Personal Diary (Journal) app
Now available on all your Apple devices.
Latest release: Version 3.0.6
Latest beta: Version 3.0.6
brew install wernjie/formulae/personal-diary.
Supports macOS, iPadOS, iOS, watchOS.
Rating: ★★★★★ (4.5 stars)
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“When all you want is the digital equivalent of a paper diary, this is the perfect one.” – goyyboy
“[…] Exactly what I needed […]” – (multiple reviews)
“Good and accessible with VoiceOver” – Allan.summers
Need a simple, free, and easy to use journalling app? Meet Personal Diary!
With no advertisements, limitations nor any upfront cost, Personal Diary is your simplest and best journalling tool yet. Easily access all your entries in all your devices with iCloud Sync. Write diary entries without worrying that someone will peek at what you wrote, with passcode & biometric protection. Forgot about your diary? The app can ‘summon’ you back with a friendly nudge. You can also import as many photos as you wish into your entries. As an optional addition, you can set your mood, and add weather and tags to an entry.
– Numeric passcode lock (any number of digits).
– Unlock using Touch ID or Face ID on supported devices.
– Auto-saves as you type.
– Simple & Easy to use.
– Sync data between devices via iCloud Drive.
– Ability to pick a mood and weather of the day.
– Mood & Weather can be automatically chosen.
– Import photos to your entries.
– Select a theme to suite your style.
– Dark Mode for better night use.
– iPad Multitasking Features supported, including Stage Manager.
– Full support for physical keyboards, trackpad and mice.
– VoiceOver fully supported.
– Simple Rich Text editing supported.
– Siri Shortcuts and Integration.
– Full featured Apple Watch app.
– Apple Watch system keyboard and FlickType keyboard support in the Apple Watch app.
– Fully compatible with all modern iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch models.
– Daily Notifications for writing in your diary.
– No Advertisements & absolutely FREE! :D
*Some features may not available on the Apple Watch. All features for editing and viewing all your entries such as the Timeline view are fully supported on the watch, except for previewing images.
Don’t forget to let me know what you think of Personal Diary by leaving a review on the App Store! Reviews and ratings help and let other users find this app. If you have any problems or questions, feel free to send a feedback; I might be able to help! :)
– Changelog/Version History
– Known Issues & Feature Requests
This application is provided completely for free with no additional cost. If you enjoy what I do, consider donating to help in further development of apps like these! :)
If you have any problems or want to seek further queries, please send a feedback at the application feedback page instead.
139 thoughts on “Personal Diary”
I have been using this App for years and love it’s simplicity. I would like to know how I can transfer say 5 years data off my iPad but keep it in a file on my laptop. Your help would be appreciated. I would like to keep the current year on the app but shift off the previous number of years, but I do not want to lose the information.
Jan Bates (Australia)
I absolutely love your Diary App. It’s just what I was looking for and I’m using it as my daily journal.
I’m trying to find the Customise Menu to set up how my text etc is entered. I’ve seen it on photo on App Store but can’t find it on the app. Please could you tell me how to customise the diary
(This issue was addressed through direct email. The information there is replicated here for reference.)
To customise your diary, you may simply go to the Settings page of the app and look through the available options. If you’re having any issues with the app settings, you may try restarting the app.
Hope this helps!
I use Journal on my iPhone and on my MacBook Air, and am trying to load it (to no avail!) On my MacBook Pro. I’m running 10.15.7, but the app won’t load. What am I missing?
Which version of Personal Diary are you running on all your devices?
The version is displayed on initial launch of the app at the bottom right. It is also shown when you enter Personal Diary Settings, App Support & Information, then scroll to the bottom. If you completely can’t open the app on your MacBook Pro to check, you can check the app version by using Finder, select the app and choose File > Get Info.
If you can open the app but data doesn’t sync, note that data from newer versions of Personal Diary may not be read correctly by older versions of Personal Diary.
I see no highlighting on search terms
This is unfortunately not yet supported. I’ll try and see what I can do to implement that in a future update!
Just wanted to say what a great app this is by the way. I did have a question though. I got a new iPhone 13 and transferring from the IPhone 8 Plus, unfortunately none of my diary entries previously populated on to the new phone. Please help
I’ve replied to your email when you contacted me through the app and have not received a response from you. If you still have any issues, please let me know!
