Lenovo Good Paper overview: A strong e-ink pill spoiled by the associated fee

Regardless of an infatuation with most issues e-ink, I’ve resisted the world of e-ink notebooks. I’m one of many few who as soon as owned a Kindle DX, that vast e-reader that existed for only some years earlier than being retired.

In the previous few years, we’ve seen Amazon get into e-ink scribes, whereas startups like ReMarkable have carved out their very own area of interest with succesful {hardware} for an inexpensive value. Lenovo, having dabbled with e-ink on units just like the Yoga Book, has determined to affix the fray with the Smart Paper.

Whereas the product hasn’t but launched within the US (and is now curiously absent from Lenovo’s retail web site), the Good Paper is now accessible in different international locations, together with the UK.

At round $400 (or £500 within the UK) it is costly. That is greater than the Kindle Scribe – and rather more than the ReMarkable 2. I attempted utilizing the Good Paper as a substitute of a typical paper notepad, particularly intrigued to see if the offline handwriting recognition would create a seamless method of sharing notes throughout to my laptop computer or telephone. There are sufficient causes that Lenovo’s digital notepad stands out – however not all of them are good.


Photograph by Mat Smith / Engadget

The Good Paper has a comparatively easy design, with an indent for the stylus, alongside the left facet of the system, the one element on the entrance of the system, in addition to the ten.3-inch E Ink touchscreen. You may work together with the display screen via each the stylus and typical contact enter, though you’ll be able to’t scribble along with your finger. The Good Paper’s matte display screen is crisp sufficient, at 227 pixels per inch (ppi), however noticeably a bit jaggier than the Kindle Scribe’s 300-ppi display screen, which is nearer to a high-definition pill show.

The {hardware} is strong too, and Lenovo bundles in each the stylus and a folio case for safeguarding the display screen – which additionally retains the stylus secure inside. Just like the Kindle Stylus, the Lenovo pen may also be magnetically connected.

It’s greater than enough for pencil sketches, doodles and note-taking. The Good Paper’s matte end makes it a delight to write down on, and in contrast to the ReMarkable 2, it has a built-in gentle to make use of it no matter ambient gentle ranges. I solely ever used it at its lowest brightness. (Who writes at the hours of darkness, anyway?) There’s additionally a built-in mic to file voice notes, however no audio system.

The Good Paper’s stylus feels nearly like a pencil, with a single flat facet aiding grip. The writing expertise is easy and responsive – it’s not at iPad ranges, however the 25 ms latency is easy sufficient to make sure it doesn’t interrupt your writing movement. The nibs are replaceable, and it feels, properly, pretty much as good as most different e-ink styluses I’ve used thus far. In comparison with the Kindle Scribe’s pen, I favor Lenovo’s streamlined design: no buttons, no eraser ends, simply an enter system. Tech-wise, the stylus has tilt and stress sensitivity (4,096 ranges of stress), to raised exhibit 9 totally different enter types, together with some first rate calligraphy nibs, highlighter and extra easy pen choices.

Software program

Lenovo Smart Paper review
Photograph by Mat Smith / Engadget

Lenovo’s Good Paper runs Android 11, however with an open-source twist, which ought to make for extra highly effective software program that I might hoped would transcend Amazon’s Kindle Scribe. Sadly, until you’re prepared to dive into sideloading and software program tinkering, it’s not remotely the Android expertise I hoped for. As a substitute, it’s a method for Lenovo to supply a responsive however easy contact interface.

The Good Paper’s notepad templates run the gamut from easy lined paper to multi-column affairs for spreadsheets on the go. Lenovo claims there are 74 templates, however the majority of them are extremely comparable.

Past tapping with the stylus, you should use swipes and faucets to navigate between notepad pages, however it’s so temperamental. A tappable icon to nudge you between pages – arrows would have been superb – would have saved me lots of fruitless swipes.

As a substitute, I’d need to wrestle with sliding from the middle of the show outwards. Do it unsuitable, and also you’ll bounce out to your notepad library or return a web page as a substitute of ahead.

