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Best note-taking tablets 2023

Long live the stylus. Nothing replaces the feel of a pen in hand, manually putting your thoughts on paper instead of tapping on a keyboard, but many note-takers opt for options with less paper-waster these days. To support the stylus-loving crowd, a wave of E Ink tablets that replicate the feel of paper join mainstays like the Apple iPad Pro and reMarkable 2 to offer enthusiasts more choices than ever. And this list of top note-taking options includes everything from glare-free E Ink displays to brilliant LED or LCD screens for every budget and use case.


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A good note-taking tablet is focused on handwriting first and foremost, but if you do need keyboard input in a pinch, several of our selections support accessories that can give you a set of keys and different viewing angles. A great note-taking tablet is simple to use and at the ready for when you need to get your next great idea. We still think the reMarkable 2 is the best note-taking tablet for its writing experience, but the whole list is worth a read, so you can explore all the excellent options for taking digital notes.

Best note-taking tablets: Our top choices

Two silver and gray E Ink tablets propped up next to each other.

reMarkable 2

1. Best overall note-taking tablet

A remarkable way to digitise notes

The ReMarkable 2 tablet lets you take notes by hand, and it does so exceptionally well. It is the ultimate minimalist document creation and editing tool, with Dropbox, OneDrive, and Google Drive integration.


  • Handwriting feels natural
  • Non-reflective display
  • Distraction-free interface
  • Many grids, sheet styles, and templates

  • Can’t use in dark
  • Expensive to start ? stylus and keyboard folio pricey extras
  • Unlimited cloud storage, mobile syncing, and other features require monthly subscription

The reMarkable 2 tablet lets you create as many “digital notebooks” as you can store on-board (or in the cloud with a reMarkable Connect subscription). This eliminates the need for physical notebooks, while still retaining the feel and experience of writing with pen and paper.


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It’s a tablet for writing on that has a paper-like feel… it’s a bit magical

Writing on the 10.3-inch E Ink display feels natural and responsive, and it does a reasonable job of interpreting imprecise handwriting into text. You can import PDFs and EPUB documents to annotate or read on screen, and bring in Microsoft Word documents, too. The tablet can connect to Google Drive, Dropbox, or OneDrive cloud storage. The display lacks a sidelight or backlight, though, which makes it unsuitable for use in the dark.

This tablet is thin, at just 4.83mm, and light, weighing 400g, making it perfect for carrying around all day. When paired with its Type Folio keyboard, it is a svelte travel companion that is perfect for writing by hand or annotating documents.

A gray E Ink tablet with a pen laying in front of it.

Amazon Kindle Scribe

2. Best budget note-taking tablet / e-reader duo

Amazon’s staple eReader took notes

$270 $340 Save $70

The Amazon Kindle Scribe is more than simply the largest Kindle eReader you can buy. It’s also the best note-taking tablet and eReader combo around.


  • Basic stylus included
  • Non-reflective display with sidelights
  • Full access to your Kindle book library
  • Long battery life

  • Lacks variety of pen styles
  • Few specialty note-taking templates
  • No physical keyboard option

The Amazon Kindle Scribe delivers a terrific writing experience paired with all the functionality of excellent Kindle eReaders. This 10.2-inch E Ink screen has a sharp 300ppi resolution, which means the text has smooth, crisp edges.



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It also has effective side light and color temperature adjustments, so you can use the screen in any lighting without straining your eyes. This model goes beyond the abilities of other Kindles thanks to its stylus support. Simply navigate to “Notebooks” and click “Add Notebook” to choose from an array of page templates. While the options lack the creative specialties found in the reMarkable 2, the Kindle Scribe has more options than the competing eReader/note-taking tablet Rakuten Kobo Elipsa 2E. Even more notable is that the Kindle Scribe lets you choose a template upfront, making for easier organization before you even start to write.

The stylus feels comfortable in hand and is smooth to use on the responsive display. You can also use the stylus to annotate books and PDFs, but for the most part, this is accomplished via pop-up boxes (as opposed to editing directly on the page). A few ebooks now support on-page writing, but not the majority — at least not yet, anyway.

The tablet’s primary value is that it doubles as an eReader, too. It has a web browser but no apps. The browser is slow and only able to display images in monochromatic colors, just like how it handles books and documents. The Amazon Kindle Scribe is the best choice for anyone deeply committed to Amazon’s Kindle bookstore, including students who also like to write notes.

Two gray tablets with square camera arrays with bright screens.

Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (2022)

3. Best premium note-taking tablet for Apple users

A way to keep all your notes in iCloud

$750 $800 Save $50

The Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (4th generation) packs a powerful punch with an Apple M2 processor inside. This tablet supports the second-generation Apple Pencil for accurate and seamless writing and sketching on screen.


  • Smooth, pressure-sensitive stylus for writing and drawing
  • General use tablet with full iPad app support
  • Brilliant, sharp display

  • Stylus and keyboard cost extra
  • Heavy to hold one-handed
  • Expensive

The Apple iPad Pro 11-inch (4th generation) hits the mid-ground of Apple’s tablet offerings. While other, less expensive models support the Apple Pencil, this model stands out because it strikes a balance between size, performance, and price. It weighs just over a pound, and its screen is large enough to handle everything from drawings to taking notes.


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The iPad has widespread app support for its Apple Pencil 2 stylus, making the iPad a great note-taking choice for creatives. It also works well with sharing across devices; for example, you can start something on your iPad and share your notes with an iPhone or MacBook.

As a note-taking tablet, the iPad Pro is among the most expensive models you can buy. But for the money, you not only get a capable note-taking tablet, but you also get one of the best all-around tablets on the market. As with other general-use tablets, the Apple Pencil 2 and Magic Keyboard are extra-cost add-ons, but they’re worth considering too if you want more of an all-in-one computer experience.

A small, black E Ink tablet with page turn buttons.

Kobo Sage

4. Best compact note-taking tablet

Small and capable

$256 $270 Save $14

The Rakuten Kobo Sage is a compact eReader that can also serve as a note-taking tablet. It has an 8-inch E Ink screen, and it supports the same stylus as on the larger Kobo Elipsa 2E.


  • Can write directly on book pages
  • Non-reflective display with side light and color temperature adjustments
  • Integrated OverDrive access for reading library books
  • Budget-friendly

  • Only accesses Kobo eBookstore
  • Stylus costs extra

The Rakuten Kobo Sage is more of a digital notepad than a notebook. It’s the largest of the Kobo eReaders, with an 8-inch E Ink display and two physical page turn buttons that make it convenient to hold one-handed.


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But the Kobo Sage is more than an eReader. Like the Kobo Sage’s slightly larger sibling, the Kobo Elipsa 2E, its software supports stylus input from an optional pen. The Kobo Sage’s note-taking works the same as on the Elipsa 2E, in that you start with a blank page and can change it to one of a handful of templates. You can also import PDFs and other documents to add annotations, and annotate book pages directly.

The Kobo eBookstore doesn’t have the traction or variety of Amazon’s Kindle, but it is a strong alternative. The Kobo Sage, like all Kobo eReaders, makes it especially simple to access digital ebooks from your public library via its built-in OverDrive support. Its flexible note-taking is great for jotting down thoughts throughout your day, making this a good choice if you’re not committed to Amazon’s ecosystem.

A gray-green Android tablet with thin bezels.

OnePlus Pad

5. Best Android note-taking tablet

Equipped with the perfect aspect ratio

$430 $480 Save $50

The OnePlus Pad strikes an excellent balance between price and performance. It has a vibrant color display with an uncommon 7:5 aspect ratio, which makes the tablet feel more portable than competing models.


  • Excellent display and speakers
  • Fantastic battery life
  • Good performance
  • Sharp, fast display that’s great for gaming

  • Keyboard case and stylus cost extra
  • Lacks charger

The OnePlus Pad is the first tablet from this mobile-focused company, and it delivers with its compelling mix of features and performance. The tablet weighs 553g, making it a bit hefty for one-handed use as a writing tablet. Nonetheless, it feels very balanced in hand, possibly owing to the unusually square aspect ratio of the 11.6-inch LCD screen.


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Text appears sharp and colors look vibrant, unsurprising given the display’s 2800 x 2000-pixel resolution. The display has a fast 144Hz refresh rate, making it a good choice for gaming, too. The tablet runs OnePlus’ own interface, but it is fully compatible with Google Play Store and Google services. As a general-use tablet, the OnePlus Pad can serve many productivity and entertainment needs.

When you add on the optional OnePlus Stylo pen, you can use the OnePlus Pad for taking notes. The stylus has 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, and it works well with the OnePlus Notes app. If you can get the stylus on sale, this combo is one of the most reasonably priced options for an Android tablet with a note-taking stylus.

A tablet with a stylus, and a kickstand and keyboard attachment.

