Our choice of the best tablets for taking notes and writing.
We don’t even notice how often we write something down in our everyday life: be it at work, during studies or simply in the street. If earlier we needed a pen and a sheet of paper to take notes, nowadays we can fully substitute both tools with a note taking tablet.
Such devices are rather compact to fit in a regular bag or even a pocket and offer all the necessary functions, so that you can quickly put things down.
Besides, modern manufacturers of note taking tablets include a stylus in the kit, which eliminates the necessity to type words using a keyboard.
Have a look at the list of the best note taking tablets, which can also cover your drawing and design needs. There are high-grade options with a big price tag and more budget-friendly variants, so you are bound to find something to satisfy both your requirements and financial capabilities.
Weight: 471 g | Screen size: 11-inch | Resolution: 2732 x 2048 pixels | CPU: A12Z Bionic | Storage: 128 GB | Rear camera: 12MP Wide and 10MP Ultra Wide | Front camera: 7MP
⊕ Liquid Retina display
⊕ Quick Chipset
⊕ Supports trackpad
⊕ Face ID authentication
⊖ Too high price equal to the cost of a pro-level laptop
⊖ Stylus (iPencil) isn’t included in the kit
This is the latest and super-powerful tablet for note taking designed by Apple Inc., which has proven to have all the necessary instruments and features to satisfy the pickiest user. Paired with iPencil it becomes a state-of-the-art tablet for drawing and design. The device has an advanced edge-to-edge Liquid Retina LCD display with an A12X Bionic chip, which can compete with and even surpass high-end Intel laptops.
Such remarkable specs make it the best tablet for taking notes with a stylus currently available on the market. iPad Pro pleases users with speedy performance and amazing battery life. The device also boasts improved cameras and allows users to install AR apps of a new class, meaning it is far ahead of Surface Pro.
Weight: 770 g | Screen size: 12.3 -inch | Resolution: 2736 x 1824 pixels | CPU: Intel Core i5 | Storage: 256 GB | Rear camera: 8 MP | Front camera: 5 MP
⊕ Has a USB-C port
⊕ Wi-Fi 6 Support
⊕ Solid Keyboard and Pen Stylus
⊖ High battery consumption
⊖ Heavy compared to other tablets for note taking
The company released this device together with new Microsoft Surface Laptops and the Surface Pro X this year. Microsoft Surface Pro is not just a powerful note taking tablet, but it is rather a detachable tablet computer. If you have ever used Microsoft tablets before, you will quickly figure out how to work with this device since the process is identical in all cases – attach an included kickstand, connect the Surface Signature Keyboard and you are ready to go. The keyboard, as well as the Surface Pen, is an optional accessory, but if you are in need of a full-fledged tablet, they will come in handy.
We used a light meter to test how bright the Surface Pro 7 is. The result is 395 nits of brightness, which is better than an average laptop shows, but doesn’t reach the value shown by last year’s Surface Pro 6 (408 nits) and iPad Pro (484 nits). The color analysis showed similar results, with the Pro 7 reproducing a solid 97% of the sRGB color gamut, while the Pro 6 hit 136% and the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 boasted 113%.
Weight: 771 g | Screen size: 10.5 inch | Resolution: 2560 x 1600 pixels | CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 | Storage: 256 GB | Rear camera: 13 MP | Front camera: 8 MP
⊕ Fast processor
⊕ Amazing cameras
⊕ Decent battery life
⊕ S Pen in the kit
⊖ Lacks Headphone Jack
⊖ Sluggish fingerprint scanner
The Galaxy Tab S6 is a flagship tablet computer with Android OS designed by Samsung. It can be called the best tablet to take notes because of remarkable hardware specs, S Pen support, the Samsung DeX productivity UI, and the possibility to use a custom keyboard. It is ranked as a top-tier device, a competitor to 2019 Apple’s iPad Air and iPad Pro.
The manufacturer decided to make the Tab S6 thinner and lighter, so you may need to spend some time to get used to it. The 10.5-inch AMOLED display is left intact. Other modifications touched the bezels, which became thinner, and corner, giving them a rounded design. Thus, the Galaxy Tab S6 has a sleek, minimalistic design, slightly resembling the iPad Pro.
The sign-in is simplified with an on-screen fingerprint scanner, while a 2-tap gesture wakes the tablet. Some users claim that streamlining has gone too far, since there is no headphone jack, but the quad speakers tuned by Dolby Atmos and AKG slightly compensate for it.
Weight: 450 g | Screen size: 10.5-inch | Resolution: 2224x1668 pixels | CPU: A12 Bionic | Storage: 64 GB | Rear camera: 8 MP | Front camera: 7 MP
⊕ Low battery consumption
⊕ Decent processor
⊖ Lags behind iPad Pro line in terms of speed
⊖ Irreplaceable battery
The iPad Air can become a wonderful companion for anyone already familiar with the iPad Air line. This is a thin, rather lightweight device (approximately 1 pound), with thick bezels at the top and bottom to leave space for the Touch ID-enabled home button. The first thing that catches an eye is an improved display if compared with an average IPad tablet for taking notes. Developers also laminated the screen to the front glass in order to get rid of an air gap, which is a frequent problem with cheaper tablets.
In such a way, pixels seem to be closer to the fingertip ensuring pleasant tablet note taking experience. The Apple team decided to sacrifice some other features to reduce the cost of this note taking device. They left only 2 speakers near the home button and downgraded the back camera, though it isn’t a real problem if you are mainly interested in taking notes. The iPad Air can also be paired with the Apple Pencil, which is nice news, since initially this tool was meant solely for the iPad Pro. Still, you can use iPencil of the first generation with your Air, while a powerful magnetic model is compatible only with the latest iPad Pro.
