Replacing My Paper Notebook

Replacing My Paper Notebook

My work kit when I travel includes my smartphone, a lightweight notebook computer and a small tablet. At the moment that kit is very Apple-centric with an iPhone 7 Plus, iPad mini 2 and an iPad Pro. But the iPad mini isn’t fitting in all that well. So I’m looking for some advice on replacing it and I figure the Lifehacker army will have some answers for me.

As well as writing, a big chunk of my work involves video interviews, conference facilitation and moderating forums and industry panels. An 8-inch tablet is great for that as it’s small enough to fit on most podiums or for me to hold without it being too conspicuous.

Rumours of Apple’s iPad product announcement suggested that an iPad Mini Pro might come to pass and that would have solved the challenge I have.

I want to replace the paper notebook I carry for scrawling notes. So, my very simple wish list is:

  • 8-inch display
  • Built-in cellular comms
  • Pen input that works with Evernote and/or OneNote

I could achieve this by either finding a decent pen/stylus for the iPad I have but all the ones I’ve tried have a very chunky tip that doesn’t have anything like a pen-on-paper feel.

There are some Android devices out there that are close but the displays are either more like 6-inches or 10-inches. The in-between size is a big deal for me.

So, what can you suggest? Does what I want exist? What are you using that fits the bill? I’m not wed to any particular operating system so I’m happy to try almost anything with the only proviso being I need easy syncing to my other devices that include macOS, Windows 10 and iOS.


    • Not gonna lie, even though it’s a few years old I do miss my old one sometimes. Was the perfect size for holding in one hand and writing with the other.

      Pretty sure there’s a Galaxy Tab A 8.0 with an S-pen as well.

      • I have the 10.0, it got panned by professional critics and loved on the sites where users review it. I love it. It has lower resolution which was the main issue but for uni, marking up pdfs and such, it is perfect.

  • I would highly recomend the iPad Pro 12′ and the Apple Pencil combo – go to the Apple shop and try it out using them – I have it and can say its brilliant

  • 1. Pen from Paper by 53. Works with Paper and One Note at a minimum, and you can keep your iPad.
    2. Moleskin Evernote notebook, plus Evernote & your phone. Take a picture after the meeting – means you can leave the mini iPad out of the setup, & use your phone to take the pic.
    3. 3rd party keyboard for the mini iPad (what I use with an iPad Air2)

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