Amazon Fire Max 11

6. Best Amazon ecosystem note-taking tablet

A thin, stylus-compatible Fire tablet

$160 $230 Save $70

The Amazon Fire Max 11 is the first Fire tablet with a competitively thin, stylish design. It’s also the first Fire tablet that has a stylus option, so you can handwrite notes and sketch with ease.


  • Low cost for a tablet
  • Full support for Amazon services and Appstore
  • Good sound
  • Pressure-sensitive stylus support

  • Keyboard case and stylus cost extra
  • Can’t run Google Play Store apps and Google services

The thin Amazon Fire Max 11 tablet is Amazon’s first attempt at a grown-up tablet that doesn’t come with a plastic, candy-colored chassis. This, plus an aluminum body and reinforced glass covering its display, helps the tablet look and feel like its worth more than its bargain price. The Fire Max 11 also has a 16:9 aspect ratio display with 2,000 x 1,200 pixels. That means it’s not as sharp as, say, an Apple iPad, but it’s still high-resolution enough to produce pleasing images on its 11-inch LCD.


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The Fire Max 11 has a microSD card slot, so you can easily expand its 64GB of storage. It also has conveniences like a fingerprint reader built in to the power button, which makes it easy to reliably unlock the tablet. As with all Amazon tablets, the Fire Max 11 runs Amazon’s FireOS operating system, and it only works with the Amazon Appstore. Still, there are plenty of apps for entertainment and productivity, including a free trial of Microsoft 365.

The interface is straightforward, making it easy to consume and discover Amazon’s music, videos, and books. You’ll also love being able to have a split screen view for two apps and how responsive the USI 2.0-compatible stylus with 4096 pressure sensitivity is for writing and sketching on screen. This tablet is a great choice for students and professionals who want an affordable note-taking tablet and don’t need full Google Play access.

A color E Ink tablet with a square camera on the back and a pen magnetically attached to its side.

Onyx Boox Tab Ultra C

7. Best color note-taking tablet

This option adds a little color to your notes

The Onyx Boox Tab Ultra C is an outlier among note-taking tablets. It’s one of the rare tablets with a color E Ink display, and it also runs Android apps.


  • Color E Ink screen enlivens documents
  • Non-reflective display with side lights
  • Can manipulate and move handwritten elements

  • Sluggish performance
  • Colors look washed out and pixilated
  • Expensive

The Onyx Boox Tab Ultra C stands out for its color E Ink display. Where most electrophoretic displays are monochrome, the Boox Tab Ultra can display colors at 150ppi. That means colors look muted and grainy, like a color photo in a newspaper. But even if it’s dull, it still adds a splash of life that differentiates this note-taking tablet from other E Ink competitors.

Another notable distinction: this model runs on Android and supports the Google Play Store. That means you can download apps and access any eBookstore, and use Google apps and services, too. It has a roomy 10.3-inch glare-free screen, and it comes with a stylus that feels good in hand. Creating notes is front and center and easy to accomplish, but that’s about all that’s clear about the interface. The stylus is responsive with the included Notepad app and its over 40 templates — and you can add your template by uploading a PNG or PDF file. Overall, however, the performance can be a bit sluggish, and some apps and most videos don’t look as crisp as they may on other Android tablets.

However, you’re not buying this tablet for its gaming and entertainment abilities. The color comes in handy for looking at PDFs or even book illustrations, in say, the Amazon Kindle app. Plus, you get this splash of color on a display that’s easy on the eyes. Just note that the screen and the wider app compatibility come at a high price.

A gray E Ink tablet with a thick bottom bezel and a stylus on the side.

Onyx Boox Tab X

8. Best large-screen note-taking tablet

Large screen to display all the small details

The Onyx Boox Tab X has the largest canvas of any E Ink tablet. The Tab X has a roomy 13.3-inch monochrome E Ink display that’s easy on the eyes. And like other models from the company, it runs Android and supports Google Play apps.


  • Roomy display
  • Runs Android apps
  • Large space for writing and drawing

  • Display is awkward to carry around
  • Expensive
  • Confusing interface

The biggest draw for this tablet is the large 13.3-inch A4 screen. Bigger is better when you need the space for complex sketches or taking notes longhand. The screen also comes in handy if you want to read text at a larger size. As with the Boox Tab Ultra C, the Tab X has multiple interface launchers, so you can choose how you prefer to use the tablet.


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The dedicated note-taking app might lack the finesse of others on the market, but it’s also packed with features and capabilities, such as inserting audio recordings into your handwritten document. I really liked this latter part; it makes it easy to match my notations with the original content. However, since the tablet lacks a camera, I also couldn’t directly scan in and annotate the physical documents and photos I already have.

