GoodNotes is the best note taking app for iPad on Apple’s iOS platform. Its excellent ink stroke simulation algorithm, supporting for pressure sensitivity, and smooth writing feeling, combined with Apple Pencil makes its feel and reputation stand out among similar applications. So, it also occupies the forefront of the efficiency APP paid rankings all year round.

The official website to download GoodNotes:


GoodNotes 5 for iOS costs $7.99. If you have purchased GoodNotes 4 at the original price, you can also upgrade to the latest GoodNotes 5 for free. If you bought it at a preferential price before, you only need to make up the difference to upgrade.

Button Purpose

Page management button: You can click the page which you want to view and edit to jump quickly. In addition, you can manage pages: add pages, copy pages, and delete unwanted pages. The page order can also be adjusted.

New button: Click to add items, including pictures, text boxes, bookmarks, etc.

Graphic button: This is a unique feature of iPad note taking app. After clicking it to write, all handwriting will automatically become regular handwriting: For example, the handicapped party drew a non-smooth circle. After clicking this button, any circle drawn at random will automatically become a regular and smooth circle.

For another example, after clicking this button, drawing a line at random will automatically become a straight line. Partners who are looking for neat and clean handwriting can use this feature frequently.

Enlarge writing button: Click to enlarge writing in any position. The most common usage scenario is file signing. Click this button to write your signature clearly in the zoom-in box, and it will automatically zoom out after completion.

Eraser: You can adjust the erase size of the eraser.

Pen tool: First, you can choose pen brushes of different thicknesses. Secondly, as the best note taking app for iPad it is worth mentioning that the color of the pen can be customized and increased, and the input of color codes is supported.

For example, if I want to add a matcha color, just enter the corresponding color value of the matcha color in the color editing state: #B7BA6B to add this color to the palette, which is very convenient.

Highlighter tool: Similar to the pen tool, the thickness of the brush is optional, and the color can also be customized to increase. The highlighter is mainly used for emphasis.

Lock set tool: After clicking the button, you can select pictures and text on the note to frame selection and copy, adjust the size and position of the selected items, and use it with less effort.

Pen button: After clicking the button, the stylus will no longer function as a brush. There is a more common application scenario: some notes have hyperlinks to support page jumps.

If you don’t click the corresponding jump label in the pen mode, the page jump will not be executed, because the software recognizes that the stylus will perform the operation of the brush if you click on the screen. That is, you can see that the pen point is left on the screen.

However, after selecting the pen-free mode, click the jump label to jump to the corresponding page, and then write in the pen-free mode. Be sure to remember the pen mode when using notes with page jumps.


1. GoodNotes handwritten notes supports OCR to search handwritten text, you can easily find notes. We all know that paper and pen writing have some inherent defects, such as inability to copy and search, and inability to carry. To this end, GoodNotes has brought us a very good “black technology”, through OCR text recognition technology to “search your handwritten notes”!

Even if your writing is scribbled, GoodNotes can maintain a high recognition rate, and it is very convenient to search and find the document notes you have done in the past.

When organizing, reviewing, and finding information on a daily basis, this feature of GoodNotes can make your handwritten notes easily accessible. It perfectly solves the defect that paper and pen handwriting cannot be searched. It is simply the best note taking app for iPad!

2. The catalog outline function of GoodNotes is updated by GoodNotes5, which not only makes reading pdf more convenient, but also allows you to freely edit the outline and add your own handwritten notes or a certain page in the pdf as an outline.

If the pdf’s own outline has a graded heading, GoodNotes will recognize it and have a graded heading. For self-written notes, GoodNotes does not support setting a graded title.

3. GoodNotes pens can be selected from pens, ballpoint pens, highlighters and brushes. The pressure sensitivity of the brushes is more sensitive, which is suitable for drawing in notes or making handbooks. Click the icon to change the style of the pen.

As for the thickness and color, you can choose the three commonly used ones and place them directly in the navigation bar, so that the switching is more convenient. The color selection is also preset + custom, and the custom is directly placed on the same page of the preset, eliminating the need for sliding left and right to switch pages to change the color.

The thickness is adjusted by sliding to change the value. If the commonly used thickness is greater than 3, it will be more troublesome.

4. As the iPad note taking app, because GoodNotes is a notebook style, there are more options for notebook covers. There are dozens of cover options. The choice of paper templates is also relatively rich. In addition, the orientation of the paper can be horizontal or vertical, and different sizes (such as GoodNotes standard, A4, A7, etc.) can be selected, but the colors are only white and yellow.

5. GoodNotes can be set to automatically switch back to the pen state after the eraser has been erased once. As long as it is not necessary to erase multiple places continuously, it will be more convenient.

In addition, GoodNotes can choose whether the eraser is to erase the entire stroke of the pen, or to erase where it is erased. The best thing is that if you draw a highlighter mark on your handwritten notes, GoodNotes can be set to erase only the highlighter traces and keep the handwriting. This is really commendable.

6. GoodNotes can open multiple notes at the same time, just like switching between multiple URL pages in a browser.

To Sum Up

Whether for office or study, as the best note taking app for iPad, GoodNotes handwritten notes can meet your needs for reading, taking notes, and writing annotations. With Apple Pencil, your iPad can instantly become a note-taking tool!

Tags : best note taking app for iPadGoodNotes handwritten notesiPad note taking app

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