Modern tablets are two-in-one devices that can be transformed into laptops for students using accessories such as detachable keyboards.
Today, most tablets include support for using a touch pen and can be used to take notes and other similar tasks.
Students can use tablets to take notes in class, companies can equip their employees with tablets to accelerate workflow and improve collaboration in projects. The possibilities are unlimited.
Choosing between different tablets to write by hand is not exactly straightforward, considering the wide variety of options available in the market.
So to help you to look for the best tablet for note-taking, we have selected the 10 best tablets. Read all about the features they offer, and then decide which one (or which ones) you like best.
1. Microsoft Surface Pro 7
- 12.3″ Touchscreen with PixelSense
- Processor Intel Core i3, i5, i7
- RAM Memory from 4GB to 16GB
- Internal Storage from 128GB to 1TB
- Windows 10 Home
Here’s a college student showing how she’s taking notes on Surface Pro 7:
Microsoft’s Surface Pro range has completely redefined tablets. The latest generation not only manages to be the best among all tablets for handwriting, but it is also a powerful two-in-one hybrid device.
The new generation of this Microsoft tablet is excellent for professional use when you have Windows 10. It has a 12.3″ screen with a resolution of 2736 x 1824 px, which gives it a 3:2 aspect ratio and makes it perfect for reading PDF documents or magazines, and of course, to take notes. The most affordable model has 8GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD hard drive. Its battery lasts longer, and its performance is higher than the previous generation.
The new technology that Microsoft has included in its “Surface Pen” makes taking notes on this tablet a joy. By clicking on a Pen button, we immediately launch OneNote, which allows you to capture drawings, sketches, and notes. The pencil has a rubber that allows interacting with the tablet differently. The PixelSense screen supports Pen for Surface and touch use.
The disadvantage of writing with a digital pen on a tablet is that you don’t feel it is real: it is much more slippery and lacks the friction of writing on paper. This also happens in the Surface Pro.
The OneNote software comes with an excellent text to text transcription function. And if we add the keyboard, this tablet can entirely replace your laptop. The battery could improve somewhat and has few apps in tablet mode.
You have many hardware versions: you can opt for using Intel Core i5, Core i7, and various storage capacities up to 1TB of SSD hard drive. You can buy the Surface without Type cover or with it. The pen is purchased separately. In the end, you can leave a good amount of money if you add all the features, far exceeding 900 dollars.
2. Apple iPad Pro
- 11″ Liquid Retina display
- A12X Bionic chip
- Internal Storage from 64GB to 1TB
- 7MP front camera and 12MP back camera
- iOS 12
Here’s a student showing how she’s using iPad Pro for note-taking. Some amazing tips:
The latest generation Apple iPad Pro is one of the best tablets you can find in the market and also has a stylus. The Apple iPad Pro comes in two sizes, an 11-inch model and a larger 12.9-inch version.
Although sold separately, the Apple pencil is designed for artists and graphic designers & of course note-takers. The largest model is recommended. The pen is purchased separately as if you want the Smart Keyboard Folio (a keyboard that works quite well and also protects the iPad Pro).
It makes complex tasks turn into something as simple and natural as touching, sliding, or writing with a pencil. Do you hit the size that makes us have to use it differently than we are used in a smaller tablet? The second generation pen has improved a lot compared to the first version.
Its screen is a pass, the hardware is the best Apple has ever done, and its speakers are really powerful.
3. Microsoft Surface Pro 6
- 12.3″ Touchscreen with PixelSense
- Intel Core i5 or i7
- Memory RAM of 8GB or 16GB
- Storage from 128GB to 1TB
- Windows 10 Home
Powered by an Intel Core i7 processor with 8 GB of RAM, the Surface Pro includes 256 GB of integrated storage.
In addition, it has a 12.3-inch PixelSense screen with a resolution of 2736 by 1824 pixels and 10-point multi-touch support.
On the other hand, the new Surface Pen (sold separately) perfectly complements the high-resolution screen, as it allows you to take notes, draw and do a lot of other things.
This touch pen provides a feeling as natural as a pen on paper, with a writing tip on one end and an eraser on the other. In addition, it has 4096 pressure points to achieve greater sensitivity.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 6 has the main connectivity options, including USB 3.0, MicroSDXC, 3.5 mm audio, and Mini Display.
It also has Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/n/ac and Bluetooth 4.1. With a 5-megapixel front camera and an 8-megapixel rear camera, the Surface Pro also has two microphones and 1.6-watt stereo speakers.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 6 operates with Windows 10 Pro and has a battery with a duration of up to 13.5 hours playing a video.
