Best Apps For Surface Book

When you’re looking for the best apps for Surface Book, it’s important to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your device. With all of the different apps available and the wide variety of things you can do with your Surface Book, it’s important to pick the right ones for your needs so that your device can work at its best and you can get more done in less time.

Here are some of the best apps for Surface Book:

Best Surface Pro 4/3 APPs That Make Surface Better Than Mac

Best Apps For Surface Book

Which are the best apps for the Surface Pen that you should try on your Microsoft Surface Pro? If you haven’t used Windows 10 and active pens before it’s not that easy to find good apps. Some interesting features are build-in. But if you want to write down handwritten notes or draw something, you’ll need an app for that. Well, these are the most interesting apps for the Microsoft Surface Pen.

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Microsoft Surface Pro 7 on* Amazon
By the way, most of these apps work with the Surface Pro 6, Pro 7 and the Surface Go. Most of them run on the Surface Pro X as well.

Basic Apps You Should Know About
Let’s start with some basic apps.

Surface App
Surface App

The first app that you don’t need to use daily but should know about is the Surface app. With that one, you can see which Surface you are using. And if you’ve got problems with yours, that’s where you can download the Surface Diagnostic Toolkit. Inside that app, you can see how much battery your Surface Pen has left. And you can adjust the pressure sensitivity which can be useful if you feel like you’ve got to press too soft or too hard.

Snip & Sketch
Snip and Sketch

With the app “Snip & Sketch” you can take a screenshot of the whole screen or you can cut out a part of your screen. Once you’ve done that you can add handwriting or sketches and you can even use a ruler for drawing. You can launch the app using the start menu or with the keyboard shortcut Windows key + Shift + S. If you own the Surface Pen, you can also double press the eraser button on the back. You can adjust that in the settings.

Sticky Notes
Sticky Notes

To write down short and fast notes you can use the so-called Sticky Notes. They’re a part of Windows and you can find them using the start menu or by holding down the eraser button of the Surface Pen. It’s a very simple note-taking app and we’ll check out ones with more features later. The Sticky Notes are useful for when you quickly need to write down some notes.

Microsoft Edge
Microsoft Edge

I’m usually using Chrome as my browser and I don’t know anybody who prefers Microsoft Edge. However, Edge can be super useful if you want to annotate websites. That works much better in Edge than with the Windows screenshot tools because, in Edge, you can annotate the whole page and not just the initially visible area. You should also know that you can annotate PDFs that way in Edge too. So, if you don’t need to do that all the time, you might not need an additional app for that.

Windows Maps
Windows Maps

Windows 10 ships with Microsoft’s own Maps app out of the box. Usually, I prefer Google Maps like probably most do. However, sometimes Windows Maps can be useful – at least for some. You can draw on maps and annotate them inside the app which, just like with Edge, works much better than with the standard screenshot tools. For instance, you could write down some notes on a route you need to take. Or if you’re making invitations for an event. Sure, most people will probably only need it once or twice per life. But it could be handy for some.

The Best Note-Taking Apps
Alright, now let’s check out some note-taking apps.

Microsoft OneNote
Microsoft OneNote

I think the best note-taking app for Windows and especially for Surface users is Microsoft OneNote. All your notes stay synced across devices thanks to Microsoft’s cloud and there are good apps for Android and iOS too. In OneNote, you can start an unlimited number of notes and sort them in sections. You can write down notes with the Surface Pen or by using a keyboard. If you prefer to talk, you record voice notes too. And you can insert photos and much more.

Microsoft’s Surface Pen is supported very well in OneNote. Of course, it is, because it’s the most important app for the stylus. As I said, you can write down handwritten notes with it. But you can also draw shapes, charts and use tools like a ruler. You can also transform the handwritten text into computer text.

The math features can be interesting for students. With those, you can write down an equation and have it solved by OneNote, for instance. You can also let it draw a chart based on that equation.

OneNote is free for everybody. It’s easy to get into it. But if you want to make use of all features, it can be handy to check out some YouTube videos from OneNote power users.


An alternative to OneNote is Plumbago which is free as well. It’s a normal note-taking app in which you can have several notebooks with lots of notes in them. Plumbago is not as feature-rich as OneNote is, but it’s an easy to learn app.

Bamboo Paper
Bamboo Paper

Bamboo Paper is a note-taking app from Wacom that you can use on Windows, Android, and iOS. Its main features are the same again: You can have unlimited notes in lots of notebooks. You can write down handwritten notes and draw something. In this case, basic features are free. However, if you want additional tools and backgrounds you’ve got to pay.


