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Joplin vs. Notion

Joplin vs. Notion

Joplin is a free note-taking program offering many options. Notion is also a note-keeping program with many free options.

This is the Joplin vs. Notion article if you are looking to choose the ideal program between the two.

Quick overview

If you are looking for an advanced version of notepad, Joplin is for you. The app is offline and offers many advanced note-taking tools. If you want an online app that can sync notes across devices, you should consider Notion.

What are both


Joplin Notebook

Joplin is a free, offline, open-source tool for writing notes and creating to-do lists. It lets you create a customized hierarchy of notebooks and sub-notebooks to organize your notes and to-do lists.

The term offline here means that saving notes online and collaborating with team members is not offered for free.

Joplin also comes with a Master Password to protect sensitive information. It helps to encrypt notes when end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is enabled.


How does Notion work

Notion is a note-taking and database app that uses blocks to create pages.

It is probably the most advanced app because the right person can create amazing-looking well-linked databases to manage their company’s workflow.

Even in the free version, Notion lets us sync our notes across devices and share them with other users.

Note-taking tools

Rich text vs Markdown in Joplin
Rich text vs. Markdown in Joplin

Notion is the king of note-taking programs when it comes to editing tools. It supports over 50 block types, from simple text to complex embeds.

Both let us write notes in a rich text format and markdown format. Markdown is a simple way to format text using keyboard symbols like “#,” “**,” “>,” etc.

In Joplin, editing tools are accessible from the top toolbar. In Notion, we type “/” to access all editing tools and “@” to reference workspaces, dates, and people in our notes. Below is a list of the editing tools available in Notion and Joplin.

Superscript and Subscript
Insert/Edit Links
Inline code
Code block
Attach file
Bullet list
Number List
Checkbox list
Small, medium, and large headings
Horizontal line
Block quote
Insert Table
Insert date/time
Alarm and reminders for to-do lists.
Delete or Duplicate line
Swap Line up/down
Multiple language option
Embed a subpage
To-do list
Small, medium, and large headings
Lists with bullets, toggles, and numbers
Link to an existing page
Mention the person and the page
Date or a reminder
Inline equation
Creating a board
Add a new or existing database
Add images, audio, video, web bookmarks, code, and files
Embed various integration services
Change the text and background color
Table of contents
Block equation
Template button
Sync block
Multiple columns
Toggle heading
Tools – Joplin vs. Notion

Notion views

Another thing that makes Notion great is the number of views. Notion supports calendar, list, table, board, and timeline views.

This gives you control to organize your dashboard. For example, if you have a list with a date column, you can add the calendar view to see each list item in a calendar.


Creating Templates in Joplin
Creating Templates in Joplin

In terms of using templates, the winner is Notion. In Notion, we can access and use many built-in templates from the template store.

Notion arranges the templates in many categories, including social, planning, blogging, marketing, etc.

There are no built-in templates in Joplin. You can create your own templates and use them, but you must install the templates plugin from the plugin page.

Related: 15 Best and Free Aesthetic Notion Templates


Both programs are offered on major devices, including Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. Joplin is provided on Linux, whereas Notion can be accessed in your browser.

Both also have a web clipper extension for browsers. The extension saves text from the web pages.

The Notion web clipper extension is available for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. While the Joplin Clipper is only available on Chrome and Firefox.


Notion interface
Notion interface

We find plenty of integrations on both platforms. However, Notion takes the lead by supporting more apps than its opponent.

Furthermore, with the help of Notion API, one can create integrations. Here is a list of some integrations that Joplin and Notion support.

Microsoft OneDrive
Adobe Acrobat DC
Google Drive
Integrations – Joplin vs. Notion

The desktop app of Joplin extends beyond its standard functionality by using plugins. Plugins are hosted within the Joplin plugin’s GitHub repository.

We can search for and install plugins from within the desktop app, but we can also download the plugin files from the GitHub repository and install them manually.


Joplin is an offline app, so the question of collaboration does not fly. The premium version of Joplin supports collaboration.

