It’s getting cold, maybe even snowing outside but you’re there on your cozy, sweet bed, whilst reading your favorite book on your iPhone or your iPad.
Covered by your warm, fuzzy blanket, like you’re some kind of a human tortilla, you sip on a hot chocolate, whilst you take notes and highlights like you’re studying for the finals.
After collecting all your notes and highlights on iBooks, you find that you instead want to save them so that you can look back on it later..
But hold on …
You ask yourself, “How can I save my notes and highlights from iBooks?”
Not to worry, as I have curated this guide for you with a quick step by steps on how to save notes and highlights from iBooks and it’ll only take less than by the time you finish your hot chocolate.
How to Save Notes and Highlights from iBooks: 7 Ways
1. Email to Self.
- First things first, open your iBooks and then go ahead choose which book that you want to save notes and highlights from.
- Click on the Notes button .
- Now go to the Notes tab
- Click the box with the arrow button facing to the top which is located on the top right-hand corner.
- Select Edit Notes
- Now you can choose which notes or highlights that you want to save from your book. If you want to choose all, then click on Select All
- Finally, Click on Share and then choose Mail.
2. Add to Your Notes
You can also save notes and highlights from iBooks by saving it onto Notes or any other note-taking app.
The steps are exactly the same as above (Email to yourself) except instead of choosing Mail you choose to Add to Notes.
If you are using an app like Evernote to take your notes, you can also save it onto that.
3. Use Digested (For Mac only)
It’s called Digested, and it does exactly what it says it does.
Digested is a free Mac app which will suck all your notes and highlights out of your iBooks and package them up in a nicely-formatted PDF, or direct it onto your Evernote.
Pretty cool huh?
Here’s how you get started:
- You can start off by downloading Digested onto your Mac.
- Plug in either your iPhone or iPad.
- Done? Great, you’re almost there! You’ll now see a window listing all of your books which contain all your notes and highlights. By default, they are all selected, but if you want to choose one by one then you can do that too.
- Once you are done, you have two ways you can export all your notes and highlights:
- Evernote export
Basically, if you want to export all your notes and highlights to Evernote, this is what it does. You’ll find that if you chose the Evernote export that it adds each note as a note to the notebook of your choice. You get the highlighted text along with any notes you may have added.
The downside to this export is that you don’t get the title of the book the notes came from, which makes it absolutely crap.
- PDF export (recommended)
PDF export is much better, and as you can store and index PDFs inside Evernote (with a Pro account at least) this might be the best bet for now.
What you will get is a single PDF with section headers for each book (with the book’s title) and the snippets underneath.
4. Store the Books onto your Computer
If you want to look back on your notes and highlights saved with the book that you’ve read, you can back it up on iTunes and then in the future, you can always sync it back onto your iPhone or iPad.
The only bummer about iTunes is that you can’t really open your book and read it in your iTunes.
So you only have two ways to go about it from there.
You would either have to be a Mac user and download the iBooks app for your Mac or transfer back your book together with all your notes and highlights that are saved on your iTunes back onto your iOS device and read on that.
Here’s a guide from Apple themselves on how you can save it onto your iTunes so that you can keep your notes and highlights safe and get them whenever you need to.
5. Print Your Notes & Highlights.
There are three ways you may go about this:
- Print your notes directly from iBooks (only PDF files)
- Save your notes and highlights onto your Notes and then Print them
- Take screenshots of your notes and highlights (your ePub Books) and then Print from Photos
I’ll show you each of the ways below:
Print your notes from iBooks (only PDF files)
- Go on to your iBooks and open the PDF file that you want to save.
- Click the box with the arrow button facing to the top.
- Select Print
- Now you can find a printer to print your PDf file with your notes or highlights from. After you’ve done that, Click on Print again and you’re done!
Save your Notes and Highlights to your Notes and then Print them
- Go onto your iBooks, Choose a book that you want to save your notes and highlights and then Click on this dotted list-type button
- Head over to the Notes tab, and click the box with the arrow button facing to the top. Select Edit Notes
- Now Select which notes and highlights that you would want to save.
- After you’ve chosen which notes and highlights that you would want to save, click on Share, then Add to Notes (or any other note-taking app that you would prefer).
- Next a new window will pop up showing you whether if you want to add anything to your notes and highlights that you are trying to save and whether if you want to Choose Note (which means you have the option to save your notes and highlights onto another note which you’ve already created before or if you rather want to create a New Note in a New folder. Once you’re done, click Save.
- Done? Great! You just saved your notes and highlights onto your notes. Now all you have to do is go onto your Notes app, and then find your note and then print it.
- Finally, click on the box with the arrow again and then select Print and there you have it!
Take screenshots of your notes and highlights (your ePub Books) and then Print from Photos
- Head over to your iBooks and take a picture of your notes and highlights that you would want to save.
- Next, go on to your Photos app and find the photo that you have just taken.
- Once you have done that, click on the box with the arrow button which you can see at the bottom to your far left.
- Now you will be presented with a bunch of options on how you want to use this picture that you have just taken.
- You’re doing great! Now swipe to the right and you’ll see the option to Print.
- From here on out, I am pretty sure you know what to do. 🙂
6. Store your Books onto iCloud
You can also store your books on iCloud if you wish and then use it to access your notes and highlights from iBooks on any device.
Here’s a guide from Apple themselves on how you can store your books (with your notes and highlights) onto your iCloud.
Another thing that I wanted to tell you is (and this is pretty important), be careful when you’re storing your books or basically whatever you may have onto your iCloud.
Apple is really bad at prioritizing your data (that includes your books, photos, contacts, messages, notes, etc. literally everything, you name it) above their simplicity which sometimes can end up as a muddle altogether.
Honestly speaking, if you’re not careful you will find that your hard-earned books, notes, and highlights that you’ve collected get vanished in just a second from your library.
You’ll know exactly why I am saying this as you read on …
7. Delete and Download Back your Book
So I suppose you were so curious to find out what I had exactly planned to say to you huh?
Well, truth is, I’ve actually lost all my books before and it ain’t that long ago. (Does yesterday count as “ain’t that long ago” ? haha)
This happened when I accidentally pressed the opt-out of iCloud Drive option in my settings on my iPhone whilst my books were still uploading onto my iCloud, which is something you shouldn’t do.
Despite all of that, I did learn one thing:
Since I had my book backed up in my email, what I did was I just copied the book again back onto my iBooks. And guess what had happened next? I actually got my notes and highlights back!
Maybe Apple stores your notes and highlights somewhere where you will never know or find out but if worse comes to worst if anything does happen to your books, keep another copy of your book somewhere in a pen drive, your computer or your email then all you have to do is just Send it via email onto your iPhone or iPad and then Copy onto your iBooks.
thanks. it helped me a lot.
Is exporting via Notes still supposed to work? When I open the share menue now (after selecting all highlights), then the only option there is Mail. Via the More…button I’m not able to choose anything else – absolutely nothing shows up. No Copy, no other App, …
Is this a general iOS update “problem” or did I just screw up my settings and can’t repair it or even find the error?
Thanks for help!
Any response to this question.
It only works for notes export if you select a single highlight. If multiple are selected, email is your only option.
This works fine, for highlights. But if you try to export a note with the highlight, the note isn’t included. Is there a way to save both the highlight and your own notes together so context isn’t lost? Screenshots is the only way I’ve found, but there’s got to be something better. This used to work when I tried it a couple years ago.
The only options iBooks gives me are select, or deselect all, or delete, even if I choose only one note/highlight. I will not be using iBooks as it is clearly designed to frustrate reading and note taking.