Is Bear losing the vision?

After using Bear 2 beta for a while now, especially on iOS, all I can say is: is Bear losing the plot? What happened to the nice, little app that simply did one job and did it well—make notes.

Now it feels like the devs are degrading the purity of that insanely powerful simplicity.

I’m not sure I care about fiddling with a menu right next to the first letter in my note heading. I just want to write and not have anything get in my way.

I don’t care about collapsible headers.

I don’t care about an entire top bar taking up screen real estate while I write or scroll.

I just want to have my screen and words. Not fancy icons here and there.

I just want to write a title and simply have it there. Not a fancy icon next to it. Not a “folding” option next to it.

I just want to write! Oh god!

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To be fair the devs tried their best to hide all the elements, open only for those who need them. And there is more improvement than any other.
If you don’t want the header to be in note while typing, you can make a feature request especially since all other platforms have them hidden while on edit.


Always useful to share a critical perspective but I couldn’t disagree more with this take. Been using Bear for at least 5 years and every single new feature in the Bear 2 beta has improved my experience with the app. The tension between adding features and maintaining a streamlined experience is real for any app, and seems like it’s the downfall of many apps. In this case, I think the developers threaded that needle brilliantly, giving what hundreds of users seem to have said they wanted while maintaining a remarkably elegant and cohesive product. It’s a fantastic achievement in my view and more than worth the wait.


Agree on this. I think bear’s iteration of feature request is hands down the best yet. I’ve been using a few note-taking apps while waiting for :bear: 2 beta to drop and had a bad experience with the UI end result following pressure from end-users with additional features. To my expectation, :bear: 2 has consistently maintained its simplicity and taken onboard feedback positively. Simple table is by far the most elegant out there and as more bugs gets squashed, the experience feels lighter and lighter. I am also hopeful that the devs will come up with a solution to the fixed title bar. Perhaps this will go away or temporarily fade away as we scroll or write —similar to what Upnote does. :man_shrugging:


No. Bear is not losing the vision. Bear is getting better.

If you don’t want change, use a text editor or emacs. If you want all the bells & whistles in your face, use a word processor. Bear provides simple markdown editing and we finally have the option to view notes without markdown (for those that want to still see it, they have the option). I use Bear daily for notes (work & personal) and, in my opinion, Bear is only getting better with Bear 2.


When you first open bear 2 and compare it with bear 1 by first sight you cannot tell which features was added. Do you mind to tell what disturbs you?

@charliesey i wanted to reply to the op :grin:


If you mean the context menu from heading icon - I do not understand your complain as bear 1 also has such a menu

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Upon reflection, I think one of the things I dislike the most about writing apps and browsing is when the title bar does not stay put, but keeps vanishing when you scroll up and then reappearing when you scroll down. That to me is extremely annoying. I like Bear’s method: make the title bar appear and stay put no matter what you do.


I think they’re doing an excellent job of adding features while not bothering those who don’t use said features.

I don’t use folding and many other things and I pretty mich don’t notice it.


If simplicity’s is what you want, maybe iA Writer is a better fit. Or give Panda a try.

Then write. What’s keeping you?

Nothing is intrusive, everything can be hidden away as it always was. I don’t care about the collapsible headers either. I simply don’t use them. I don’t begrudge them to people who like them :slightly_smiling_face:


Yeah definitely going to disagree with OP’s take here.

Bear has become a one-of-a-kind markdown editor, and I love the direction they’re going. If you’re looking for something more basic, there are plenty of other options.


I think the one thing that bothers me is when I go to adjust the headers via typing. In Bear 1, I would jump to the beginning of the header (after the icon) and delete a # to decrease the level (say from 2 to 1) or add a # to increase the level (from 2 to 3).

Now, if I’m at the beginning of the header (again, after the icon) and hit delete, the entire header markdown is wiped out. Adding a # still works to increase the level, though.

Everything else has been a massive improvement without sacrificing the ease of use and enjoyment I get from using the app.


I personally use cmd+number but can see your frustration.

The new features in bear 2 are the only reason I start to use bear. I can’t imagine using the 1.0 version anymore.


I have just recently started looking into the whole note-taking business (my notes have been all over the place before) and within the last month I believe I must have tested at least some twenty-odd apps. A lot I have dismissed after a while for reasons if missing vital functions while others after much consideration because they felt overblown, clunky, clumsy, whatever… I just couldn’t see myself using them.
Bear was different and I was re-evaluating over and over again: Bear just felt right but I had difficulties finding ways of making it work for me. Now Bear 2 ticks all the boxes (and then some) while still feeling just natural. So my answer is: No, they didn’t lose the vision, it’s still 100% spot on.