Will you be adding a complication to this app for the Apple Watch at some point, for easy access?
I’ll likely be adding complications for Apple Watch in the upcoming version 3.0 update!
Thank you for this app. It’s such a wonderful app that has kept me sane. I’m so grateful that it works with voiceover and it is truly not like other apps out there it’s the best one in my opinion. I do hope to make a YouTube video about this app in the near future because I feel that more people should be aware of the beautiful simplicity that just writing a journal gives you. There’s other fancy apps out there that don’t work with voiceover but this one is just the best. I am completely grateful for this app. Thank you thank you thank you for not forgetting about the Visually Impaired people out there Who just need to ride in a journal app. This app is truly very intuitive and is not overwhelming to use. I’ve had it since 2015 and will continue to use it so please keep updating it and supported for the iOS devices. Hopefully also create this app for android or even Windows PCs for Windows 10 or now 11.
Is this App available in Android?
Unfortunately, Personal Diary is not available on Android yet – it’s currently exclusively designed for Apple platforms.
Hope this clarifies!
Bonjour et merci pour cette application !
J’ai toutefois un problème. La saisie vocale automatique Apple “fn fn” Fonctionne parfaitement mais une seule fois ! Après la première saisie, la fonction de saisie vocale ne fonctionne plus. Mais on entend bien la petite cloche d’activation ou de désactivation de la fonction. Je ne sais pas si j’ai fait une erreur de manipulation ou si je n’ai pas compris le fonctionnement du logiciel. De plus, la dernière phrase saisie avec l’outil vocal disparaît le plus souvent sans pouvoir annuler. En vous remerciant pour votre retour sur ce problème.
— [Traduit par google] —
Merci d’avoir signalé le problème, je l’examinerai et le corrigerai dans une prochaine mise à jour.
Si possible, contactez-moi également par e-mail (idéalement depuis l’application, car elle joindra les journaux pertinents qui peuvent aider à diagnostiquer le problème).
Merci et j’espère que cela vous aidera!
— [Message original] —
Thank you for reporting the issue, I’ll look into it and resolve it in a future update.
If possible, do contact me via email as well (ideally from within the app, as it’ll attach relevant logs which may help in diagnosing the issue).
Thanks, and hope this’ll help!
Hi, you asked me to check my storage as my photos wouldn’t show when I was looking back at my entries. My storage capacity is fine, I’ve used 48GB of 128GB
Sorry for the late reply, thanks for the update. Can you try opening the entry with un-downloaded images, then going back to the Timeline and wait for a few minutes, then reopen the entry? Do make sure you’re connected to stable Wi-Fi in the meantime.
PS: If possible, do try following up via email or check the application feedback form for other support channels, as I check that more often than the comments section here.
All my diary entries that I have inputted for an entire year have dissapeared
Sorry for the late reply. Can you please try to diagnose the issue via Recovery Mode (can be found in Personal Diary > Settings or the Personal Diary passcode screen) and see what it says?
Hi Wern Jie, I have been testing the Diary app for a couple of days now, and so far it seems like it’s meeting my needs but one: At home I use a Mac that runs High Sierra (can’t go higher), and the App store desktop app is not compatible. Would it be possible to make older versions available through your website?
Unfortunately, the app currently runs on Mac Catalyst, which requires macOS Catalina or later. This means that even outside of the App Store, I’m unable to provide support for older macOS versions.
Sorry about that, and hope this clarifies!
Ok, thank you for answering!
Compatible with Apple Pencil?
Sorry, the app does not have any scribbling or drawing capabilities yet, but it’s planned in future updates. When that’s released, it’ll definitely include Apple Pencil support.
I hope this answers your question! :)
I’m changing my iPhone to an android phone. Do you have a similar app for Android?
Unfortunately, I do not have a similar app for Android, sorry about that.
You may export your diary data for safekeeping via Personal Diary > Settings > Export Data.
Hope this helps!
Hi, about two years ago I asked if we could have the facility to block delete or export daily entries. You said you might think about it. Any progress that way? I would dearly love to reduce my diary down into year files for export then deletion to keep only this year active. Any chance?
Thank you for the comment.
While you’re not able to access this functionality yet, the app internally supports multiple journals (and moving older years into separate journals) since version 2.5.8, so progress has been made.
