10 best stylus apps and S Pen apps for Android
Eric Zeman / Android Authority
The stylus has a cult following on Android. There aren’t a ton of people that use them, but the ones that do love it. Samsung Note devices famously come with S Pen and devices like the Nvidia Shield Tablet have come with them as well. Luckily, there are plenty of apps that can take advantage of the stylus. The stylus is a little bit down compared to a few years ago. The development of stylus apps is at a bit of a standstill right now. Still, there are some great apps out there for them. Let’s take a look at the best stylus apps and S Pen apps for Android.
We’d also like to give an honorable mention to EasyCanvas (Google Play). The app turns your Android tablet into a Wacom-style tablet for use with desktop drawing apps like Photoshop and others. It’s rather new, but it’s also very promising.
The best stylus apps and S Pen apps for Android
Price: Free / Up to $52.99 per month
Adobe apps make for excellent stylus apps. Some of the apps include Adobe Photoshop Sketch, Illustrator Draw, and other creative apps. There is also a document scanner, Adobe Fill & Sign, and other business-oriented apps. These are all excellent apps for stylus and S Pen users. They get frequent updates, work fairly well, and most of each app is free. They also integrate well with their desktop counterparts. Thus, if you use Adobe Lightroom on mobile, you can easily make it work with the desktop version as well. However, that does require an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription.
Price: Free with in-app purchases
AutoDesk is a popular developer of various creative and professional apps. They work well with a stylus as well. The Sketchbook and AutoCAD series of apps are both very useful and powerful applications for designers and artists. The Sketchbook series of apps have also done well on mobile. All these apps include advanced tools, professional-level appeal, and even some fun quirky features. For instance, AutoCAD 360 lets you orient yourself around your drawing using your GPS. The Autodesk collection has well over a dozen apps for you to check out. We have all of Autodesk’s apps linked below at the button. Sketchbook is kind of its own thing now so you can find it by searching in the Play Store.
Price: Free / Up to $5.65
Bamboo Paper is a drawing and note-taking app from Wacom, a leader in the stylus market. The app turns your phone or tablet into a notebook. You can create various pages, organize them into folders, and write or draw whatever you want. You can also create custom color palettes for your drawings, add photos to your notes, and there is support for Inkspace Plus features if you use them.
The app is far from perfect. There seems to be the occasional bug, especially when loading saved images. Wacom hasn’t updated the app since 2021 at the time of this writing. Here’s hoping they keep up with it because it’s actually quite nice when it works.
Price: Free / $2-$40 per month
DocuSign is a popular app for PDF forms. It lets you sign forms and send them where they need to go. The app complies with the eSign Act so documents are legally binding. You can also send unsigned docs to other people to have them sign the paperwork. You can use PDF, Word, Excel, and even some types of images as your medium. There are well over half a dozen subscription options. They range from $2 per month to $40 per month. It’s easy to find details about them on DocuSign’s official website.
Gboard is one of several good keyboard apps. This one also includes a handwriting input option. You can use your stylus and write your messages. The app then converts it to text and inputs it wherever needed. It works in notes, text messages, search, and wherever else you can type. It’s a bit of an old-school, niche function, but some people enjoy the act of writing out missives. It’s a simple, elegant solution that fans of the stylus might appreciate.
Price: Free / Up to $2.99
INKredible is a drawing and writing app. It tries to focus on a no distraction experience. Most of its features are under-the-hood items that include palm and wrist rejection, a smooth experience, and they attempt to make the experience as realistic as possible. They do an okay job of it. Aside from the under-the-hood stuff, there isn’t much to the app and we’re pretty sure that’s the point. If you need a basic writing or drawing app without a ton of bric-a-brac, this is a good way to go. There is a free app with in-app purchases or a full pro version if you prefer. You can take your pick, they’re all great stylus apps.
Price: Free / Up to $4.99
LectureNotes was once, is currently, and likely always will be the hallmark of a great stylus app. It offers a bunch of features including image importing, stylus support, notebook export (for sharing) to your device, Evernote, and OneNote, advanced organization features, and more. If you install LectureVideos and LectureRecordings, you can also insert video and audio recordings into your notebooks right alongside your notes. It’s extremely powerful and popular. There are also additional plugins that cost extra money. They add more functionality.
MyScript Calculator 2
MyScript Calculator 2 is probably the best calculator for stylus and S-Pen fans. You literally write out the equation you want to solve. The app uses OCR to translate it into the equation and then solves it for you. This is mostly good for middle school, high school, and university-level math. However, once you get above trigonometry, the app starts to struggle a lot. Frankly, it’s just fun to watch this app work. You can even copy and paste the solutions (and problems) from this app to other apps without any problems. It’s a shoo-in for an app like this and $2.99 is perfectly reasonable. There are no additional ads or in-app purchases.
RoughAnimator is an animation app that lets you animate actual moving pictures. The way it works is you draw something, then add a frame and change things up a bit. Once you’re done, you have a little animated movie. This is one of only a few apps capable of doing this. It has specific features for stylus users and direct S Pen support. You can export animation to QuickTime video, GIF, or an image sequence as well. It’s a surprisingly good app despite its lack of popularity. It’s one of those stylus apps that are worth a shot.
Samsung S-Pen apps
When it comes to S Pen support, there isn’t a company out there that does it better than its creator, Samsung. Every note device comes packed with a variety of apps that make full use of S Pen’s features and integration. There are apps for note-taking, GIF making, and other productivity and creativity-based apps that let you play with the S Pen as it was intended. We recommend that before replacing any of them, we recommend you take a good look at them. Most of their features are either difficult to find in the open market or downright impossible. They are just excellent stylus apps.
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