This funky new app for the iPad brings note taking functionality to the device and in style. Apple sure had let many down by not including a stylus and note taking functionality to the iPad but this new app does all that for $2.99. Released by Cocoa Box Design, this app has already generated great reviews and also hogged the top selling app slot for quite some time now. It was also one of the 10 highest grossing apps for the iPad.

Penultimate provides you a leather bound notebook with white lined paper, graph paper or blank white paper as per your choice. You can maintain any number of notebooks. Thus organizing your notes is very simple and hassle free. Once launched the app displays a single notebook with its title on it and also the date of last update and the number of pages used. Touching the cover will open the notebook and double tapping it will allow you to edit it. On the main screen swiping left or right will show you the other notebooks available. This feature can get mildly irritating if you are maintaining more five or six notebooks.

Editing is done only through pen( your finger) as the app does not have support for the keyboard, but then if it did it would become any other notepad like app. Sadly only the black colour is available and only one type of tip is allowed. Somehow we were reminded of the old school days where it was we used fancy multicoloured pens. That said, the ink is very nice and exudes an authentic feel. There are many positive reviews on the app store raving about how good the ink is.

Pen strokes are rendered similar to a calligraphy pen, except that instead of when you turn your pen the stroke gets thinner when you go faster. There is also an eraser tool which works just like a normal eraser but just bigger in size. Thus fine editing is tricky. There is also an option at the bottom of the page to clear the whole page and that too without a warning screen. Fortunately Penultimate offers a number of undo options. The app also possesses excellent export options. You can email a single page from the notebook in .png format or even the whole notebook in pdf format.

Penultimate is a very good app but it comes with its own flaws. By default you cannot use a stylus as your palm would be resting on the screen and the iPad cannot differentiate between your palm and the stylus. Also there is no support for multicoloured pens and lacks zoom. Nevertheless if you can get over writing with your finger you should definitely give this app a try.