my samsung tablet as one of the best note taking tablets

Best Note Taking Tablets of 2024

Note-taking is a good thing. Connecting the brain to paper helps us seed information, work out ideas, and improve our memories and learning abilities. I take handwritten notes every day and see a notebook as an essential part of my home office setup.

Any notebook will do, including an electronic note taking tablet. Still, the unnatural feeling of an electronic screen and stylus can leave us wanting a more real note-taking experience to cement brilliant ideas. At the same time, a tablet offers massive benefits, such as improved editing, write-to-text conversion, endless storage in a tiny footprint, and multiple access points for your notes.

The good news is that the note-taking capabilities improve each year, making electronic tablets a more realistic solution. Here are the best note-taking tablets today in my experience.

If you are new to electronic note-taking, I also include a section toward the end laying out what a note-taking tablets are, the tech behind them, and the pros and cons of using them vs. traditional paper. You get everything you need to choose the best option for note taking and the right tablet for all your unique needs.

Please note that some designs may contain affiliate links. As an affiliate, I may receive a commission for recommendations or purchases made through links on my website without any extra cost to you. For more information, please read my disclaimer.

Most Realistic Writing

reMarkable 2 best note taking tablet

About The Product

If you want the most authentic writing experience and can go without viewing videos, color images, emails, and a web browser, the reMarkable 2 is the best choice. This e ink tablet allows for a soft, non-reflective screen that is easy on the eyes, and the textured surface and cardboard tip on the marker create the feeling and sound of friction as you write. The speed of the e-ink from the marker is quick: just 21 milliseconds. You can still spot a delay, but it won’t be noticeable after a while.

You can buy two options of markers which attach magnetically to the side of the tablet. Like all tablets, the pen tips on both wear down over time. These marker tips last three to seven weeks. A keyboard provides an alternate method of note-taking but has a noticeable delay.

The reMarkable 2 offers templates for notes, drawing, charting music, organizing, and making to-do lists. The black-and-white technology doesn’t allow for colored highlights or images, and the device doesn’t have a light. You’ll need a desk lamp or light bar in dark spaces. It is also large at 8″ x 10″. Still, it is extremely thin and sturdy.

You can download PDFs, Word docs, PowerPoint docs, and e-books and mark them up. The company’s Connect app helps you back up your notes and edits on your computer. The app also lets you display real-time notes like a whiteboard during video meetings. Pretty nifty.

My Thoughts

You’ll find other tablets offer far more benefits, but if all you want is a realistic writing experience, this is the tablet to get. Still, it isn’t cheap when considering the lack of features. At $279, it is comparable to the lowest-priced Apple tablet and has far fewer capabilities. You should also have a cover, which runs from $129 to $169.

You can’t browse the web and send emails: This is for taking notes and editing docs only. 

Syncing data is difficult: It won’t sync to other note-taking apps, and downloading e-books and PDFs is a struggle. You have to use reMarkable’s Connect app at $3 per month to store data for longer than 50 days and to transfer data to the tablet from your computer and from the tablet to Google Drive, DropBox, and Microsoft OneDrive.

You can’t edit notes you export: You need to save a new copy as a new document.

It doesn’t have a light: You will need a secondary light source like real paper and pen.

It has significant add-on costs: In addition to the price of the notebook, the markers range from $79 to $129. The Type Folio keyboard/cover costs around $200, and the standard cover runs $129 to $169. Again, you need the Connect app account at $ 3 per month for added features.

Details

  • Technology: E-Ink
  • Size: 7.36 x 9.68 x 0.19″
  • Screen size: 10.3″, glare-free, black and white 
  • Weight: 403.5 g (.88 lb)
  • Resolution: 872 x 1404 resolution (226 DPI)
  • Latency: 21 milliseconds
  • Storage: 1 GB internal, 8 GB external
  • Backlighting:  No
  • Magnetic marker holder: Yes
  • Life of marker tip: 3 to 7 weeks
  • Marker included: No, sold separately
  • Auto-charging for marker: Yes (no charging required)
  • Keyboard compatible: Yes
  • Battery Life: 2 weeks with usage or three weeks on standby
  • Charging: USB-C
  • Water resistant: No
  • Colors: Silver frame, black and white screen
  • Warranty: 3 years with Connect account

Pros

  • Most precise note-taking appearance
  • Low latency
  • Durable
  • Thin and lightweight

Cons

  • No email, video, or color image displaying
  • Challenging importing and exporting
  • Limited features for the price
  • Must buy the pencil separately
  • Requires additional monthly subscription to store notes longer than 50 days

Best E-Reader with Note Taking Ability

Kindle Scribe

About The Product

If you want an e-ink device that prioritizes PDF editing and e-book compatibility over the writing experience, go with the Kindle Scribe. The latency of the Scribe is the same as the reMakrable 2, but the appearance of the writing suffers a bit.