There are additionally essentially the most fundamental of fundamental apps, together with a clock, calendar and electronic mail shopper. The reader helps EPUB, PDF and Workplace recordsdata, alongside your digital notepads made on the Good Paper itself. You may as well file voice notes and even dictate notes, in the event you’re feeling fortunate. There’s an eBooks.com app, which might be your principal place for ebook purchasing.

The eBooks.com portal is… superb? Amazon, predictably, dominates ebooks, however a minimum of there’s one thing right here appropriate with a longtime platform. Having stated that, even books purchased via eBooks.com don’t look nice. There are not any borders, so the textual content goes from edge to edge. As a substitute of leaping to the following web page, the physique textual content itself slides throughout the display screen, which is a bit jarring on a low-refresh-rate e-ink show. Barring the entire sideloading can of worms, the one approach to get your Kindle books on right here is to load them up on the Firefox browser, which requires an information connection.

You may fairly simply switch appropriate recordsdata if you have already got a PDF of a ebook, or an EPUB file. There may be one app that would make it simpler to maneuver recordsdata: Google Drive. But it surely isn’t on the homepage, it’s tabbed away. You can also’t use Drive to maneuver your digital notebooks, although. Sadly, for that you just want a particular subscription.

That is the place Lenovo’s Good Paper app is available in. It affords cloud-synced pocket book recordsdata, in the event you’re prepared to pay for a subscription. It’s prohibitively costly, although. Right here within the UK, the shortest choice is £9 per 30 days for 3 months, with an add restrict of 5GB. It scales up from there for longer intervals and much more storage. By comparability, Google Drive provides you 200 GB of storage for a mere £2.49 a month. (And it really works on every little thing.)

Lenovo Smart Paper review
Photograph by Mat Smith / Engadget

Much more bafflingly, to subscribe to the service, you’ll want entry to a Home windows or Android system and subscribe from these apps. For some purpose, Lenovo doesn’t supply subscription purchases on iOS, regardless of providing the app on the App Retailer. It’s one more headache for an extremely overpriced, underwhelming service. Sadly, there’s no simple workaround, even with these Google Drive shortcuts,

I initially thought the Good Paper’s offline handwriting recognition can be the standout characteristic, however with out simpler methods to sync your recordsdata (or copy and paste textual content), it’s extra of a helpful ability that often is available in helpful. As soon as I’d transformed my hen scratch to digital textual content, I used to be nonetheless beholden to a knowledge connection – and both Lenovo’s cloud sync or G Drive – to make the most of these digital notes. I’ve a horrible feeling that, with pages upon pages of handwriting to transform, it might simply be simpler for me to sort out my written notes, which defeats the aim of the factor.


Lenovo Smart Paper review
Photograph by Mat Smith / Engadget

The {hardware} is pricey, however strong. Regardless of these Android roots, although, it lacks the flexibleness of upstarts like ReMarkable’s e-ink units. Whereas the Google Drive integration is beneficial, your digital scribblings are trapped in Lenovo’s dear companion cloud service. Just some extra easy (related!) apps would even have made for a extra compelling system. If there’s Google Drive hooks, why not attempt to get a fundamental interface for Google Docs? Even when it didn’t assist handwriting recognition, the system lacks a approach to transpose your textual content notes to a textual content editor simply.

Ignoring the poorly thought-out cloud subscription pricing, the Good Paper can also be nearly £200 greater than the ReMarkable 2. For that quantity, the Good Paper must be the right e-ink notepad, however it’s not.

This text initially appeared on Engadget at https://www.engadget.com/lenovo-smart-paper-review-a-solid-e-ink-tablet-spoiled-by-the-cost-133056534.html?src=rss

Trending Merchandise

Add to compare
Corsair 5000D Airflow Tempered Glass Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – Black

Corsair 5000D Airflow Tempered Glass Mid-Tower ATX PC Case – Black

Add to compare
CORSAIR 7000D AIRFLOW Full-Tower ATX PC Case, Black

CORSAIR 7000D AIRFLOW Full-Tower ATX PC Case, Black


We will be happy to hear your thoughts

Leave a reply

Register New Account
Compare items
  • Total (0)
Shopping cart