Laptops optimize

Turn your tablet into a pad of paper with Antipaper Notes

One of Jack Wallen's favorite apps for taking notes on his Android tablet is Antipaper Notes. Here's a closer look at this useful tool.

I use my tablet for a lot of different tasks. I've wanted to use it for taking quick notes, but the tablet keyboard isn't always very efficient. It's much more efficient to use your finger (or a stylus) with the help of a handwriting app, but which is the best app for mobile business users? One of my favorite in this category is Antipaper Notes.

The Antipaper Notes app is a comprehensive note-taking tool. With this app, you can also:

  • Add as many notebooks as you need
  • Backup your notes
  • Zoom in a page for more precise writing
  • Choose among colorful pens and highlighters
  • Change paper pattern while writing (even to music staff paper)
  • Email your hand-written pages in either jpg or png format

Antipaper Notes works with your finger, but writing with your finger results in less control and, therefore, larger handwriting. Just remember, if this app sends you into fits of wanting to purchase a stylus, make sure you find one for your particular tablet. For example, my Galaxy tablet can use the capacitive styluses from rooCASE.

Now, let's take a look at how Antipaper Notes is installed and how it works.

The installation, as you would expect, is incredibly simple. Open up Google Play (formerly the Android Market), do a search for Antipaper Notes, and install. Be careful to install the proper version, as there are two version:

  • Antipaper Notes
  • Antipaper Notes HD

The version to install is AntiPaper Notes (not the HD version). Once it's installed, you should find the icon for the app on the desktop. If not, open up the App Drawer and fire up the tool. You are now ready to begin taking notes.

When you first open Antipaper Notes, you can walk through an easy demo. You'll notice that you can write on the demo, but you can't save. Once the demo is over, you'll be on the Antipaper Notes home page (Figure A). Figure A

The Antipaper Notes home page, as seen on the Verizon-branded Galaxy Tablet.

You can begin by either creating a new notebook or a new folder. To create a new notebook, follow these steps:

  1. Open Antipaper Notes
  2. Tap the New notebook icon in the upper left
  3. Give the New notebook a name
  4. Either tap Create or Create And Open
When a notebook is open, you can begin taking notes. The interface is fairly simple (Figure B) and needs little explanation. Figure B

The only beef I have with the interface is the layout of the paper doesn't jive with the menus and toolbars unless you pivot the paper.
You can pivot the notebook page so that the lines of the paper match up with the toolbars by pressing the pivot icon in the upper-left corner. When you do this, however, the page becomes rather small (Figure C). Figure C

Once the app is rotated, you'll be struggling to write notes with your finger due to the size.
Regardless of the position (horizontal or landscape), the zoom tool makes it easier to control the drawing, so you don't have to write overly-large letters. To zoom in, tap the zoom icon. This will split your screen (Figure D) into an overview and a drawing area. In portrait mode, the right side is the drawing area -- and in landscape mode, the bottom is the drawing area. Figure D

In the Pro version for $5.46 (USD), there are multiple levels of zoom (as opposed to just one).

Menus

When you longpress a notebook, a new menu appears with the following options:

  • Send
  • Copy
  • Move
  • Rename
  • Delete

When you longpress a folder, a menu appears with the following options:

  • Move
  • Rename
  • Delete

The main menu (found in the upper-right corner of the Antipaper Notes home screen) is primarily for connecting with the app creators. It only offers the following options:

  • Website
  • Email us
  • Rate
When you're editing a notebook, there's also a menu icon in the top left that reveals an overlay (Figure E) with a number of options. This is where you can change the paper pattern (from lined, to graph, to scale, to plain) and much more. Figure E

The notebook menu is the most useful menu in the application.

Antipaper Notes is one of my favorite note-taking apps for the Android tablet. I'm sure that you'll find it handy for taking fast notes as well -- especially if you have a stylus, which allows you to have much better control over your handwriting, and thus more notes per page.

About

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website getjackd.net.

3 comments
Nashphil
Nashphil

OneNote Mobile rewritten, without the Skydrive, webapps and years of experience.

Worth2Cents
Worth2Cents

How does this product fare with this seemingly common issue? I would like to use my tablet as a notepad, but I, too, tend to write with my hand resting and sliding on the paper. And can I mark up other documents, like Word, PDFs, or PowerPoints? (I'm probably asking too much.)

Den2010
Den2010

Jack, you failed to mention that the version available at Google Play is very limited in its note-taking abilities. To unlock the really useful features, one must buy the Pro version. Failing to mention the (significant) limitations of the free version, and the price to get everything working, is becoming more and more common in reviews of Android apps. It galls me to not have that information when making a decision to try something out. In the future, please mention if the app you're reviewing is a fully functional one if free, or if it's limited in some way. Also, and I realize that the price may change, please give the price at the time of writing of any "Pro" upgrade necessary to get the app in question working completely. I haven't decided yet whether I'm going to keep Antipaper or not. The limitations that go with the free version aren't making me lean toward keeping it, but time will tell.