The pen is comfortable and grippy, and like the reMarkable product, it sounds like a pencil on paper. The premium pen also has a device on the back that works like an eraser, which can also be assigned different shortcuts. Like all markers, the tip wears down – in this case, 3 to 4 weeks.

Choose from multiple note page templates. Unlike other Amazon tablets, you can take notes on the books you read.

You get the added benefit of a front light for easy writing and reading. You can also change the color of the light between warm and cool.

One charge lasts for months as a reader or weeks as a writer, allowing for extended note-taking sessions without worry. You also get more than double the GB storage vs. the reMarkable – as much as 64 GB total, plus endless storage capabilities on the Amazon cloud.

My Thoughts

The Kindle Scribe is better than the reMarkable 2 in functions but not in writing ability. Still, the note-taking aspect changes the Kindle from being just an e-book device. You can save data and load PDFs and e-books much easier than the reMarkable 2. It is even better than the LCD Amazon Fire Max 11 tablet. Unfortunately, the writing experience of the Fire is awful. But you can’t use the Scribe with a keyboard as of now.

It is also a bit expensive for what you get – about the price of the reMarkable 2 and lacks many of the same traits like access to a standard web browser and video and color images. But if you love reading e-books and want to take notes, this is the Kindle to get.

Details

  • Price: $339
  • Technology: E-Ink
  • Size: 7.7 x 9.0 x .22″
  • Screen: 10.2″, glare-free, black and white
  • Weight: 15.3 oz
  • Resolution: 300 DPI
  • Latency: 20 milliseconds
  • Storage: 16GB, 32 GB, 64 GB
  • Backlighting:  Frontlight, 35 LED
  • Magnetic marker holder: yes
  • Life of marker tip: 3 to 4 weeks
  • Marker included: Yes
  • Auto-charging for marker: Yes (no charge required)
  • Keyboard compatible: No
  • Battery Life: 3 months as a reader, 3 weeks as a writer
  • Charging: USB-C
  • Water resistant: No
  • Colors: Tungsten
  • Warranty: 1-year limited and optional up to 3 years

Pros

  • You have endless notes and can easily sync, save, and share the data across multiple devices.
  • Onboard light for nighttime reading and writing
  • Easily edit PDFs and make notes in e-books
  • Long charge

Cons

  • Not compatible with keyboard
  • Writing quality is inferior to reMarkable 2

Best Writing Experience for an LCD Tablet

Samsung Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra

About The Product

The Samsung Galaxy S9 series is the best LCD tablet for writing. The Android tablet also competes head-to-head with Apple’s iPads in terms of other features and is better as a writing tablet.

The S9 series has an extremely low latency of 2.9 milliseconds vs. the iPad’s 9 milliseconds. Unlike the iPad, it also comes with a stylus at no charge. The rubber tip on the marker/pen has a dampened sound on the screen, making it more enjoyable for writing. In fact, I still own the previous S8 and enjoy it immensely. I find writing on these tablets pleasurable and better than the Apple Pencil. You can add a clear, textured screen for improved gripping. The pen attaches magnetically to the tablet.

There are more appealing traits over the iPad. For example, you can add a MicroSD card for massive storage capabilities at a relatively low price – a benefit Apple doesn’t offer. The split-screen feature on the Samsung is also less awkward.

Like the iPad, you can choose from a wide range of note-taking apps. You can choose an app you already use or select one with the writing experience you want. (Each has its own latency.)

There are multiple tablet sizes, and the S9 Ultra is larger than the largest iPad.

All the Samsung Galaxy tablets are beautiful, solidly constructed, and comfortable to hold. They are also the only tablets on this list that are water-resistant. The optional keyboard addition also makes the tablet feel almost identical to a laptop.