I’m currently working on perfecting it, and if possible, I’ll release this functionality in a future update by version 2.6. The option to bulk delete or export specific ranges of entries will be included as well.
Thank you very much for using Personal Diary! :)
The “Full Screen Editing” keeps resetting to “on” every-time I close the app.
I like to have it turned off, but it won’t stay off…
Also, under “Experimental Features” you have “Backup Data” but it says “Unavailable for use”
Can the entries made using my iPhone be read on my iPad and vice versa.
Yes, you can do that. The app should automatically sync content between devices by default, as long as both your iPhone and iPad are signed in to the same Apple ID, and has iCloud Drive turned on.
Hope this helps! Feel free to reply if you have any additional questions.
I am locked out and can not recover my password.
Sorry, there’s a bug which causes the recovery tool to not function properly (a crucial alert does not show up).
If you have authenticated via Touch ID, Face ID or your system password from within the app when you are trying to reset your diary passcode, the passcode should now be changed to 0000. Otherwise, there’re a few ways the recovery tool may prevent you from resetting your passcode.
Since you have already sent me an email, we’ll continue the conversation there. Thanks!
Really enjoying your app is there a way to increase the font size of what i am typing?
You can configure text size and other related options by going to Personal Diary > Timeline > Settings > Entry Text. I think you’re looking for the Full Entry Text Size option, which would change the font size in the Entry page.
Can you try changing that and see if it helps?
Love this diary.
I used iDo Pro for 6 yrs then it crashed and I was unable to reinstall it as no longer available in the App Store. I was devastated but found this diary to replace it and am delighted with it.
How do I import photos into this app??? I am confused!!
You can import photos into the app by going into an entry, then tap Images, then tap the plus icon.
Hope this helps!
Hi I have contact Apple help and they referred me to you. I have upgraded to an iPhone 11 iOS 13.1 from iPhone 7 also 13.1 my diary was working fine for two years but now it has transferred it shows the same on both phones and my iPad iso 12 with mixed up events and incorrect dates . I can’t included a screen shot also the wrong year . I hope this helps and you can help me .
Since we already an ongoing email thread, we’ll be communicating the details via email for the time being.
Sorry for the inconveniences caused by the issue.
I have upgraded to ios 13.1 and also had a new phone I phone 11 but when it transferred it has messed up as entries are all on one date eg today’s how do I get all my entries back?
Hi there. Delighted to have found this app but as I’m doing it instead of FB entry, the thing I will
Miss most about that is my memories that I can look back on from the previous years on that day. Can I search by date ?
Yes, you can search contents by date. Just type your query into the Smart Search bar, such as today’s date “30 Aug” and it’ll show you all entries written on 30th of August at the top of the Timeline. You can type other queries like “June 2018” or “31/10” as you wish.
Hope that helps!
Hey. I just downloaded your app. When I was reading the description about all the features, I was getting so excited. It’s like, finally, after looking for 10 years, I’ve found the perfect diary/journal app. For an app this good, I thought, I would be willing to pay for all this. After downloading and making a few setting adjustments, I found the first thing, I thought, was missing. The option to pick your font. This is very important to me because the font says a lot about the persons personality. Overlooking that, I went to make my first entry. That’s when I discovered I couldn’t type in landscape mode. Total deal breaker. Please tell me this is coming in a future update and I will keep my eyes out. Other than those 2 issues, you’ve got a fabulous app.
Congratulations on your app and good luck in the future!
Typing in landscape is supported, however autorotate is temporarily turned off by the app whenever you start typing (due to some other bugs that occur, I’ll fix them in another update). To type in landscape, dismiss the keyboard, rotate your phone, then relaunch the keyboard and continue typing.
I’ll consider adding font options in a future release of the app.
Also, the app is completely free, so you don’t need to pay for anything! :)
Thanks for your feedback and hope this helps!
Left you a great review on the App Store. I am learning iOS development. Clearly you have done a ton of work to get all these features into the app. And I love your approach of making it free while offering various tip amounts. Let me know if you want me to test new features. Thanks, Steve
Love, love this app!!!! Ive never written in other diarys’. 15 yrs old? Brilliant!!
I gave you money $$. I hope everyone gives you some money dep on wages etc.. who cant give 1.50 to
5 dollars?? Come on people help him!!
