Best Planner Apps for iPad

Best Planner Apps for iPad

Planner apps for the iPad are slowly growing, with more people turning towards the paperless movement, using an iPad to plan, journal and write lists is a great idea.

Best iPad Planner Apps for Better Productivity

Here's a quick summary of the iPad productivity apps for planning we have inside this list.

  • Zinnia - A visual planner with built-in templates, quite like a digital bullet journal.
  • Goodnotes - A great free-roam planner app with AI thanks to Goodnotes 6 release.
  • Notability - Very similar to Goodnotes, great to use with the Apple Pencil for drawing.
  • Notion - A more structured space with templates and more abilities for the organisation.
  • Apple Notes - A general and easy-to-use note-taking and planning app on the iPad.

The planner apps listed above are in no particular order, however, all can fill a different kind of need. From creative bullet journaling with stickers and tables to a more structured way of organising your notes, plans and journal entries.

Best Creative Digital Bullet Journal

The Basics of Zinnia

Zinnia is almost a one-of-a-kind application in terms of it being as close to a bullet journal as possible. With Zinnia, you can use all the creative add-ons you would usually stick inside a paper journal. For example, you can use a range of stickers, washi tape and add images.

Zinnia also comes with lots of templates and full journal templates ready for you to get started. You can plan your days with downloadable calendar templates, or create your own. You can also download or create habit trackers too.

Overall, Zinnia is great for anyone who wants to replace the paper bullet journal for a digital planner that syncs with other devices. It allows you to keep that element of creativity too.

Key Features of Zinnia

Here are a few key features of Zinnia you might like if you're into bullet journaling.

  • Tons of pre-made templates to choose from, including full journals or just pages, really helpful for getting started since there is a ton of tools you can use here.
  • Draw and paint on pages (digitally) with different brushes and tools, great for expressing creativity and creating your own journal.
  • Add stickers, washi tape, notes, images and more to create an in-depth journal. Making Zinnia a lightweight bullet journal you can use at any time.
  • Journal about anything, manifestations, affirmations or just a daily reflection, Zinnia is a really flexible app for planning.
  • Create as many journals as you like to organise different topics or subjects, much like you can in Goodnotes and Notability.
  • Download a calendar template to plan your days and weeks inside a journal, or create your own calendar inside your journal.

New AI Abilities for Writing

The Basics of Goodnotes

Goodnotes is another free space digital planner app great for iPad users. You can download PDFs to annotate or download them online to create ready-made journals and workbooks. Lots of people create and sell digital planners specifically for Goodnotes.

Goodnotes 6 now uses AI to assist with writing. This works with both typing and handwriting. It can suggest words or spellcheck when you have written something wrong. This helps speed up note-taking and planning without the need to go back and check.

Students love to use Goodnotes to download notes and plan to help organise their time studying. You can of course just use Goodnotes as an empty planner space to journal, draw and create.

GoodNotes, iPad, Notebooks Filter

Key Features of Goodnotes

Goodnotes has many great features thanks to its recent upgrade to Goodnotes 6 with AI.

  • Good for handwriting and typing notes to journal, plan and organise your time. You can change the view from writing to still, allowing you to navigate pages.
  • Create different journals with covers to organise areas of life and planning, you can also download covers to create aesthetic journals.
  • Download templates to get started, or create your own, you can find tons of Goodnotes templates for full planners online.
  • Use AI to spell check and suggest words as you are typing and creating, this is new to Goodnotes 6.
  • Annotate PDFs for studying, and mark up any document with a range of tools, great for students, or if you're learning a new topic.
  • Search for pages and journals using keywords, useful if you want to remember a certain date or information you had written about a topic.

Great For Students And Visual Learning

The Basics of Notability

Notability is very much like Goodnotes, it's another planning, PDF, drawing and handwriting tool for all note-taking needs. It's especially well used by students, teachers, and professionals to create and share their notes with others.

You can also download templates or create your own planner here with Notability, but to differ from Goodnotes, it is more widely used for note-taking, studying and presenting ideas. You can also present notes with a secret side note to help with what to say.

Notability also has features to record audio, perfect for studying and taking notes, you can also download add-ons to help with specific needs like handwriting recognition and math.

Take a look at the Notability gallery to see how others have used the app.

Using Notability for Sketch Drawings

Key Features of Notability

Notability is a really useful app for taking notes, planning, presenting ideas and more.