My Thoughts

The design, feel, and writing quality of the Samsung S9 series make it my top LCD device for note-taking. The extremely low latency and feeling of the pen make writing comfortable and fun. The tablets are also beautiful and extremely well-made.

That all said, the magnet for the pen on the back is awkward. The iPad handled that part right.

Details

  • Price:
    • Galaxy Tab S9 = $919.99 (on sale as of this writing for $799.99)
    • Galaxy Tab S9+ = $1,119.99 (on sale as of this writing for $999.99)
    • Galaxy Tab S9 Ultra = $1,319.99 (on sale as of this writing for $1,199.99)
  • Technology: LCD
  • Size: 10.1 to 12.85″ high x 6.53 to 8.21″ wide
  • Screen: 11″ to 14.6″
  • Weight: 1.10 lb to 1.61 lb
  • Resolution: Base model 2960×1440 pixels and 570 pixels per inch
  • Latency: 2.9 milliseconds
  • Storage: Between 8GB and 16 GB, depending on the model chosen
  • Backlighting:  Yes
  • Magnetic marker holder: Yes (on the rear of the device)
  • Life of marker tip:
  • Marker included: yes
  • Auto-charging for marker: Yes (no charge required)
  • Keyboard compatible:
  • Battery Life: one day after heavy use
  • Charging: USB-C
  • Water resistant: Yes
  • Colors: Graphite or beige
  • Warranty: 1-year limited

Pros

  • Best tablet for taking notes
  • Excellent writing experience
  • Range of tablet sizes
  • Marker included
  • Water-resistant
  • Easy split screen experience
  • Micro SD card for more memory

Cons

  • The largest size seems too large
  • High cost
  • Not as large an ecosystem as Apple
  • The rear magnet for the pen is awkward

Best Performance Tablet Overall

Apple iPad Pro

About The Product

(1st sentence should be bold and clearly outline the benefit)

Apple is often cited as offering the best tablets on the market, though today’s Samsung S9 is a legitimate competitor – especially in the writing category. The Samsung S9 has a lower latency of 2.9 milliseconds vs. Apple’s 9 milliseconds. Still, the iPad is exceptionally well-made, simple to use, and syncs easily across all Apple devices.

You can use many styluses with it. I tried the Apple Pencil 2nd generation and found that the hard tip reduces the realistic feel of writing. The tip needs replacing every six months or so. The pencil stores and charges magnetically against the edge of the tablet.

Like other non-e-ink tablets, the surface glass is slick and doesn’t provide the feeling of gripping the pencil. A transparent textured screen cover will help, but the reMarkable 2 has the most realistic writing experience. The clear cover also reduces the clarity of the screen. That said, the latency of the iPad is much lower.

The Apple iPad offers dual screen capability and quick-notes options, such as calling up the notepad with just a touch of the pencil on the screen. Apple makes four tablet sizes, and each can be used as a writing tablet. If you use your iPad regularly, you will likely need to charge the tablet each day.

Like the Samsung and Pixel tablets listed here, the iPad is far more useful than e-ink devices. It does everything a standard computer can do, like let you watch videos, read books, check emails, and play games. You also get more note-taking options, with compatibility with a full range of apps, including Apple Notes, which is excellent and free.

My Thoughts

One of the biggest attractions of the Apple iPad as a writing device is Apple Notes. Like everything from Apple, it is simple, intuitive, and well-designed. You may never use another app after using theirs, and it gets better with each update. Still, you can use almost any other note-taking app.

Sharing your notes and files is extremely fast and easy across all Apple devices. You also get everything a tablet can provide and with the easiest experience, though the reMarkable 2 still has the best writing quality. The Samsung S9 also works better in split-screen mode.

