Pen-enabled Tablets and Devices running Android Apps

 

Device Our Opinion Specs
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 (US)
Deutsche Version (DE)

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) great display with very high resolution
(+) high-end technical specs with a speedy experience

(o) S-Pen cannot be inserted into device

Form factor: 9.7″ feels like an organizer, very handy, but also still big enough to use for note-taking in meetings, lectures or on the go (e.g. in the plane on the train).

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Android Nougat
  • 2048 x 1536 pixels
  • 9.7 inches

Available models

  • WiFi-only Version
  • LTE + WiFi Version
Samsung Chromebook Plus (US)
Our Opinion

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) S-Pen can be inserted into device
(+) great display with very high resolution
(+) physical keyboard enables better text writing than usual tablets

Special: Chrome OS runs Android Apps now.
Form factor: 12.3″ is as big as a sheet of paper (approx. A4 / Letter). Very good for sketching – especially when two people are discussing things with one device in front of them. A bit heavier than the smaller tablets, but still totally ok to work on the go (e.g. in the plane on the train).

Specs

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Chrome OS (but it runs virtually every app your Android tablet does – either online or offline)
  • 2400 x 1600 pixels
  • 12.3 inches

Available models

  • XE513C24-K01US
Samsung Galaxy Tab A with S Pen 10.1″ (2016 Ed.) (US)
Our Opinion

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) S-Pen can be inserted into device
(+) good display with full-HD resolution

(o) computing power is moderate (mid-range tablet)
(o) build quality feels ok, but not high-end

Specs

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Android 6, Marshmallow
  • 1920 x 1200 pixels
  • 10.1 inches

Available models

  • SM-P580 (WiFi)
Device Our Opinion Specs
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Ed.) (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) S-Pen can be inserted into tablet
(+) fast and reliable device, even in 2017
(+) great display with very high resolution

(-) no more official Android-OS-Updates available

Form factor: 10.1″ a bit smaller than a normal sheet of paper, thus handy, but still big enough to use for note-taking in meetings, lectures or on the go

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Android 5, Lollipop
  • 2560 x 1600 pixels
  • 10.1 inches

Available models

  • SM-P600 (WiFi)
  • SM-P601 (3G & WiFi)
  • SM-P605 (LTE, 3G & WiFi)
  • SM-P607 (LTE, 3G & WiFi)
Huawei MediaPad M2 10.0 (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

Our Opinion

(+) fast and reliable device
(+) M-Pen has the same weight and size like a normal ballpen
(+) writing with the M-Pen feels nearly as good as with the S-Pen
(+) good display with full-HD resolution

(0) M-Pen works only with a battery
(0) sometimes the palm-rejection does not feel as reliable as with Samsung’s S-Pen

Form factor: 10.1″ a bit smaller than a normal sheet of paper, thus handy, but still big enough to use for note-taking in meetings, lectures or on the go.
Nice extra: a book cover with mount for M-Pen is shipped with the Premium-Version.

Specs

  • Stylus: M-Pen
  • Android 5, Lollipop
  • 1920 x 1200 pixels
  • 10.1 inches

Available models:

  • Premium Edition – look for 3GB RAM to be sure
  • (Standard Edition – has no Stylus and just 2GB RAM)
Samsung Galaxy Tab A 9.7 (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

Our Opinion

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) S-Pen can be inserted into tablet

(o) computing power is moderate (mid-range tablet)

(-) display has low resolution

Form factor: 9.7″ feels lika an organizer – especially with the book cover – very handy, but also still big enough to use for note-taking in meetings, lectures or on the go

Specs

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Android 5, Lollipop
  • 1024 x 768 pixels
  • 9.7 inches

Available models

  • SM-P550NZWADBT (Wi-Fi, white)
  • SM-P550NZKADBT (Wi-Fi, black)
  • Side note: there are more models available, but they do not include the S-Pen

Samsung Galaxy NotePro 12.2 (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

Our Opinion

(+) S-Pen has the best writing experience
(+) S-Pen works without battery
(+) S-Pen can be inserted into tablet
(+) fast and reliable device, even in 2017
(+) great display with very high resolution

(-) no more official Android-OS-Updates available

Form factor: 12.2″ is as big as a sheet of paper (approx. A4 / Letter). Very good for sketching – especially when two people are discussing things with one tablet in front of them. A bit heavier than the smaller devices, but still totally ok for us to work on the go (e.g. in the plane on the train).

