Paper

Paper

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Developer
Version
Varies between devices
Downloads
Category
Productivity
Android OS
Varies by device
Price
Free

With more than 30 million users around the world, Paper by WeTransfer is a creativity-sparking app for those who love doodling, sketching, taking notes on the go and more. In their own words, this app allows you to “bring life to your ideas”.

Availability

Fortunately for Apple enthusiasts, Paper by WeTransfer is available on the App Store for iPhone and iPad. Its latest version is available for devices that run iOS 13 and above.

Unfortunately for the rest, the app is not (and won’t —maybe ever— be!) available neither for Android nor for Windows.

First impressions

At first sight, Paper looks pretty basic but lets you sketch your ideas, take down notes or doodle your mind out. It doesn’t seem to be made for more sophisticated creations like digital art and lettering.

Just so you know, once you get your hands on the app you get to watch a rather long tutorial or demo which shows you all the amazing tools you can use, only to get through it (after more than 20 minutes for sure) and find out the free version has few features available... Yup, you have to pay to access all the cool stuff you’ve just seen and learned how to use.

Basic features

Paper grants access to all basic features for free. These include creating journals, drawings and notes, and using a decent color palette and some simple tools such as Pen tool, Pencil tool, Brush tool, Felt pen tool, Eraser tool. Depending on what your specific needs are and what you expect from a sketching app, these features might fall short.

Paper Pro

The app’s paid version is subscription-based. Paper Pro unlocks premium features and premium content: all the cool stuff I mentioned before. Among them, you’ll find:

  • Journal Customization, which lets you set templates for your pages, covers, and cover band colors for your journals.
  • Custom templates allows you to create your own design and save it to the templates’ library.
  • Journal sync, useful to make a backup of your journals to iCloud and sync between your Apple devices.
  • Private Journals, essential to protect your work.
  • Collage tool, to add multiple images to your canvas.
  • Unlimited color swatches for customizable color palettes.
  • Multiple brush sizes (small, medium, and large).
  • Cut and slice imported photos.
  • Copy and paste from one page to another.
  • Scale and rotate elements.
  • Diagram, Cut, and Fill tools.

The Paper Store

This is an interesting addition for times when you’re out of ideas. In The Paper Store you’ll find loads of creative tasks in the form of tutorials, guides and daily art-creating challenges to kick-start your creative flow.

Teachers’ (and visual learners’) favorite

No matter how simple the free version is, Paper by WeTransfer is a go-to app for teachers who want to encourage their students’ artistic and creative thinking. When putting pen to paper is challenging, putting thoughts to Paper is easier and a fun alternative. It’s wonderful for everything from creating mind maps and making art projects, to using it as a modern -and cleaner- dry-erase board.

My final verdict

I found it annoying that Paper’s free version is so basic when other free apps include many of its premium features. In this sense, paying for the subscription ends up being too expensive. I find Autodesk Sketchbook to be a better option. Its free version is way more complete with really useful and varied settings and lots of different brushes, pencils, airbrushes, and the sort.

If you're OK with dropping some money on a drawing app, I'd pick Procreate. If its free version is already good, the Pro one is definitely superb and worth the investment.

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Rating

Pros
  • Simple and intuitive interface.
  • Easy to use, with or without a stylus.
  • Limited but sufficient tools in the free version.
Cons
  • Only available for iPhone and iPad.
  • The best features are in the Pro version.
  • Occasional syncing problems, which may result in missing content.
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Paper

You are going to be redirected to the external website to download the app.

Frequently asked questions

Is Paper free?

Yes, you can access the app’s basic features for free. A subscription is optional, and unlocks additional premium features and content.

I’m a designer and want to try it. Is Paper a good tool for me?

Since the free version offers few but very good features for a doodler, I’d say the Pro version is a better fit for artists or even architects.

When will Paper be available for Android or Windows?

Unfortunately, the company stated that developing Paper for other platforms is not in their plans.

Screenshots

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