Can I please email you about ( or you email me) about an idea I think you might like? Its an idea no one else has done yet but its very needed.
You seem very open, polite and friendly – very important, brilliant!! Its just an idea I am not trying to profit from anything at all.
I love this app. Ive donated a big tip because I think young developers need our support. It’s simple but powerful. Everything I need to keep my thoughts and activities. I’d love to see a simple calendar built in to the app so I could dispense with separate calendars, tasks and reminders.
Thanks for the feedback and the support! I’ll see what I can do to incorporate the functionality mentioned into the app in a future release.
Cool app Wern Jie! However, for extra security, I do NOT want this backed up into the cloud. Is there an option to turn all backup off and save only locally, on the phone?
Hi Michael Smith,
You can turn off iCloud Drive Sync by going into Personal Diary > Timeline > Settings >iCloud Drive and turn that off.
Glad you liked the app, and hope this helps!
Just a quick note to say thank you for this app. It meets my needs perfectly.
I note you are only fifteen, I am in my seventies, I wish you a very happy and profitable future, I think you deserve it.
Thank you very much! If you have any issues or want to seek further queries, feel free to send a reply, preferably via email; I’d be happy to help!
I have your app on an iPad and iPhone with IOS 12. I also have a mini with IOS 9.3.5 and just installed an earlier version of your add. How can I sync it with the two devices with IOS 12? The iCloud button is on.
The app supports iOS 9 and later, so you should be able to get the latest version of the app on all three devices. If iCloud Drive is enabled on all devices, with the same iCloud account, and iCloud Drive is also enabled within Personal Diary settings, you shouldn’t need to do anything; it’ll eventually sync with each other.
Hope this helps! If you have any further queries, feel free to reply.
Hi had a problem with app I had turn of mobile data as it was using a over a gig a day some days. Thought I would let you know
This app “Personal Diary App (Journal)” that I’ve made barely uses mobile data. All data usage is forwarded to iCloud Drive instead of this app.
Are you sure you’re referring to the correct Personal Diary app?
Hi I just want to say this is excellent. I tried keeping Manuel diary but can’t read my own writing without extreme difficulty. I also have a lot of medical cal conditions and this app covers everything.thank you so much.
This is the best diary app. I really like the new function with the weather, mood and comments. You really helped calm me down today and laugh at myself. Thank you, keep up the good work.
Glad that you like the app! :)
Great app ! – couple of requests :on the timeline page can the date format be changed to day and date – eg Wed 6th June. That way I can quickly check my weekend entries. At the moment it is only June 6.
Also I would on occasions like to download my diary to pdf or text etc – is that possible ?
Many thanks for a great app
Thank you for your feedback. I’ll include these functionalities (date format & exporting) in a future update of the app.
Hope this helps! :)
Hi, good product. Where in ICloud do I find my synced diary?
You cannot access any diary data stored on iCloud without the Personal Diary app, for security purposes.
Hope this helps! :)
Thanks for your response, I do have the app. If I lose my iPad how do I access the backup in iCloud?
The backup is accessible by downloading Personal Diary on any other iOS device signed in to the same iCloud account. It will automatically be synced to that device once the app is opened.
As of now, there isn’t a method to access the data other than using an iOS device with Personal Diary installed.
I’m sorry I’m not making myself clear, l have Personal Diary installed on my iPad, it is synced to my iCloud account.
How do I access my diary data in iCloud? Where is it ?
Sorry to be so dense, not too IT savvy.
Sorry, it is not possible to manually access the data via iCloud (i.e. it is hidden), only the Personal Diary app can read that data in your iCloud account.
Hope this helps! :)
Ok I get that. So I guess if this pad crashes I reload the diary app on another device. Will my old data be reloaded?
While thinking about your app, it would be useful to be able to print diary data. ( another form of backup)
Yes, you got that right. The old data will be downloaded onto the other device with Personal Diary installed.
Thank you for your feedback. I’ll add printing functionality into a future version of the app as many users have requested. :)
Many thanks for your patience.
I’m much relieved.
I have been using your diary for some time but have just encountered a problem. The message that comes up is ‘there is an error when saving’ and it then freezes on me and I can’t get back to my entries or the time line. I am working on an iPad with OS 11.2.6. Please can you advise me what to do.