Another note app with more features is Inkodo. Here you can save notes in notebooks again. You can use several kinds of brushes to write or draw something. There’s a ruler and you can use voice notes too. While basic features of Inkodo are free, you’ve got to pay to unlock pro features.

Read: These Are The Best Windows Tablets

The Best PDF Apps
I’m mostly asked for good apps to annotate PDFs with. Here are two I liked using.

PDF Reader by Xodo
PDF Reader by Xodo

The PDF Reader by Xodo is a pretty good app that you can use to read, create, edit, and annotate PDFs. You can open PDFs and add your handwritten annotations. But you can also underline text – ether free by hand or with a special tool. Documents can be signed with it and you can save your signature for later. All that works quite well.

If you want, you can also use it to create new PDFs. You can start with a blank paper or with an image. Now comes the best part: The PDF Reader by Xodo is completely free.

Drawboard PDF
Drawboard PDF

Drawboard PDF is a paid app that costs around 12 US Dollars. It offers similar features like the PDF Reader by Xodo does but has more features in general. You can use it to edit PDFs and add your handwritten annotations. You can also underline text and draw something. Pages can be added to PDFs and you can create your own, of course. I like the interface of Drawboard PDF much more because it looks more modern.

If you need to, you can also add a subscription for Pro-Features that cost 25 US Dollars per year. That gives you some additional but very specialized features like a protractor, calibrated measurements, and a document builder. Most will never need that, and if you do, you probably know it already.

The Best Drawing Apps
Let’s check out some drawing apps.

Sketchbook by Autodesk
Sketchbook by Autodesk

One of the best drawing apps for the Surface Pro is Sketchbook by Autodesk which is free. The Surface Pen is supported and works great. You can draw with different pressure-sensitive brushes and pens and choose an unlimited amount of colors. Integrated are a couple of tools like a ruler and a mirror which, well, works as if you place a mirror in the middle of a piece of paper.

It supports layers just like Photoshop does. Try it, even though it’s a free app, I think it’s an excellent one. Maybe even something for professionals. It does not run on the Surface Pro X though.


If you don’t like Sketchbook, you can check out Sketchable. The basic features are very similar. Sketchable is a drawing app with different brushes and backgrounds. But it’s not as feature-rich. And for some features, you’ll have to pay for a premium package.

Fresh Paint
Fresh Paint

A much simpler one is called Fresh Paint. This drawing app is not meant to be for professionals at all. Instead, it’s an app to have fun with. It does not have that many tools. You can work with some brushes to create oil paintings, but you can use pencils too. That looks nice. But, as I said, it’s not a professional app. Fresh Paint is fun to play around with and should be a great app for kids. It’s free.

Adobe Photoshop CC
Microsoft Surface Pro 7 with Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop should be on this list too – and it is. The Surface Pen is supported very well. While I never use Photoshop to draw something, I use it a lot to edit photos. You can use the Surface Pen to remove sensor dust, for example. Or you can remove wrinkles from faces or use it to work with layer masks. That works very well, and the performance of the Surface Pro is good enough for some serious editing.

Photoshop is not free, of course. You’ve got to have an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription. It does not run great on the Surface Pro X and Surface Go but very good on the Pro 6 and Pro 7.

Zen: Coloring Book For Grownups
Zen Coloring Book

Let’s end this list with an app to have fun with. Zen is a coloring book that’s made for grownups, at least that’s what they’re calling it. However, I’m sure kids will have fun with it too. Well, it’s basically a coloring book but a digital one. You can color in several patterns and drawings. Many are free like the app itself. But for some, you’ve got to pay around 10 Dollars.

best productivity apps for surface pro

Your time is precious, and to efficiently complete your tasks, you need to be productive. With the right set of apps, you can boost your productivity tenfold. If you genuinely want to work smart, you need to use the correct tools that will help save time, keep your tasks organized and make your workflow much smoother.

With so many productivity apps out there, it can be quite tricky knowing what’s worth trying, which is why we have compiled this list to bring you the best productivity apps for Windows PCs. Read on as we list the apps you need to improve your workflow.

  1. Microsoft 365
    Person editing a PowerPoint templateSurface/Unsplash
    Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) is the ideal office productivity suite for enterprises and students alike. Chances are you’re probably already using an earlier version of Microsoft Office for your daily needs, but Microsoft 365 brings you the best Microsoft has to offer.

