Usability with mobile and sync

I am an avid user of Obsidian for almost two years now, and I just simply love everything about the Desktop Application. It is perfect. But, as you guessed, I am not able to love the mobile version - or sync - as much. Why is that? Well, I don’t see how I should be able to jot down a quick note on mobile. The whole thing just feels clunky and the interface feels filigrane but also kind of swoogly. With sometimes loading times exceeding 10 seconds. And with sync I had some horrible happenings, which deleted half of my files.

My main point here is that I would like to ask you if there has been any concepts or ideas floating around, regarding mobile usability and working with sync. Because I surely am would be willing to pay for sync and use Obsidian properly on my phone. (Sorry to be an a*hole here, but notion…)

I would have a proposal of an idea, which involves just sending a table of all of your notes (kind of one json-file?), basically just the metadata. And then fetch notes on demand. This could also work not necessarily only over network. It could also work in a sense, that you fetch all the data over sync like normal - but then have a ressource-limited version, which only loads one note into memory when used, and otherwise just referring to the table of notes. (I don’t know about the inner workings of Obsidian, so I apologize if this sounds stupid).

If somebody of the team is willing/keen on throwing ideas around, I am up.


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Mobile quick capture is on the Obsidian roadmap.

The team takes sync bugs quite seriously from what I’ve seen. This makes sense given that this is likely their biggest revenue source.

I continue to sympathize with frustrations on mobile, but things are much better than they were in the early days.


I share your frustrations, and am also a user of Sync. It just doesn’t work trivially from a UX standpoint. So my biggest frustration with mobile is indeed the wait time to open app (iPhone 14 Pro - 5000 notes - takes +/- 3-5 seconds - minimum of plug-ins) but even more so is the file-by-file sync that happens when the app is then open.

Why does the sync have to happen file-by-file (instead of batch sync’n (and conflict resolution) everything from the server to the device and vice versa)?

The focus seems to be on quick capture. I’m not sure if accessing the notes quickly on your mobile device is within the scope of that feature.

Thanks for your replies, y’all!

I also checked the roadmap now and am quite satisfied with what I read there. It seems to me that a quick capture feature is also what solves the problem on mobile to some extent (jotting down a quick note).

And I am also aknowledging the fact, that the team works hard on sync and that these hickups I talked about are not a recent phenomenon.

For now I am using Nextcloud on my own server to sync my notes, and Nextcloud notes to directly sync that into my vault. I will post, how exactly to do it, in show-and-tell.