After our conversation in email, I’ll take that this issue has been resolved.
Thank you for using Personal Diary!
If you have any problems, feel free to contact me again.
I have just come across your Personal Diary which I think is fantastic . Simple and easy to use with the added bonus of NO ADVERTISEMENT.
Do you have an Android version of this app as I would like to use it on my Samsung phone?
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, as of now, there isn’t an Android version of the app as it’s still being developed.
Your email has also been replied.
Glad you liked the app! :)
Hello awesome app xd
I really like this app.
I have a question: does the app allow us to export our diary entries to the computer.
I also have a list of improvements, I would you to make please:
1) allow us to choose more emojis, can you put all the emojis
2) allows us to export and save our entries to the computer
Thanks for your feedback.
The app currently does not support exporting but it’s scheduled for release on version 2.5.
I’ll also include “Custom emoji selection” in future releases of the app.
Thank you for using the app! :)
hello I use the application Diary and since the update yesterday this application does not work well I can not open my notes it appears “downloading” but it does not show
First of all, sorry for your experience with the app.
FYI, the updating of the app to version 2.4.1 has nothing to do with the “downloading” status. It has not been changed since the feature is released on version 2.3
You may force a download by “pull down to refresh”.
Do also check your storage and see if you still have any more space.
It also downloads in the background, so when it’s ready, you’ll see all your entries appear.
Hi, before I download this App is it possible to print certain days, pages et cetera … sometimes it’s thoughts of the day which is nice to get hard copies of.
Sorry, it is not yet possible to print the entries as of version 2.4.1. This feature has been scheduled for version 2.5, once it’s ready.
Thanks for your feedback!
Hello!, I deleted all my entries from the I cloud, is there a way to get them back? Thank you!
Sorry, as of version 2.3, if you deleted entries in the app, it cannot be recovered.
thank you for responding!
Further to my previous suggestions of 15SEP17.
I seem to remember that when I set my Passcode there was no ‘Verify’ step.
It would be so easy to absent-mindedly fluff a single attempt and then be unable to log-in. Not so much a problem for a new ‘install’ and could be solved w/- a delete app and re-download. But, if changing a Passcode, this could be a distaster. I haven’t (dared) to try this step yet, but if here isn’t that verify step, then it would be a very good idea to provide it.
Hope that helps.
Thank you for your suggestion. FYI, changing your passcode does require a verify step, but I’ll also include that in the new password setup.
Nice app! Have used it to replace the usual scribbled holiday journal.
In particular, I like the synch aspect.
Have you thought of an OSX version?
Thoughts (in reverse order)
1: Could you arrange for the colour scheme to have a couple or so options.
2: Could the date /calendar icon have a time shown and be available in a pure text version. Also, maybe an option to make the icon smaller.
3: Mainly, could the journal be exportable to say, DOC, CSV, PDF, etc?
Hope this helps.
Keep up the good work!
Thanks for your suggestions. I’ll try implementing those when I can! :)
I have been using this app for almost 4 months and I like it very much, it’s simple and easy to use.
May I suggest some improvements.
It would be useful if the icon which displayes the date and the month also shows the day of the week.
Also some sort of search facility would be good so you can find a diary entry on a particular subject or key word.
Thanks for your feedback. I will try to include that in a next update.
Just so you know, you can easily search keywords by typing quotes on the search bar like so:
Or attempt to find a topic by typing:
Adam Birthday 2017
Hope this helps!
Thanks for pointing out the search facility, I don’t know how I missed it.
You’re welcome! :)
Just begun to use this and am impressed but really want to be able print is that possible ?
Sorry, but it is currently not possible to print entries. I will try to include it in a future update.
I just logged in to find all my entries have vanished. I am very upset about this. Has anyone else had this happen? Is there a way to get them back?
Sorry for your experience with the app. Can you please check if you recently changed your iCloud account settings? If so, turn Diary on in Settings > iCloud Account > iCloud, which usually fixes the problem.
Please let me know if it works, thanks.
Help please! I love this app and ha e so much recorded. Last night I changed the passcode and despite confirming, the passcode now (next day) doesn’t work.
It’s now a 9 digit number Is that too many characters? Or have i just lost everything?