Microsoft 365’s includes famed legacy applications like Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Access, and Outlook that need no introduction. In addition to a wide range of apps from the Office suite, Microsoft 365 comes integrated with OneDrive.

So not only do you get the best office productivity software with Microsoft 365, but you also receive a reliable cloud-based integration that allows you to access your files from virtually anywhere and simultaneously keep essential files backed up safely.


While Microsoft Office tends to receive its fair share of criticism from time to time, there is no doubt that Microsoft is the market leader in office productivity software.

Office 2021 Vs. Microsoft 365: Which One Should You Use?

The best thing about Microsoft 365 is that it is very accessible. The web-based applications of Microsoft 365 can be accessed for free with a Microsoft account, but you need to choose a suitable plan if you want to install Microsoft 365 on your Windows PC.

Download: Microsoft 365 (Free, subscription available)

  1. Asana
    asana on Windows 11
    Asana is renowned for collaboration and task management. It is a very flexible task management tool that makes team collaboration seamless. The app is designed to have an intuitive interface and comes packed with plenty of tools that make workload management and task assignment very efficient.

Asana is not the best project management tool, but there is a core emphasis on productivity and effective collaboration. It is very easy to keep track of all tasks assigned to a particular employee, and you can even generate relevant reports.

Creative Ways To Get The Most Out Of Asana

What Asana lacks in built-in features is made up for with powerful integrations that you can use to make Asana adapt to your workflow. You can integrate plenty of platforms with Asana, such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, Zapier, Salesforce, and Adobe Creative Cloud.

If you have a small team of up to 15 members, you can use Asana for free. However, for bigger organizations, you’re going to have to purchase a dedicated plan.

Download: Asana (Free, subscription available)

  1. Slack
    Slack for Windows
    Slack is one of the best communication tools out there. Over the last couple of years, it has become a critical necessity in the workflow of organizations. Slack is an exceptional communication and productivity tool in terms of functionality and design.

Through Slack, your team can have one-to-one and group conversations and even audio/video calls. Organizations tend to set up different ‘channels’ for each team so that that team collaboration can excel.

Apart from work discussions, Slack also helps build a sense of community within the organization through dedicated channels for various leisure topics such as sports, reading, traveling, etc.

You can even integrate Slack with industry-leading software and custom apps to get the most efficient workflow. OneDrive, Google Docs, Microsoft Teams, and Github are just a few platforms you can integrate with Slack.

Slack has a free version, but with limited features, bigger organizations will likely invest in a premium pricing model that gets them the most of Slack.

Download: Slack (Free, subscription available)

  1. Trello
    trello for productivity
    Trello is another exceptional productivity tool on this list. It is designed to organize and manage everything from complex project management milestones to your daily to-dos. Trello allows teams to collaborate effectively and reach productivity goals.

Trello is straightforward to set up; start with a Trello board and add features that customize your team’s unique workflow. Tasks are organized using Trello cards, and you can track every part of a task and even share it with team members. App integrations are a necessity, and Trello allows you to connect with the app you need for your workflow quickly.

All in all, Trello is a super user-friendly platform that helps you stay on top of your work. You can use the free version of Trello if you have a small team, but you should consider investing in a paid plan for advanced features.

Download: Trello (Free, subscription available)

  1. Buffer
    buffer social media
    Buffer is one of the best social media management apps out there. If you’re responsible for managing the social media accounts of your organization, then you’re not going to find an app better than Buffer.

Buffer makes posting, scheduling, and performance tracking straightforward and efficient. You can manage the individual posting routines for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter. Posts that have been queued will automatically get posted at their set schedule.

Buffer also includes a comprehensive analytics tool that shows you the metrics that matter. You can track clicks, comments, shares, and likes to understand better your followers and what they like.

You can get started with the free plan of Buffer aimed at individuals who are just getting started with social media. However, for detailed engagement and analytic tools, you will have to purchase the premium subscription plan.

Download: Buffer (Free, subscription available)

  1. RescueTime
    rescuetime for windows
    If you’re someone who gets easily distracted and would like to keep track of your time, then you need RescueTime. The app silently works in the background and monitors your activity without distracting you. You can then set up targets and alerts to develop a better working habit.

The free version of the app is reasonably sufficient for most users, but a paid plan offers you additional features.

Download: RescueTime (Free, subscription available)

Get Productive With the Right Tools
Productivity is crucial, and getting the right tools is the first step to achieving your goals. Apps like Slack and Asana help you track tasks and collaborate with your team effectively, and if you use the full potential of Microsoft 365, you will be able to streamline your workflow and become more productive.


Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

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