4. Lenovo Yoga Book
- 10.1″ screen size
- 2.4 GHz Intel Atom processor
- 4 GB RAM
- 64 GB SSD storage
- Android OS
The Lenovo Yoga Book is the most potent tablet of the firm within the domestic vocation and one of the latest launched by the Chinese firm, which is why it includes the Android Oreo operating system. And it is that Lenovo offers in its catalog a wide assortment of tablets, but few are those that have updated software.
The Yoga Book is a tablet designed for family use that offers several accounts, children mode, and robust and quality finishes.
Its orientation is clear towards leisure, with tight hardware that stands out for the integration of four microphones, which make it a model with attractive specifications for multimedia consumption and a sufficient hardware composition for usual tasks such as navigation.
However, it is a light and stylized tablet with considerable autonomy and fingerprint reader, which makes it an attractive model for mobility.
5. HP Envy x2
- 12.3″ screen size with stylus pen
- 2.2 GHz Qualcomm processor
- 4 GB RAM
- 128 GB Flash Storage
- Windows 10
If you have to take a lot of notes, you will have to look for handwriting tablets that can work for many hours before you have to plug them in. And that is exactly what the Envy x2 from HP offers.
This tablet can work for an incredible 22 hours (playing video) with a single charge.
And not only that, but the rest period is more than 40 days. The reason behind this duration is the use of a SoC (System on Chip, that is, System on Chip).
As it is an “always connected” computer, the Envy x2 uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 chipset (ARM architecture), instead of an Intel processor (x86 architecture). It also has 4 GB of RAM and 128 GB of universal flash storage.
In addition, the HP Envy x2 offers a 12.3-inch multi-touch screen protected by a Gorilla Glass layer with a resolution of 1920 by 1280 pixels.
Includes the HP Digital Pen touch pen, which takes care of all your needs when taking notes and offers support for Windows Ink. Thanks to the 4G LTE, the x2 allows you always to be connected.
Other connectivity options include USB Type C, a microSD card slot, and a 3.5 mm audio connection.
It also has a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera. The set also includes stereo speakers adapted by Bang & Olufsen.
The HP Envy x2 runs Windows 10 S right out of the box, but you can upgrade to Windows 10 Pro.
6. Acer Chromebook Tab 10 Renewed
- 9,7″ screen size
- Cortex A53 processor
- 32 GB Flash memory
- 4 GB RAM
- Chrome OS
Among the tablets for handwriting with iOS, Android, and Windows, there are plenty of options from which you can choose. However, if none of them excites you, you might want to take a look at the Acer Chromebook Tab 10.
As the name suggests, Chromebook Tab 10 runs Chrome OS. This makes it the first tablet to work with the Google operating system based on your browser. With a Rockchip OP1 2 GHz processor, this tablet has 4 GB of RAM and 32 GB of internal storage.
In addition, the Acer Chromebook Tab 10 comes with a 9.7-inch multi-touch screen that has a resolution of 2048 by 1536 pixels.
Taking notes with that screen is a piece of cake thanks to the Wacom touch pen that it includes.
It uses electromagnetic resonance technology to measure the intensity of the signal at different points along with the screen sensor and perform calculations on the fly in order to determine precisely where the pencil is located on the screen, in addition to the intensity with which you press the tip of the pencil.
This allows greater accuracy and better response.
As you run Chrome OS, the Chromebook Tab 10 has access to the entire catalog of applications from the Google Play Store. In addition, this tablet has all the connectivity options, from Wi-Fi 802.11ac to Bluetooth 4.1.
Finally, the Acer Chromebook Tab 10 claims to have a battery with a duration of up to nine hours with a single charge.
7. Galaxy Tab S3
- 9.7″ Display size
- 2.2 GHz Snapdragon processor
- 4 GB RAM
- 32 GB Flash Memory
- Android OS
Thanks to its enormously successful line of Galaxy S smartphones, Samsung is virtually synonymous with top-of-the-range Android devices.
That said, this company also manufactures tablets, and its Galaxy Tab S3 is possibly the best among all the handwriting tablets available with the Android operating system.
With a design made entirely of glass, the Galaxy Tab S3 gives the feeling of being the high-end device that it is.
Its 9.7-inch Super AMOLED screen offers rich levels of contrast and ability to play HDR video. It also offers a very sharp image with its 2048×1535 pixels of resolution. On the other hand, the new and redesigned S Pen touch pen makes taking notes a joy.
With a tip that is only 0.7 millimeters thick and 4096 pressure levels, it conveys the sensation of writing as if it were a normal pen. The S Pen works great with a lot of other applications, such as Samsung Notes and Soundcamp. On the other hand, the Galaxy Tab S3 uses a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset along with 4 GB of RAM.
It owns 32 GB of internal storage and supports microSD cards up to 256 GB in size. The Galaxy Tab S3 has Wi-Fi 802.11a / b / g / n / ac, Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth, USB Type C 3.1 and a 3.5 mm audio jack.
