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Christmas Gift Guide

The all-new S Note

Cover-ups

Templates

Sync notes online

Pick your instrument

Overview

Preview mode

Even more options

Pen detail

And then some

Not always perfect

Even more to do

Text transformer

Fun with colors

Charts and graphs

Resizing charts

Samsung's refined S Note app greets you with a brand-new splash screen.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Colorful virtual covers help recognize notes from one another.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
One new feature? You can now choose a blank page by default for every note you open. You'll also be able to swap out templates when you need 'em.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Partnering with Evernote means that you can store freeform S notes online along with the service's other digital reminders. The same goes for using your Samsung account as an online locker.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
When you start up S Note, you'll choose if you use the S Pen only to write, or let the screen sensitize to your finger or palm as well. You can toggle your choice in each note.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
A new, stylized overview screen makes notes much easier to distinguish than ever before.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
If you can't exactly remember the contents of your note, dragging down the preview pane gives you a peek inside.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Helpfully, you'll be able to add a page and select settings right from the cover, without ever opening to note. Settings include renaming the note, sharing it, and editing the cover design.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
The freeform drawing and writing tools also get a fresh lick o' paint; slider controls and a movable menu let you pick your colors.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
The cleaner design encourages extras like charts, maps, and clip art.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
I love the new check box list, but pairing it with text input didn't line up. Each new addition nudged each subsequent text field further to the right, and seemed to increase the font size after the first line item.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Text and script are both legible on this handwritten version of my grocery list. Additional settings help you manage pages.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Lasso text or shapes and tap the "transform" button to quickly, automatically, turn freeform writing into a shape, like a perfect square, a mathematical formula, or text. It worked with aplomb on simple, typical challenges I sent its way.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Clip-art shapes you add also give you control over the color and width of outlines and fill colors. Unfortunately, you can't "paint" a note's background color all at once.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Quickly add and edit simple pie charts and graphs using some shortcuts and a bit of handwriting to rename data sets. Sometimes handwriting recognition stumbled here, but you have to start over fresh if you make a mistake, instead of editing one letter at a time.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
Drag and drop to resize charts, and edit the layout, frames, and arrangement of the chart vis a vis other elements on the page.
Caption by / Photo by Screenshot by Jessica Dolcourt/CNET
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