I read the technology reviews site The Wirecutter, which tests tech hardware and software and advises on what’s the best and why. (I highly recommend you subscribe to their weekly email newsletter; they also have a related site The Sweethome for household items.)
Last week they published an article on “The Best iPad Stylus for Note-Taking” — their pick is the Pogo Stylus, for $20.
So I purchased one at B&H Photo and am testing it out.
My best choice for a stylus up until now has been the Adonit Jot pen, which starts at $20. I like the Adonit Jot because the little plastic disk on the nib makes it easier to do precision writing and drawing, on the exact spot you want. However that little plastic piece is easy to lose (as is the cap), plus it doesn’t feel completely natural to use a pen with a plastic disk on the end.
The Pogo is inexpensive, yet it feels sturdy and easy to hold–and no pieces to lose. The rubber tip doesn’t let you get quite as thin and precise a line as the Jot but it does do almost as well for note-taking. This is something I could throw in my bag without fear of destroying it, and it feels much more natural to write with. Plus it’s also great for tapping buttons and navigating around. So I’d say for ease of use, it wins over the Adonit Jot.
My 2 favorite note-taking apps:
- Notability, $3: Best for basic note-taking plus has a microphone feature to do an audio recording of a meeting or lecture as well.
- 7NotesHDPremium, $8: Its main advantage is that it converts handwriting to text, either as you type or after the fact. (Only the premium version does this.) And it does it very well; it didn’t make one mistake with my handwriting. Pretty amazing.
My conclusion is that unfortunately it’s still much faster to take notes with a pen and paper than it is with a stylus on the iPad…and speed is what’s most important, when I’m in a meeting and don’t want to miss anything. I’m going to try the Pogo and iPad combo at an upcoming event, to get some real-world experience.