In addition, a total of four speakers provide an immersive audio experience. As for the capture of images, this tablet has a rear camera of 13 megapixels (f / 1.9) and a front of 5 megapixels (f / 2.2).
Finally, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 can work for up to 12 hours on a single charge. As for the operating system, run Android Nougat.
8. Chuwi Hi10 Pro
- 10.1″ Screen size
- 1.92 GHz Intel processor
- 4 GB RAM
- 64 GB internal storage
- Windows OS
Both the Android and Windows platforms have their own advantages, so choosing between them can be extremely difficult. And that’s where Chuwi Hi10 Pro comes to the rescue, providing you with the best of both worlds.
The Hi10 Pro is a handwriting tablet with a dual boot that runs both Android 5.1 and Windows 10.
You can choose the operating system to use during power-up and easily switch between them. The Chuwi Hi10 Pro uses an Intel Atom-X5 processor along with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage.
It also offers support for microSD cards up to 128 GB in size. This tablet has a 10.1-inch capacitive touch screen with a resolution of 1920 by 1200 pixels, so it is ideal not only for taking notes but also for basic computing tasks and for consuming multimedia content.
On the other hand, the included magnetic keyboard allows you to switch between tablet and computer modes for students easily.
As for the connections, it includes USB Type A, USB Type C (for charging), micro USB, mini HDMI, and a 3.5 mm audio connection.
It also offers Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and has two (one in the front and one in the rear) 2-megapixel cameras. So we are facing a very versatile option in terms of handwriting tablets.
9. Microsoft Surface Go
- 10″ touchscreen with PixelSense
- 1.6 GHz Intel Pentium Gold processor
- 4 GB RAM
- 128 GB internal storage
- Windows 10 Home
The Surface Go is a compact and lightweight tablet with good finishes that stands out for the versatility of its configurations beyond capacity and connectivity and for integrating Windows 10, a desktop operating system familiar to the general user that opens the doors to both Programs like applications.
It has a 10-inch PixelSense screen, reaches a maximum resolution of 1800×1200 pixels. In this sense, it is an interesting option for those who are comfortable with this desktop system and the possibility of using programs. However, yes, in a basic way since by its processor, we can not demand intensive use.
Of course, for these scenarios of programs and multitasking, we will have to invest in the most expensive version in terms of RAM (8 GB) and storage (128 GB).
10. iPad 2018
- 9.7″ screen size
- A10 Fusion Chip
- 2 GB RAM Memory
- 32 GB flash memory
- iOS 10
In the spring of 2018, Apple launches this iPad, a very interesting option for its value for money within the tablets without professional ambition but with the concession of being compatible with the Apple pen, which opens the doors to other uses.
Although its screen does not have as much quality as the Pro’s, it is thicker and its classic design is less used, the iPad 2017 stands out for offering very good autonomy and fluid performance framed in the consumer range.
Guide to buy a tablet for taking-notes
Keep in mind that S Pen & Keyboards are being sold separately.
There is no perfect tablet, but you can definitely find a tablet that’s the best for your needs, expectations, and budget. If you are thinking of buying one, this guide might be quite helpful before your final decision, we try to provide guidance to know what factors to consider and the models available in the market.
If you’re looking for a tablet/iPad purely to take notes, then the list above you fits perfectly. Especially the top 3 tablets. If you might feel like you need to know more what these devices can do – dive deeper with us.
What to consider when choosing a tablet
Screen: size, resolution and panel type
The screen of a tablet inevitably conditions our experience with this device. In this sense, it is important to be clear about what we want to do with it and how long we will be in front of its screen.
Thus, we will not look for the same if we are going to use it to solve specific doubts and navigate while we are on the couch as a work tool or if it will be our device to consume content. In this regard, we will pay attention primarily to the size, resolution, and type of panel.
In the market, we find alternatives that range from 8 to over 12 inches. However, the bulk of models is usually around 10 inches by offering an interesting balance between lightness and comfort (in hand) that provides a content panel compared to the versatility and comfort (for the view) of larger screens.
The punctual use, the use in mobility, and the budget limitation make us go to the most compact models while the intensive use, both playful and productive, and the consumption of content leads us to the larger tablets. If we are not sure, 10-inches is the all-terrain option.
It is no coincidence that in the high range of tablets, we find models with both OLED panels and LCD, so our recommendation is that before buying a tablet, you experience live how is the visualization of contents.
Resolution is a very important parameter in tablets because of how close we place the screen of our eyes. However, rather than considering it alone, we will have to look at the relationship between the resolution and the size of the screen, that is, the density of dots per inch.
A good starting point for moderate use is 300 dpi. Although our eyes allow us to perceive higher densities, it is from this point that the level of detail will be sufficient, and our experience will be positive.
