Best Windows apps for Surface Pen and Surface Slim Pen users 2023

The Surface Pen and Surface Slim Pen are mighty tools that only get better when you add some great apps into the mix. From note-taking to form-filling to coloring, here are some of our favorite apps to use on our different Surface devices. 

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Thanks to most of the above apps having at least some sort of free version, you can give them a try with your pen essentially risk-free to see if they'll come in handy. And don't worry about mixing and matching hardware; the Surface Slim Pen works with older Surfaces. Don't have a Surface Pen? You can always check out these Surface Pen and Surface Slim Pen alternatives.

Wondering exactly where to start with the apps? Bamboo Paper is a lightweight app that delivers a true paper feel while writing. Not only is it great for notetaking and journaling — you can add your own photos to a page — it can also be used to sketch or draw thanks to a custom color palette and a collection of tools beyond just a pen.

Need something more suited for artistic ambition? I've been using Leonardo, which is now available straight from the Microsoft Store, for some time, and I appreciate the simple UI that scales to any size display and the overall collection of tools. Whether you want to sketch something rough or go for a full work of art, you shouldn't have any problems. The infinite canvas is ideal for letting your artwork flow, and while it's still in its beta stage, you can save $40 off off the full price.

Cale Hunt
Senior Editor, Laptop Reviews

Cale Hunt is formerly a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He's been reviewing laptops and accessories full-time since 2016, with hundreds of reviews published for Windows Central. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.