In style with a stylus

Published: 02 December, 2012 09:33 IST | Nimish Dubey |

Styluses are back, thanks to devices such as the Samsung Galaxy Note and the LG Optimus Vu. If you're one of those who prefers scribbling with a stylus to typing on your tablet, here are some apps that will help you trod the written path with ease

PenSupremacy (Android)
Penultimate might be an awesome app but it is restricted to the iPad. For Android lovers, however, there is the very similar PenSupremacy. Again you have the ability to write on the screen just as you would on paper, Choose from ink colours and pen styles, import images and scribble on them and export results as a PDF. There is even an option to add audio notes. A slight problem is the lag that can sometimes take place if you are writing too long a piece, but all said and done, an excellent option for those wanting their slice of stylus action on Android.
Available FROM: Google Play
Price: Rs 82.69

WritePad (Android, iOS)
If you are in the mood to spend money, this app not only lets you scribble notes on a tablet just as you can on paper, but also comes with handwriting recognition as part of the deal. You can choose to either write on any part of the screen or if you so wish, in a smaller area. What makes the app special is its ability to decipher even cursive handwriting with ease. You can export your document as a PDF, print it, or even make posts to Facebook and Twitter from within the app itself. Not the cheapest option, but in terms of real productivity, one of the best.
Available from: Google Play, iTunes App Store
Price: Rs 553.87 (Android), Rs 220 (iOS)

Penultimate (iPad)
Considered by many to be the best app for those who prefer writing to typing, Penultimate brings a number of ink colours and papers to deliver an experience that is almost like writing on paper. You make notes in a variety of notebooks (yes, you can choose the kind of notebook you like), move pages around, and can import images, make notes on them in your handwriting, and even export the result as a PDF. Very neat, and in terms of ease of use, easily one of the best apps for stylus wielders. Small wonder that Evernote acquired it.
Available from: iTunes App Store
Price: Rs 55

SWYPE Beta (Android)
Yes, you read that right. Although SWYPE is best known for being a system where you enter words on a touchscreen by sliding your fingers across letters instead of tapping them, the latest avatar of SWYPE comes with support for handwriting. Just tap on the pencil icon on the SWYPE keyboard, and the onscreen keyboard will be replaced by a blank space where you can write away to your heart’s content. There’s a handy ‘back’ key too, saving you the need to memorise gestures for ‘erase.’ A bit basic for hardcore users, but more than ample for those needing nothing more than the odd scribble. The fact that you can always fall back to SWYPE’s excellent swipe-to-type keyboard is a huge bonus.
Available from:
Price: Free

Graffiti (Android)
This is for PDA veterans who used Palm products. Graffiti was Palm’s version of handwriting recognition software, which used to revolve around preset icons for each letter of the alphabet. The trick generally was to write a letter without lifting your stylus — an inverted ‘v’ for instance, represents an ‘a’. It still works just fine, although, if you have never used a Palm device, you might find the notion of having to memorise a whole set of icons for writing the alphabet irritating. That said, it does come in a free avatar, which is a rarity at this level.
Available from: Google Play
Price: Free 

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