Specs

  • Stylus: S-Pen
  • Android 5, Lollipop
  • 2560 x 1600 pixels
  • 12.2 inches

Available models

  • SM-P900 (WiFi)
  • SM-P905 (LTE, 3G & WiFi)
ASUS ZenPad 3S 10 (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

Our Opinion

(+) tablet is fast with excellent built quality
(+) good display with high resolution

(0) Z-Pen cannot be stored in the tablet
(0) Z-Pen requires a battery

(-) Z-Pen does not have an authentic writing experience
(-) Z-Pen has a hard tip, which makes loud noises when writing
(-) the battery of the Z-Pen seems to be discharged quite fast, even if you don’t use it

9.7″ feels like an organizer: very handy, but also still big enough to use for note-taking in meetings, lectures or on the go

Specs

Available models

  • Z500M-C1-GR (grey)
  • Z500M-C1-SL (silver)
ASUS ZenPad S 8.0 (US)
deutsche Version (DE)

Our Opinion

(+) tablet is fast and built quality is high
(+) good display with high resolution

(0) Z-Pen cannot be stored in the tablet
(0) Z-Pen requires a battery

(-) Z-Pen does not have an authentic writing experience
(-) Z-Pen has a hard tip, which makes loud noises when writing
(-) the battery of the Z-Pen seems to be discharged quite fast, even if you don’t use it

Form factor: 8.0″ feels lika a small organizer, very handy, good for personal note-taking on the go.

Specs

Available models

  • Z580CA-1A079A (32GB)
  • Z580CA-1A048A (64GB)

If you happen to know any further android pen-tablets let us know!

If you own one of the listed devices: go to our play store page and download the 14-day free trial of Mind-Objects Think Visual. It is the best support for visual thinking you can get: capture, structure and share your thoughts effortless – with no space restrictions!

Using the software is as intuitive as using pen and paper, with the advantage, that information can be restructured easy and be broadcasted via a projector. This saves time, enables better results and helps collaboration in meetings.

Mind-Objects Think Visual runs on any pen-enabled Android tablet (if you have a device without native pen support you can use Mind-Objects ThinkVisual Touch instead).

Having a Windows or iOS device? Stay updated – get the news when your favorite device is supported and subscribe to our mailing list: http://www.mind-objects.com/platform-request/

 

Why did we choose these devices for Mind-Objects?

  • The above devices can recognize the difference between stylus and finger (which gives us the chance to deliver a great workflow with high productivity)
  • In contrast to normal tablets, using the pen/stylus on these devices feels very similar to using a normal pen on paper (great for people using a tablet for the first time)

 

If you have any questions regarding the above devices or where to buy them – write us in the comments or .

Published by

Marius Brade

Marius Brade

Marius is a visual thinker and UX-professional. He did his PhD in the topic of "Visualization Methods for Interactive Gathering and Structuring of Information in the Context of Knowledge Modeling"

4 thoughts on “Pen-enabled Tablets and Devices running Android Apps”

  1. Hello, you can not imagine, how much I like this post. Found it on http://www.notebookcheck.com.
    I am currently not decided whether to buy
    – a mix of an ebook reader (waiting for the newer ink cart readers with 10 inch) and a bamboo slat
    – a Galaxy Tab S3 (to be released next month)
    – a Lenovo yoga book

    this page, dear sir, has been bookmarked!

    1. Thank you very much for the comment! I can’t say too much about ebook readers, didn’t try them yet. Currently I think the best combo is: Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) in combination with Microsoft Wireless Display Adapter V2 – of course using Mind-Objects. But I do think that the new Galaxy Tab S3 may be my new hero for productive use (e.g. in Brainstormings, Meetings, or just when I develop strategies..).
      Regarding the Lenovo yoga book: I decided not to include it in the list, because you can’t write directly on the screen using the pen. This indirect sketching does not feel nearly as natural as the direct method.

      What do you want to use your planned device for?

  2. Hi,
    thank you for your response.

    You wrote:
    “I decided not to include it in the list, because you can’t write directly on the screen using the pen”
    i think you can. check out: http://www.pcworld.com/article/3130751/hardware/lenovo-yoga-book-review-unique-touch-features-let-you-be-hands-on-creative.html
    The video on 0:33 (just to mention one video)

    “What do you want to use your planned device for?”
    I like to work and study with mobile devices, but still like the feel of pen and paper. Librarys usually do not have recent versions of the books i intent to work with and I do not want to fill my home with tons of paper books. thats why i prefer digital versions of texts.

    Book describes a solution of a task, like: Calculating the complexity of a function call
    Stuff that I do not see or understand in one simple go (or fear I did not understand too its full extend), I like to sit down and work with a pen and a surface to write on, to check my calculations. Thats why I would like a tablet with pen input for.

    Most promising would be the remarkable. If it stays true to its promises, that is. I usually use pdf books and most ebook devices feel clumsy when switching pages and the like. The remarkable promises to be ebook reader and sketch pad in one place. That would be awesome. But I fear it will fall short of my expectations.

    1. Thanks for the link! In this case I will have a look at the yoga book and include it in the list soon.
      The remarkable looks interesting indeed. I am curious what comes out of it.

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