app for Fluent Sticky Notes to emulate when it comes to syncing across devices, but I much prefer the look of Fluent Sticky Notes and its use of Compact Overlay.

Overall thoughts on Fluent Sticky Notes for Windows 10

There's a lot of competition in the text editor/light note taking space and Fluent Sticky Notes has done a good job of separating itself from the competition. The clever use of Compact Overlay to have a persistent window for note taking is great for studying, especially if you jump from program to program. The app also has a clean design that makes it fit right in on Windows 10.

I'd like to see more features added over time, such as cross-device syncing, but Fluent Sticky Notes is off to a promising start.

While I am a big fan of apps being free, I wish there was a paid version of this app without ads. One of the biggest draws of this app is that it's attractive and the ads detract from that quite a bit. Developers shouldn't have to make things for free, so I'd gladly pay for an upgraded version without ads.

Pros

  • Uses Fluent Design
  • Cleverly uses Compact Overlay
  • Easy to use
  • Free

Cons

  • Doesn't sync across devices
  • Only available on Windows devices
  • Unattractive ads with no option to remove them

Download Fluent Sticky Notes from Microsoft Store (opens in new tab)

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

12 Comments
  • lol at those ads
  • I'd recommend Neon Notepad. Basically the same, just better. Uses Acrylic, compact "always on top" mode, works like a champ.
  • Actually Quick Pad is basically the same just better, it also has always on top, fluent design, and multi window support, works way better then Neon Notepad
  • Quick Pad huh? Gonna have to give that a shot. Thanks for the heads up.
  • Has some similarities to Neon Notepad but more features and no ads like Fluent Sticky Notes
  • New mobile apps.
  • Without the option to remove ads by paying for the app I'm not even gonna install this
  • I've got a noob question...how do I get my taskbar to look like the photo?? I like the large buttons but can't figure out how to get mine to look like that!
  • I think what you're referring to is the pre-Windows 7 style of grouping except with the larger Windows 7+ style taskbar. You can do this by right clicking on an empty area of the taskbar and clicking Taskbar Settings. Under "Combine taskbar buttons", select "Never".
  • This app feels very unfinished and no way to switch out of compact overlay mode
  • The shadow is kinda overwhelming...
  • Also works on Xbox. For true w10 though there is a built in app for this. But no compact overlay