Details

  • Price:
    • iPad Pro: $799
    • iPad Air: $599
    • iPad 10th Generation: $449
    • iPad 9th Generation: $329
    • iPad mini: $499
  • Pencil: $129 for 2nd generation
  • Technology: LCD screen
  • Size: See Apple Store for each device
  • Weight: See Apple Store for each device
  • Resolution: depends on each device
  • Latency: 9 milliseconds
  • Storage: 128MB to 2 TB
  • Backlighting:  Yes
  • Magnetic marker holder: Yes
  • Life of marker tip: 6 months or more
  • Marker included: No
  • Auto-charging for marker: Yes
  • Keyboard compatible: Yes
  • Battery Life: one day after heavy use
  • Charging: Lighting cover or USB-C, depending on model chosen
  • Water resistant: No
  • Colors:
  • Warranty:

Pros

  • Easily syncs to cloud and all Apple devices
  • Quality build
  • Simple and intuitive to use
  • High-quality stylus
  • Multiple sizes

Cons

  • The pencil is a bit too hard
  • Requires screen cover for the realistic feel of pencil on paper
  • Less easy to use in split screen mode vs. Samsung Galaxy S9

Best Google Tablet

Google Pixel Tablet

About The Product

If you want to stay within the Google ecosystem, this is the one to buy. The latency of this tablet is not as short as the iPad and Samsung S9 (33 milliseconds), but it is better than the Google Chrome tablets. It also comes with a stand that doubles as a speaker.

Strangely enough, Google Notes, a product of its app ecosystem, is annoying due to the latency. You will get a better experience with other apps, and some you may already use. Like all other non-e-ink tablets, you can improve the natural feeling of writing with a paper-like screen protector, although sacrificing a bit of screen clarity.

My Thoughts

The Samsung S9 and Apple iPads are technically better, but the Google Pixel tablet is still perfect. I don’t understand why the Google Notes app performs so poorly, but they are working on it. You can use other apps to get your desired speed and writing quality.

The speaker stand is a big perk, but it is factored into the price and is not optional. In terms of writing ability for an Android device, you will enjoy the Samsung S9 series more. The fact that Google doesn’t offer its own stylus or keyboard is a bummer, but many options are available in the market.

Details

  • Price: $499
  • Pencil: Requires a third-party provider
  • Technology: LCD
  • Size:  Size: 10.2 x 6.7 x 0.3″
  • Screen: 10.95-inch display
  • Weight: 17.39 oz
  • Resolution:
  • Latency: Unlisted, but lower than iPad and Samsung
  • Storage: 8 GB
  • Backlighting:  Yes
  • Magnetic marker holder: Yes, on back
  • Life of marker tip: N/A
  • Marker included: No. Requires third-party provider
  • Auto-charging for marker: N/A
  • Keyboard compatible: Yes, through a third-party provider
  • Battery Life: One day after heavy use
  • Charging: USB-C
  • Water-resistant: No
  • Colors: Porcelain, hazel, or rose
  • Warranty:

Pros

  • Speaker dock included
  • Easily connect to the entire Google ecosystem

Cons

Requires a third-party provider for the stylus and keyboard

________

A note-taking tablet is a device that allows you to write, draw, and markup PDF documents electronically. It works just like pen and paper but without paper and ink.

The tablets come in two main designs: e-ink and LED/LCD versions:

E-ink Tablets

These tablets have a black-and-white, paper-like screen that reduces glare and is soft on the eyes. The technology has been found to be healthier for the eyes than LCD and offers a sound and feel closest to real paper and pencil.

Onboard lighting is either non-existent or casts down and across the front of the screen rather than from the back. The technology has a longer delay than LCD tablets when writing and using finger gestures, and you have fewer features like email and video access. The tablets work with electronic pens/pencils, and some also work with keyboards.

LED/LCD Tablets

These are the same as a computer, but you can write on them like notebooks. You can watch videos, look at color photos, check emails, and edit practically anything. The responsiveness while writing is much faster than e-ink devices, but the screens are firmer and slippery for writing, and you won’t get that realistic sound and feel of paper on paper. You can improve the experience with a textured clear cover, but it reduces image clarity.

If you are on the fence whether you should go with a tablet or use a paper notebook, here are traits of a tablet that are worth remembering:

Pros

  • More notes storage in a smaller footprint than traditional paper
  • Uses no paper
  • Syncs to multiple devices in case you lose your tablet
  • More capabilities in terms of colors, fonts, and decorating or adding charts to notes

Cons

  • Requires electricity and charging
  • It can break, immediately losing all your data history unless it is regularly backed up (which is easy)
  • Doesn’t perfectly mirror the experience of writing directly on paper with a pen or pencil

These are the best writing tablets out today. The good news is all these devices are well-made and durable. Whichever you choose, you are sure to get years of note taking. So enjoy the journey and make the most of the benefits of this unique way of writing!