To see clearly with tangible examples, if we are looking for a tablet to spend hours in front of it or for multimedia consumption, a model with an 8-inch screen and a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536 (QXGA) have a density of 326 dpi is a good option of departure. And if we stick to the tablets at around 10 inches, we need the resolution to be 2,560 x 1,600 (WQXGA) or higher to get closer to 300 dpi.
Most diverse hardware where the software has the last word
The tablet is a private market. With a renewal rate lower than that of smartphones, the spectrum of alternatives proposed by the main manufacturers in the sector is so heterogeneous at the hardware level that we can find devices that integrate elements of a mid-range smartphone compared to usual components of laptops Again, its future use comes to the fore.
A destination-oriented to sporadic use and navigation without great displays can make a simple processor such as a quad-core MediaTek sufficient. If we aspire to run more applications fluently or multitasking, the processors with more cores designed by Huawei, Qualcomm, and Apple, which are common in their respective high-end smartphones, are appearing. We also find the Intel Pentium Gold and, already framed within the convertible category, computer processors like the latest generation Core.
The other key component that will make a difference with respect to whether we require a tablet for punctual and simple use compared to multitasking or the execution of more demanding programs and applications is RAM. Here we can extremely simple 4 GB options such as the Acer Chromebook Tab to others that reach 8 GB as the most demanding version of the Surface Go. In this sense, more RAM opens the doors to productivity and multitasking.
Betting on powerful hardware will help us make use of multitasking, play demanding titles for this format, heavy apps such as photo editors, and also for the processing of photos and videos. Of course, we must be clear that in hardware, the weakest component will be the bottleneck.
In any case, the maximum responsible for the optimization of its features is the software, so the figures of the raw specifications should not mislead us: on a tablet, mobile device hardware can perform better with a mobile operating system than Classic laptop hardware in a desktop operating system.
How much space do I need?
Unless its use is intended for offline multimedia consumption (by introducing series, movies, albums on the device or offline functions of services such as Spotify or Netflix), tablets are devices for online use: cloud services, streaming audiovisual content, online productivity apps. However, except in counted cases, the starting point should start at 32 GB.
Android, iOS or Windows: a matter of tastes, apps, and updates
As for operating systems for tablets (the convertibles we leave them out), in the market, we find iOS for the iPad, Windows in some models such as Microsoft Surface and Lenovo Yoga and the rest, a sea of models and manufacturers with Android.
iOS 13, Android Pie, and Windows 10 offer a stable and robust tablet experience, so the choice between one or the other will be a matter of taste and user experience.
However, although the offer of Android is superior, its heterogeneity plays against it in this section, since depending on the model chosen, we can find unadjusted interfaces, more or less attractive/functional layers, and updates that take in arriving or that directly, they do not arrive. And the updates are important, providing security patches, troubleshooting, additional features, and greater energy efficiency.
LTE or not LTE?
To choose the right tablet model taking into account connectivity, we must be clear where we want to use it: at home or in the office or in mobility.
The easiest connectivity we find on a tablet is Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. However, even in these technologies, the standards are different: the most ambitious and current offer Bluetooth 5.0 and Wi-Fi type 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac, with greater range and data transfers. Besides, in the case of Wi-Fi AC, we can use the 5 GHz bands of the router, less saturated.
And if we are going to use the tablet in mobility, some versions of tablets offer the option of LTE connectivity that supports 4G, which allows us to access the internet from anywhere, as long as we have our own data rate.
Design and materials
Although the pace of renewal and innovation of tablets is lower than that of smartphones, the tendency to reduced edges seems to have reached the tablets, something that we see in the new iPad Pro. Regardless of the subjectivity of its attractiveness, it is undeniable that the use of its dimensions is superior.
The material used in the chassis has an important impact on both the durability of the tablet and the cooling of the internal components. In the market, it is usual to find aluminum in the most premium tablets and polycarbonate in the medium and low ranges.
Although aluminum at a glance gives it a luxurious finish, it is properties such as lightness, rigidity, and its high coefficient of thermal conductivity – which favors heat dissipation – which makes this material one of the most used in consumer electronics.
While the most affordable models remain focused on navigation and content consumption, higher-end tablets have been finding their market as tools for professional use, an application for which accessories seem fundamental.
In this sense, the keyboard and the stylus are two of the key accessories. The first obviously for the introduction of text quickly and accurately, while the second allows sketching, editing, and digitization in creative and technical areas.
Tablets designed with a professional vocation, such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, Microsoft Surface or iPad Pro, directly have official accessories, as well as a wide range of compatible accessories from other manufacturers.
In our case, we have to take into account all the tablets that bring us the stylus to draw, to take of notes, or another activity; it will be the most important.
We hope this was helpful. Leave us a comment below and let us know which tablet is your favorite one when it comes to taking notes. Have a good one, cheers.