GoodNotes vs Notability: Features Face to Face [Updated 2023]

Whether to use GoodNotes or Notability is important for any student, but it becomes even more difficult to choose between two top-notch apps. One reason this decision may seem daunting is that each program offers its unique set-up with features tailored specifically towards the type of notes taking style that would suit your needs best! We’ve chosen sides in what many consider just another battle between Apple alternatives -a classic struggle between productivity and creativity (or maybe design).

The best note-taking apps for iPads are GoodNotes and Notability. These two programs have been around since 2010, with NotAPlot’s debut in early 2011, followed shortly after by another popular app called “Good Notes.” The software has continued to receive updates over the years, which include adding new features or adapting them when necessary due to changes made on newer models of tablets like the iPad mini announced this past November.

GoodNotes vs Notability

Although the table has covered most of the distinctions between these two note-taking programs, let’s dig deeper.

User interface

The simplest and most intuitive notes app out there is Notability. With a straightforward design, it’s easy to get lost in the interface with all its various options–but don’t worry! Creative people can still find their favorite features within this minimalist program by using templates or custom paper styles that have been added through recent updates from GoodNotes (which we appreciate).


When designing GoodNotes 5, they were mindful of how different topics can have many subsets. This is because each folder in the system gets an infinite number of child folders, giving you vast amounts of space for organizing your notes and bookmarks without any limitations or megabytes limits on Notability. The bookmarking feature also helps make collaboration easier between colleagues/ classmates while seeing what changes others make along their reading journey — all within seconds thanks to Real Time Syncing capabilities within this app (you don’t need WiFi).

Note-taking/Writing experience

GoodNotes and Notability are both great note-taking apps for Android. While the experience of using them is different, we found that both have adequate palm rejection features as well as intuitive UIs, which make it easy to find what tool you need at your fingertips without having too many options open up in front of researching which one works best beforehand since they’re equally good.


The Notability app offers many tools to make note-taking more creative and flexible. The GoodNotes 5 platform has an extensive list of features you can use for the notes to take on any imaginable form, from drawings or sketches up through composition with strings sectionalized.


Notes were always meant to be captured quickly, but never before have they been able to do so with such precision. The ballpoint pen tool on GoodNotes 5 is similar in many ways to Notability’s offering – small, medium, and large sizes are available at the top of your screen (with an option for scrolling down when needed). However, we found that their pressure-sensitive “pen” was much more useful than what you’ll find within this program, which allows users not just some normal ink drawings or writing thoughts out loud while taking care of how detailed each letter might look.


The GoodNotes 5 eraser reverts to the pen automatically after you’re done erasing, which is something Notability requires an extra touch for. However, both products offer 12 different size options that can be changed with one click on their app icon, making them equally useful.

Functionality and multi-tasking

Though they both have features we wish the other had, it’s a tie regarding functionality. We feel confident in saying GoodNotes 5 offers more than enough power for any user looking at taking notes on their computer or tablet device while maintaining an elegant look alongside its versatility, which includes different tabs and instances if needed without sacrificing style.

Related: Remarkable 2 vs Ipad pro: Features Face to Face

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