Reasons to Utilize the Journal App on Your iPhone

Key Takeaways

  • Journal is a complimentary app included with iPhones that enables users to easily record thoughts, photos, videos, and more.
  • The app underscores minimalism and simplicity, lacking the advanced features found in many paid journaling applications.
  • The exceptional feature of Journal is “Journaling Suggestions,” which intelligently suggests events and prompts for users to incorporate in their entries.


If iPhone includes one for free, why pay for a journaling application? Journal lets you document your thoughts, photos and videos, activities, and more in a simple, private diary. Give it a try, here’s why.


Why It’s a Good Idea to Start a Journal

Everyone has their motives for beginning a journal, and everyone’s journal appears different. Some use it to put their thoughts “on paper,” while others use it for simpler purposes. Document your emotions, achievements, anticipations, or even last night’s dinner.


  • The primary role of a journal is to process your thoughts. Documenting your feelings aids in contextualizing events in your life. These occurrences do not have to be very distressing, and your journal can be quite mundane yet still beneficial. Daily entries are not necessary.


  • Digital journaling expands your options. Your journal may consist of a collection of favorite photos or videos. Audio can be recorded and integrated into your entries. Such journals assist in recalling events that might otherwise be lost in your Camera Roll or forgotten in the Voice Memos app.


  • It isn’t necessary to devour your entries since the solitary act of writing can be advantageous. Regardless, there is no superior place to safeguard personal records of emotions or thoughts. Note-taking applications and word processors may seem impersonal and are often unfit for chronicling an ongoing stream of consciousness.


  • If you have difficulty remembering things, a journal may be worthwhile. If you’re battling motivation and want to hold yourself accountable, try recording the things you aspire to accomplish.
  • If you have difficulty discerning any change in your life over time, referencing past entries is a practical way to observe how you and your life have developed. If you’re already convinced to commence journaling, give Apple’s Journal app a shot.

What Is Apple’s Journal App?

Journal is a costless application that comes pre-installed on the iPhone. Although a journal can technically be maintained in any note-taking or word-processing application, Journal is intended to facilitate the ease of recording events, activities, and thoughts in an easily digestible manner.

The application places a premium on minimalism, omitting many of the more advanced features found in paid journaling applications. There are effectively two primary views: your entries and the compose screen.

Journal entry in the Apple Journal app.

The Journal app is available to iPhone users with the iOS 17.2 update. If you are unable to locate the app, try updating your iPhone under Settings > General > Software Update. If your device does not support iOS 17, you will not be able to use Journal.

Journal can be uninstalled like many of Apple’s other default applications, and it can also be downloaded again from the App Store.

Why Bother Using the Journal App?

Journal is a complimentary app, so there is little to lose by giving it a try. Similar applications like Day One and Clearful restrict certain features behind premium plans (although their basic functionality is also free). Third-party journal applications are generally much more feature-filled, which may not be suitable for everyone’s taste.

Apple’s Journal app consolidates many aspects of your life that you likely already track on your iPhone. It’s simple to import moments from your Photos library or workouts that you’ve completed from the Fitness app, but the app remains inherently simple and easy to use.

Journal is similar to the default iPhone camera app; it is designed to be as accessible as possible, at the expense of complexity. You’ll get more features and control from a third-party app, but the basic functions of a journal are right there when you tap the icon.

The app stores entries in iCloud by default, ensuring that everything is backed up (and pushed to any other iPhones that you happen to link to your Apple ID). If Apple decides to add iPad and Mac versions of Journal, this feature will be essential. For now, it only acts as a backup.

There’s a good chance that Journal is installed and ready to go right now, on your most personal device. You probably have your iPhone in your hand, pocket, or next to you 24 hours a day. It’s always there whenever creativity or the need to write strikes, but Journal is also good at prompting you by highlighting things you might want to record.

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