The days of pen and paper are behind us now. As today, the iPad provides a fully digital method of note-taking. The tablet can be much more practical to bring to school or work. With an iPad and a good note-taking app, all the tools you need to take amazing notes are right there in one place. And if you get an Apple Pencil or stylus, it can help you take digital notes neatly.
Since the most important thing you’ll need to take notes on an iPad is a great app designed for such a purpose, you’ll likely be sifting through dozens of these on the app store. So here we’ve gathered some of the best note-taking apps to up your note-taking game no matter what you need them for.
GoodNotes has all the features you need to create the best notes. Whether you want to make your notes from a blank slate or mark up a PDF, you can do both in GoodNotes. One unique feature of GoodNotes is that you can create your own notebooks to store your notes for better organization. You can also use GoodNotes synced on your iPhone.
GoodNotes includes different writing tools, highlighters, handwriting recognition, zoom features, and more.
GoodNotes is free. However, you’re limited to only three notebooks at a time. You can buy the full version for $7.99.
Notability has excellent features and is especially useful for taking notes for school. Some unique features Notability provides are the ability to add audio recordings to your notes and a feature that converts written math equations. You can also use the app to annotate PDFs.
If you need organization, you may want to try out a different app, as its not Notability’s strong point.
You can use Notability for free, apart from a few premium features. To buy premium, this costs $11.99 a year.
Evernote focuses less on handwritten notes and more on typing, so if you don’t have a stylus or don’t want to handwrite notes, this could be a good choice. Evernote allows you to organize your notes in notebooks and provides many features and templates for creating detailed notes. You can make to-do lists, tables, schedules, and more.
Evernote provides the basic features for free. However, there are a couple different pricing plans if you want access to more features.
The Personal tier at $6.67 a month provides more space and features like adding your Google Calendar and offline access. The Professional tier is $9.17 a month and further upgrades your experience with more features and allows you to integrate Evernote into programs like Slack.
Don’t want to go looking for a notes app to download? Instead, you could try one that already comes with your iPad automatically. Most are familiar with the Apple Notes app, and it’s a basic but well-designed note-taking app if you don’t want or need lots of features. It provides a pen, highlighter, selection tool, and you can type or handwrite notes. You can also attach PDFs and images to your notes, although you can’t upload them to annotate directly.
If you just want something barebones, Apple Notes gets the job done, and you won’t have to worry about paying a premium.
Noteshelf is a good option if you want something with the power of Goodnotes or Notability, but it has a simpler design that makes navigating your notes easy. In addition, it provides all the features of similar note apps, allowing you to create notebooks and customize them to your liking.
Noteshelf also excels at helping you create detailed notes by allowing you to zoom in while you’re writing and making your tools easy to access as you do so.
You can buy Noteshelf on the App Store for $9.99.
ZoomNotes is a different type of note-taking app allowing you to write your notes on an endless page. Once you open a note and begin writing, you can move around and zoom out or in. This type of note-taking is apt for creating charts or brainstorming.
You can also create sub-pages within the larger page and include images, sticky notes, or a PDF you want to annotate. If you like taking notes with an endless amount of space, ZoomNotes is a perfect choice.
You can use the free version of ZoomNotes with limited capabilities or buy the full app for $7.99.
Microsoft OneNote is a note app that provides everything you need to create helpful notes. You can simultaneously use text and handwriting, add images, sticky notes, and more. OneNote is great at keeping notes organized, allowing you to quickly find recent notes or even pin notes that you want front and center.
OneNote is also completely free to use, so you can download it and use all the features immediately. OneNote is also included as a Microsoft Office 365 app, so you can integrate it with other Microsoft Office apps.
Take Great Notes With These Apps
Finding a good app for taking notes on your iPad can be intimidating as there are so many options, and you likely want to start taking your notes as quickly as possible. No matter what you’re taking notes for, the apps above are great choices. With a wide variety of features and tools available across these apps, you’re sure to find one that works for you.