Weight: 760 g | Screen size: 12.3-inch | Resolution: 1920x1280 pixels | CPU: Intel Core i3 | Storage: 256 GB | Rear camera: 5 MP | Front camera: 2 MP
⊕ Nice variety of ports
⊕ Cheaper than Surface Pro
⊕ Reasonably priced
⊖ Intel Core m3 CPU is underpowered
⊖ Touchpad is of minor help
⊖ Poor battery life
We can hardly call CHUWI UBook Pro the best tablet for writing notes, since its capabilities are far behind what the leaders of this niche offer, but it is still a stylish device sold at a reasonable cost. Most users complain that Core m3 processor is rather slow, which is actually true, but if you manage to put up with it, you will get a super-bright 12.3-inch display and 3 USB ports, making CHUWI UBook Pro a more appealing option than pricier Surface Pro.
CHUWI has made a name for itself as a manufacturer of the cheapest 15.6-inch 4K UHD laptops, but now they want to poach Microsoft Surface Pro users with their own counterpart. The products of this company have above-average displays, which is relevant for the UBook Pro. The latter has a 12.3-inch 3:2 1920x1280 BOE TV123WAM IPS panel, which no other cheap note taking tablet in our database at the moment can boast of, but it can be compared with the LG Philips LP123WQ112604 panel on the Surface Pro 6.
Check the tablet below to learn about the color coverage, contrast ratio and response time for the tablet. CHUWI UBook Pro is supplied with a U-frame stand instead of a solid flat panel. You can fold it out to about 145, which ensures absolute convenience when taking notes with a pen. The stand works as in any other model and is great for regular use.
Weight: 300 g | Screen size: 9-inch | Resolution: 2048x1536 pixels | CPU: A12 Bionic | Storage: 64 GB | Rear camera: 8 MP | Front camera: 7 MP
⊕ Small, but crisp high-resolution display
⊕ Speedy Processor
⊕ System-wide mirroring support
⊖ Small storage, which can’t be expanded
⊖ Irreplaceable battery
Apple iPad Mini will interest users on the lookout for a compact tablet for notetaking, which can withstand tight competition with hundreds of average-sized devices. This model has a bright display and can be paired with iPencil of the first generation. The tablet conveniently sits in hands and allows writing down important info just flicking-open the Smart Cover. It is lightweight and portable, which is ideal if you plan to carry it with you wherever you go.
The thing that surprised us most of all was the battery life, which surpassed even the promised 10-hour work. The charging time is short, so you don’t have to wait forever to grab your Apple iPad Mini and go to another meeting or whatever else you need it for. The company used one and the same OS both for their iPads and iPhones, but in September 2019 they released the offshoot of iOS 13 for the tablets, known as iPadOS.
They took such a step to distinguish iPads from large iPhones, turning the former into amazing Mac-Esque work stations with support for gesture controls and advanced markups. Visit our iPadOS hub to learn more about this operating system.
Weight: 774 g | Screen size: 13-inch | Resolution: 2880 x 1920 pixels | CPU: Qualcomm SQ1 | Storage: 128 GB | Rear camera: 10 MP | Front camera: 5 MP
⊕ Very thin and lightweight
⊕ Better keyboard than iPad Pro has
⊕ Sleek thin-bezel display
⊖ ARM CPU issues
⊖ Lacks Pen and Type Cover
This is a 2-in-1 device, which can serve as a full-fledged laptop and a powerful tablet you can write on. There is an “optional” keyboard in the package, which is easily attached with the help of guiding magnets. Some users mistakenly believe that a 2-in-1 nature means that the keyboard is thinner than in a regular laptop or PC, so typing will be more difficult and time-consuming. This is not the case with Microsoft Surface Pro X.
We liked the stylish and clean design of this device and its bright display. The biggest downside of the tablet is its cost, which draws away many potential buyers. The Surface Pro X has to compete not only with tablets for note taking designed by other manufacturers, but also with devices in the Surface lineup.
Apple iPad ProOur Choice
Microsoft Surface Pro 7Best Hybrid
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Samsung Galaxy Tab S6Best Android
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Typically, while choosing a tablet for writing notes, people pay attention to the battery duration, a pen or the pressure sensitivity, while the key factor is the display.
You can expect the smoothest note writing experience only if you use a device with a top-quality display. The size of the display is of lesser importance if compared with its type, brightness, and general responsiveness.
What unites such tablets for note taking as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, Apple iPad Pro and Microsoft Surface?
They all have a small weight, portable dimensions and robust body design. Though they run on a different OS, they all ensure you won’t get tired quickly while writing something down. Our personal favorite in this aspect is the iPad Pro, which combines amazing capabilities in a compact body.
You can write on table in many different situations – in school, college, at work, at conferences and what not. This defines the type of a tablet you should invest in. A tablet with a big screen is a perfect option if you need to create schemes with many miniature components. If you are a pupil, you can choose a smaller tablet for college with a narrower list of functions. So, think about the way you will use a note taking tablet before buying one.
Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 is a great variant. It costs $300 and has long battery life.
Samsung Galaxy Tab A is perfect tablet for reading, offering a good set of features for the money.
It is a matter of taste. Some people like typing with a tablet with keyboard, while others need a handwriting tablet.
This is a universal device. You can write notes quicker, without carrying a pen and a notebook with you. Besides, you can even snap photos if the time is limited.