Notion enables us to invite members to our workspace directly via email. We can allow them to edit, comment, see, or fully access the workspace. There is also an option to share a public URL of a page with everyone.

Note exporting

Joplin can export notes and notebooks in multiple formats: 

  • JEX
  • RAW
  • MD- Markdown
  • MD- Markdown + front matter
  • HTML
  • PDF

In Notion, you can export your file in:

  • PDF
  • HTML
  • Markdown & CSV

You can include subpages and content while exporting.

Related: Nimbus Note vs. Notion

Pricing and plans

Joplin vs Notion
Joplin and Notion Pricing and Plans

To sync files across devices and collaborate on pages, you can try Joplin Cloud. It comes in three paid plans.

The Basic plan costs 1.99€ per month in a monthly package and 1.49€ per month in a yearly package offering the following features:

  • 1 GB of total storage with 10 MB of storage per note
  • Support for publishing notebooks online and synchronization across unlimited devices
  • Web Clipper
  • Device sync

The Pro plan costs 5.99€ per month in a monthly package and 4.79€ per month in a yearly package. The pro plan provides the following additional features:

  • 10 GB of total storage with 200 MB of storage per note
  • Sharing and Collaboration

The Teams plan further extends the sharing and collaboration features costing 7.99€ per month in a monthly package and 6.69€ per month in a yearly package.

Joplin also offers a 50% discount to schools and students with a year validity. Students can renew it.

Notion’s Personal (free) plan is good enough for individuals. Here are the options available to you:

  • Unlimited number of pages
  • One member and five private guests
  • 5 MB file size
  • API Access
  • Collaboration in real-time and the sharing of links

The Plus plan charges $8 per month billed annually and $10 billed monthly, you get:

  • Unlimited file upload size
  • Expert community support is available.
  • Restore past versions of pages within 30 days
  • Invite 100 guests

The Business plan costs $15 per user/month billed yearly and $18 billed monthly, you get:

  • Collaborative Workspace
  • Getting to the admin tools
  • Access to change the advanced permissions for teams
  • Up to 250 guests

Related: 8 Best and Free Note-Taking Apps for Windows

Which one is for you?

Joplin allows creating notes and to-do lists and organizing them in a hierarchical structure of notebooks and sub-notebooks.

But when it comes to sharing and collaboration, Joplin is not the recommended one.

Notion allows us to keep track of notes, to-do lists, and project activities and manage the workflow of our work.

With the help of the extensive sharing and collaboration features, we can efficiently schedule and manage project activities.

Joplin vs. Notion: Links


This is all for the Joplin vs. Notion article. Thanks for reading it. Please share your thoughts in the comments and help others decide.

Gus Rivera

Tuesday 8th of November 2022

Also I don't pay anything to have Synching on Joplin with my Dropbox. So no need for a plan

Gus Rivera

Tuesday 8th of November 2022

In the first comparison table, you are leaving out stuff that Joplin also does, there's also inline equations for example, tables too, Quotes, links to other pages, dividers. Needs little bit more research


Thursday 25th of August 2022

I think it's a bit confusing to call Joplin offline because it doesn´t have a shared colaboration feature. You can sync across devices via dropbox or some other cloud platform


Friday 16th of September 2022

@Markus, thank you so much for your words and suggestion on adding a data safety section. I will look into it and add the section.

Also, yes, Joplin is offline, but it is super easy to enable sync if you have Dropbox installed.


Friday 16th of September 2022

@Madhsudhan, There is nothing manually in syncing Joplin via Dropbox. You just give a local Dropbox path as saving directory and thats it. And the files are encrypted! I was missing any information regarding data safety /encryption of the cloud storage in the article. I use joplin like that for years w. various windows/Linux PC/laptops and Android devices.


Thursday 25th of August 2022

@Jimocije, Yes, we can use Dropbox to sync the data, but we must do that manually. Notion automatically syncs data, which was the reason to put this difference to help users understand how both sync data.