  • Handwriting and typing abilities with different tools available, giving users a range of ways to take notes and express creativity.
  • Record audio to save in Notability, to then annotate into notes. Very helpful for lectures, or presentations.
  • Download templates for planners and calendars, great for getting started and learning how to use Notability.
  • Be creative and draw, paint or colour on an empty canvas, making Notability a great tool for the whole family to use.
  • Download add-ons such as handwriting recognition and math conversion, this helps with creating better writing, study notes and more.
  • Share notes or present notes to others with secret side notes for prompts to help you talk about your presentation.

Best For Structured Planning

The Basics of Notion

Notion is well known for using it on a desktop, but you can also use Notion on an iPad to plan and organise your time. Notion differs from Goodnotes, Zinnia and Notability because it allows for more structure. You can create a more in-depth workspace with Notion.

To use Notion for planning you can create different areas as workspaces, such as holidays, food shopping, studying, journaling and much more. You can definitely find ready-made templates to suit all of these needs as well.

The magic with Notion is that it uses databases, so when you add databases to different pages, the information can all sync together, making Notion a great connected experience.

Easlo add on templates for journal, customise workspace in best notion templates.

Key Features of Notion

Notion has tons and tons of features, however here are some great ones for planning.

  • Different views such as a timeline view to see your events and tasks in order. You can switch between views to see what works best.
  • Free space to create boards and pages to suit your needs, Notion is fully customisable, so it does take some time to get used to.
  • Link databases of information to different pages, this is helpful for adding information you may need elsewhere, such as to-do lists.
  • Type freely to create a journal entry space, you can then save all journals in their own workspace.
  • Add others to workspaces to share notes and plans with each other. Collaborate easily and asynchronously.
  • Use AI to assist with writing, coming up with ideas, and breaking writer's block. Notion AI is a newer addition to the tool but is very useful for summarising and editing text.

You can find a huge range of journaling templates for Notion here.

For General Use and Collaboration

The Basics of Apple Notes

Apple Notes is the note-taking app that comes with your iPad, it's free and a really good alternative for planning without having to download another app, or buy one.

With Apple Notes you can create different folders, add tags, and sort your notes from date, alphabet and more. You can also search for notes using specific keywords.

Apple Notes is a good choice for planning because it's so simple, but you will have to create your own workspace, there aren't any templates to download to help with with. You can however use Apple Notes to jot down ideas, thoughts and daily journal entries.

Key Features of Apple Notes

Although Apple Notes is a simple and easy app to use, it does have many features.

  • Use hashtags to help organise specific notes, you can then add these to a folder, or view all hashtags in the sidebar.
  • Customise the filters you use or sort and organise your notes, this can be from the last edited, alphabetical order or other options.
  • Use the Apple Pencil to draw, with a range of brush styles, great for practising creativity and art skills, or if you prefer writing notes.
  • Create Smart Folders with filters to organise certain notes, for example, every note that uses the word "shopping".
  • Scan paper documents to edit and annotate inside Apple Notes, great for students, or to save paper copies of important information.

What Are Planner Apps For The iPad?

Planner apps for the iPad help users plan visually on a larger screen and keep digital records of their planning, notes and journalling. You can still have the normal feel of writing inside a planner by using the Apple pencil, and a paper feel screen protector.

Many people are moving over to this kind of planning because iPads are also easy to carry around, and apps can sync with desktops and mobile devices too, so you can have your digital planner wherever you are.

Lots of planner apps for iPad are also very unstructured, giving users the freedom to create a workflow that is best suited for them. This is great if you are using an iPad as a diary, or to just create daily notes without the need for intense organisation.

Of course, there are some other iPad planner apps that can offer more structure through the use of pre-made templates like you can find in Notion, or download on Goodnotes.

So Which iPad Productivity Tool Should I Choose?

When it comes to planning, you either want a super creative space that gives a bullet journal feel, or a more minimalistic, structured place that still offers flexibility.

If you are wanting a creative fun tool to use to create planners, journal and take notes, Zinnia is a great option. You can find tons of videos and inspiration online for creating aesthetic planners and journals with Zinnia.

If you are a student and just looking for a way to create notes, download lectures and create a space for all research and revision, Goodnotes or Notability are very similar in their use for this.

Notion is a great tool to use if you want to extend your planning into projects, tasks, to-dos and collaborating with others because it offers a flexible and customisable workspace you can edit and change at any time. Notion also provides a range of Notion templates to get started.

And finally, Apple Notes is already available to all iPad users, and it actually has tons of great features for planning, adding others to notes to organise trips, and scanning documents. You can read more about how to use Apple Notes here.

Explore More Planning and Note Tools

Planner Apps and Note Taking Tools