Evernote buys image editor Skitch

Evernote, maker of the cloud-based note-taking app of the same name, has taken over Australian firm Skitch, which produces a Mac app for editing and annotating photos.

It now plans to release a free Android version of the app, and to make the Mac version, which previously cost $20, free. The company says it plans a version for all desktop and mobile platforms.

For years, one of our most requested feature areas has been related to improved handling of images and annotation capabilities. Our users take and share millions of photos and screenshots already, but the experience isn’t as good as it could be,” says Evernote’s Andrew Sinkov.

“We debated about whether to add the improved functionality into Evernote or build a separate app to handle it. Finally, we decided to do both. Thanks to Skitch, we will.”

Evernote allows users to store notes, photos, PDFs and other information in synchronized online ‘notebooks’. Handwriting recognition in photos is an important part of the app.

The company claims more than 12.5 million users, of whom 570,000 pay for the premium service.

The new Skitch Android app allows users to edit and annotate photos, using a pencil tool to write or draw on the screen as well as other editing tools. Pictures can be shared via Facebook, Twitter, Gmail and other apps.

“In the coming months, you’ll see tighter integration between Evernote and Skitch to let you easily draw, ink, grab screenshots, annotate and share your favorite memories,” promises Sinkov.

Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. Evernote recently raised $50 million in venture capital for acquisitions, and is presumably on the lookout for others.