Never mind last post. I downloaded the app on another device, entered my passcode and all my journal entires were there . So I deleted the app from the first device, powered on/off and redownloaded it…now the passcode works and I again have access to all my journal entries. I’m guessing I locked myself out and needed to power on/off to reset.
I read about you and your work in the Star Newspaper today. Then I downloaded your Personal Diary app. It is simple to use just like the Notes App that comes with iPhone. I think I will enjoy using this Diary app. I wish you all the best. And thank you for creating stuff that people find useful.
Is there a way you can discover your password when you have forgotten it?
Sorry, but it isn’t possible yet to recover your password if you lost it. I will include this in a future update.
Thank you and i hope it will be soon.
The version 2.2 was insalled automaticly last night. This norning imy passcode no longer works so i can’t enter any thing”
In version 2.2, you’ll need to press the done button to finish typing your password and access/enter your entries.
I am enjoying this journal because I am suffering from rare form of cancer and decided to do daily updates and pain progress from treatment.
I have tried to find a way of transferring or synching with my new phone an i6s but cannot even though this is Apple I pad.
So please can you help me
I just downloaded you app and it’s seems a great app and easy to use! Love your ideas in this app. Unfortunately I didn’t see any way to share and to backup… I’m afraid to move all my old notes to this app…
Backup it’s very important to me…
Many thanks and keep up the good work!
Thanks for your feedback. I will include support for backing up entries in the next update.
I forgot my password. Is there a way i can retrieve it? I don’t have Touch ID enabled.
Sorry, you cannot retrieve the password if you forgot it, as there is currently no way to verify that you are the one who wrote the entries.
what a lovely simple app. sometimes less is better and this works a treat !
well done and good luck.
Thank you! Good to know you like it! :)
I’ve just started useing this and am impressed with layout and NO ADDS. Thank you and I’m sure I’ll comment along the way!!! Keep it up young man!!!
Thank you! :)
I lost my iPad which means I lost my diary. Is there any way, to retrieve that information?
Sorry, you can only retrieve the data if you have an iTunes or iCloud backup of your phone.
I’m 67 years old and trying to leave a diary to my son and grandchilldren so they can read my experiences and laugh or cry with me. I found your app. And I love it, perfect for me. Am amazed how young you were to develope this, I am very proud of you!
Thank you so much,Woody
Thanks for the compliment. Good to know you love it! :)
Dear Wern I have been using the personal dairy for sometime. It is a wonderful gift . Thank you. But just read your account on Star. You are a marvelous child and very precious gift to your parents and to society. God loves you and has a purpose in your life. May God bless you
Hi! I love this app, but it won’t load anymore. It would open and let me put in my password, then it begins to load, and well it shuts off and send me straight back to the homescreen. I don’t want to reinstall the app because im afraid to lose all my entries, I really want to keep them.
Sorry for your problem. A reply has been sent to you via email.
I have the Iphone 6 and the iOS Version is 9.3.2
Please go to Settings > Privacy > Diagnosis & Usage, then:
I love the app but just one problem sometimes I could not open it just go back to the home screen and I wasn’t able to open it. And on top of that every time I made a new entry then close it out then reopened it it was gone. But overall my personal entries are kept private.
What iPhone model and iOS Version are you using?
Wouldnit be possible to have a version that can sync between mutiple devices, ie iphone and ipad? Thanks
Thanks for your feedback. OK, I will make a version of the app with the ability to sync between devices.
I like the app. But can I print my entries?
Thank you for your feedback. Sorry, you cannot print your entires as this app is designed for private use. I will try implementing this feature in the next few updates.
I really like this app!! I have used it for two days now any its better than any other diary-notebook i’ve ever used!! I love the simplicity and the features!! And only 12!! You are amazing!!
Thank you. I’m very happy to receive your feedback. I also hope the app will benefit more people out there.
I love this already and I only started today! But it is not allowing me to turn on touch ID? How can i fix this?
Are you running iOS 8 or later? If so, did you turn on Touch ID in iOS Settings? If you do, It should work.
Hello. My name is Nhung.
I used your app “Daily” for a month.
I think it very good.
Icon system very cute and very easy use it to save memories of my life.
Thank for your app.
I hope you can create many things better than app Daily in future!
Thank you for your compliment. Your feedback gives me motivation. I also hope to continue to create more apps in the future.