Writing on a digital display, like on the iPad Pro or Microsoft Surface Studio, isn’t for everyone. Analog loyalists will say that it doesn’t have the same feel as using an old-fashioned pen and paper. There’s also the issue of needing a stylus pen. Fortunately, there are devices that can easily transfer notes handwritten on physical paper over to digital. These are your best options.
Wacom Bamboo Slate $130
Best for Illustrators:The Bamboo Slate is a clipboard-like tablet that works with any notebook or piece of paper, but you do have to use the ink pen that comes with the device. Drawings and notes can be then uploaded to your iOS or Android device using Wacom’s Inkspace app. It’s very accurate, albeit fairly expensive, and probably best for illustrators, designers and so forth.
Rocketbook Wave Smart Notebook $27
Best Bang for Your Buck: The Rocketbook is inexpensive and super simple. Write or draw anything in it, then take a photo with your smartphone in Rocketbook’s Android- and iOS-compatible app. Your notes or sketches can be uploaded to Google Docs, Dropbox, iCloud, Evernote or email. The whole process takes seconds, and if you write on all of the pages, just nuke the notebook in the microwave; afterwards, you’ll have a blank notebook ready to used again.
Moleskine Smart Writing Set $199
Best in Class: The magic of this smart writing set is its pen, which has a built-in hidden camera to track penmanship. The writing set also uses a paper notebook (for which Moleskin is best known) and a companion app. This app can turn your written notes into text, and you can also see yourself writting those notes in real time via app. Meta.