Tablets, due to their compact size and excellent functionality, are perfect for note taking. Not only do they allow you to type some give you the ability to use a stylus as well. However, just because you purchase a tablet does not mean it will be ideal for taking notes. For that, you need to get a strong, well-rounded device.
Finding one tablet for one special need is never easy. Every model listed in this article stands on its own, but also allows you to easily take notes if you so wish. We will break them down in further detail below.
- The iPad is a fantastic device that can do a little bit of everything. It is sleek, strong, and fast. If you want a more well-rounded machine that also takes notes, this is the model for you.
- Few note taking tablets have more functionality than the Microsoft Surface Go. This Windows device is perfect for people who want the ability to use their tablet as a laptop-like device.
- If you’re someone who loves Android, the Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 is a great note taking tablet. The included S Pen is easy to use and helps bring your note taking to the next level. This is also light and comes with a stellar battery.
Who Should Get This?
These tablets are, of course, for anyone who needs to take notes. While you can always go with a classic pen-and-paper setup, the functionality of a note-taking tablet is perfect for students and professionals alike. If you’re someone who needs a way to quickly jot down notes and wants them all in one easy-to-access place, the following options are for you.
Best Tablet for Note Taking: What to Consider?
Stylus vs Keyboard
When picking out your tablet, you need to know how you want to take notes. Some users don’t mind using their fingers and tapping on the screen, but it’s much easier when you have extra accessories. Certain tablets have detachable keyboards that give you a better way to type, while others come with styluses so you can write directly onto the screen. The one you choose comes down to personal preference as well as how you want to use your device.
It’s never convenient when your tablet dies on you unexpectedly. It’s even less convenient when you’re taking notes. Look for models that have all day or extended batteries that hold up even when you’re using multiple programs. While you might have access to an outlet most of the time you’re working, you never know when you’re going to be somewhere there isn’t a ready power source. Plus, the less charging you have to do, the better.
Anytime you’re looking at a tablet for note taking, you need to consider how well it responds to your typing or writing. Do your best to get a solid machine with a good amount of internal power. While you can go with lower specs, such devices might lag or take an extra second to record any changes. That might not seem like a big deal, but it becomes a problem when you need to go back and edit as you’re working.
Best Tablet for Taking Notes: Our Picks in 2020
1. Apple iPad
The Apple iPad has long been king of the tablet game, and for good reason. This device has an incredibly sharp Retina display, a bright glass-covered screen, and a solid 10-hour battery life. That combination is then backed up by strong audio, two high-quality cameras, and a fantastic app store to give you one of the best devices on the market. If you want a note taking device that also doubles as a relaxation machine, this is the one to pick.
In terms of note taking, the iPad offers many solid apps like OneNote, Evernote, and Google Keep. You can also keep everything in one easy-to-access place thanks to Apple Notes and the Cloud. If you feel like spending some extra money, you can get a Smart Keyboard or Apple Pencil. Both accessories bring your note taking to the next level and make it much easier to use the device.
What We Like:
- 10-hour battery life
- Retina display
- Clear and crisp screen
- Touch ID fingerprint sensor
- Excellent cameras
- Premium audio
- Three professional color options
What We Don’t Like:
- Battery can drain quickly with heavy use
- Not the most durable
The Microsoft Surface Go is a solid tablet that can quickly turn into a laptop if you so need. This model is all about functionality. On its own, it stands a solid tablet. However, with just a few extras (keyboard, mouse, monitor) this can work as your primary laptop. If you don’t mind spending a bit of extra money on a well-rounded device, no note taking tablet comes with more power or response than the Surface Go.
This device’s high-resolution 10-inch screen looks great at all angles, while programs like OneNote and Microsoft Word give you a way to keep your notes in one place. The optional keyboard works extremely well, and the Surface Pen, which has an eraser alongside 4,096 levels of pressure sensitivity, is the best way to take notes in a more traditional manner.
What We Like:
- High resolution 10-inch screen
- Versatility of laptop
- Lightweight and easy to carry
- 9-hour battery
- 4GB of RAM
- Surface Pen
- Ambient light sensor
- Solid security
- Charges quickly
What We Don’t Like:
- Could run a bit faster
The Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 is a tablet that seems to be made with note taking in mind. First, it comes with a handy S Pen that’s easy to use and gives you the ability to both draw and write as you see fit. In addition, the 16-hour battery life ensures you can use this as long as you want without worrying about it dying. It is also lightweight, weighing in at just one pound, which means you can easily bring it with you when you leave the house.
Fully equipped with the Google Play Store, the Tab S4 gives you access to a wide range of fantastic applications, and the 64GB of storage should be more than enough internal space. If it’s not, there’s also a microSD card slot. You can add on a keyboard as well. While this may not be as well known as the other models on this list, the S Pen and strong specs make it the perfect choice for Android users who want to take notes.
What We Like:
- Included S Pen
- 16-hour battery
- Octa-core processor
- Super AMOLED display
- Excellent voice control
- Dolby Atmos offers excellent audio
- Bluetooth compatible
- Optional keyboard
What We Don’t Like:
- Certain accessories sold separately
- Heavier than previous models
Useful Tips and Information
As mentioned above, one of the biggest decisions you’ll make when getting a note taking tablet is if you want to use a keyboard or stylus. There are many great tablet accessories on the market, and they all make your life easier. If you’re curious about what else you can get beyond what’s listed above, check out this guide.
Note taking can be done without any extra programs, but there’s nothing wrong with getting a good app. If you’re curious about which ones can help you write, this video breaks down the best ones.
Tablets are great for relaxing, but they can be functional as well. Every model outlined here gives you an excellent way to take notes, with or without any extra accessories. As they all have great features, specs, and apps, pick the operating system you’re most familiar with and go that way.
Do you use a tablet to take notes? Which one do you prefer and why? Let us know below.
Andreas is a freelance tech writer based in California. He works on a Mac in the office and lives with a PC and many old computer electronics at home. While he is not reading or writing, you’ll probably find him playing online games with friends.