Like the other tablets in Onyx’s lineup, this model runs Android 11, and it supports Android apps — which means I could download e-readers from competing eBookstores and read my book collections all on one device. I could also download other apps, which makes this E Ink tablet more functional than simply an e-reader with a single bookstore on board. It has a large 6300mAh battery, which delivers weeks of use without a charge. Even with its large battery, the Tab X is thin: It stands just 6.8mm high, and it weighs 560g, which makes it easy to throw in your bag alongside a laptop.

A horizontal silver tablet with a kickstand and a stylus floating in front of it.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 (Wi-Fi)

9. Best 2-in-1 note-taking tablet

Trade off taking both written and typed notes

$800 $1100 Save $300

The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 combines unique design points like a built-in kickstand with a crisp display that supports both touch and stylus input. And since it’s a Windows 11 PC running on a 12th-generation Intel Core processor, this tablet is a laptop replacement, too.


  • Full Windows PC in a tablet form
  • Plenty of power
  • Gorgeous display

  • Expensive
  • Heavier and thicker than rivals
  • Stylus and keyboard cost extra

The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 packs a Windows 11 PC into a high-resolution, freestanding display. The 13.3-inch screen carries 2,880 x 1,920 pixels, making it well-suited for everything from gaming to precise content creation. At nearly two pounds, this tablet has the heft that reflects its robust components.


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The Surface Pro gets equipped with 12-gen Intel Core hardware to give you more power on the move.

The tablet’s specs are modest for a PC, but still more powerful than most other note-taking tablets on this list. The baseline configuration priced here has 8GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD, and an Intel Core i5 processor; higher-spec’d versions with more RAM and storage and a better processor are options, albeit at higher prices. It even has a Thunderbolt 4 port, handy for use with high-speed storage peripherals. You can run the full gamut of PC and web apps and services just as you would on your laptop.

The Surface Pro 9 works with Microsoft’s optional stylus for handwriting notes and drawing in professional applications. The stylus is a great addition to note-taking apps like Microsoft OneNote and complex creative apps like Corel Paint or Adobe Illustrator.

At one time, you needed to spend top dollar to get a tablet that supported a stylus. But now you have a range of choices. Your first consideration is the reason you want a note-taking tablet. If the only thing you plan to do with your device is write notes, and you don’t want the distractions that come with apps and ebooks, then the reMarkable 2 is the top note-taking pick, in part because it is laser-focused on one task — using a stylus to write digital notes — and it does this task very well. It has a slew of useful templates, ranging from a blank page to storyboards and various music writing templates. The variety and range of templates are a real plus, since they make it easy to get started on creative and professional projects.

Two silver and gray E Ink tablets propped up next to each other.

reMarkable 2

Editor’s Choice

The Kindle Scribe might be Amazon’s most expensive Kindle, but it makes for a highly affordable note-taking tablet. It’s stylus and notebook tool offer a satisfying note-taking experience and, on the whole, it gives you good bang for your buck, since it’s a great eReader on top of being a good writing tool. If you’re looking for something more premium, and a whole lote more capable, it’s hard to beat the 11-inch Apple iPad Pro (4th Generation). You lose some of the focus of more traditional E Ink tablets, but you get an all-around more powerful and flexible computer, that’s great at taking notes with an Apple Pencil.

How did I choose the best note-taking tablets?

Both myself and the Pocket-lint team have extensive hands-on experience testing and using these note-taking tablets for work and creativity. As we tested, we considered the various use-cases for each device, along with display quality, writing feel, the reflectivity of their screens, and their software. Additionally, we tested to see how other factors, such as battery life and ports, played into the overall aesthetic and practical experience of using each tablet.

Is getting a note-taking tablet for school worth it?

There are many benefits to handwriting over exclusively typing out notes, including improved recall of the things you write down and fewer distractions from having multiple browsers open. In fact, researchers in a 2021 study from Johns Hopkins University suggested that there’s a positive relationship between handwriting notes and learning skills. Ultimately, whatever gets your thoughts down faster should be your first pick, but there are real benefits to taking your time with a stylus.

Should I choose E Ink or invest in a color screen?

If you’re just interested in plain old handwritten notes, there’s really no reason to stray from the monochromatic joys of an E Ink tablet. Color screens, and particularly OLED and LCD ones, usually mean you’ll have easy access to more distractions. A color E Ink could be worth considering if you know you’ll want to read comics when you’re not jotting down thoughts, but until color E Ink displays improve, there are real trade-offs in resolution that could bother you.

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