Now there's a new competitor that looks to take the iPad sketching world by storm. Paper is the first app by upstart development firm FiftyThree. A number of the employees spent time at Microsoft, developing Courier -- a dual-screen digital notebook that was axed by Microsoft.
The Verge's Ellis Hamburger spoke to the team about the app.
When you first open the app, you first see a panoramic view of all of your notebooks floating in mid-air. Each notebook looks like a premium Moleskine journal, fit with a stunning cover and pages that look soft to the touch. When you tap a notebook, you're launched into a CoverFlow-esque page browser where you can thumb through sketches in your notebook. Tap a new page and your entire screen turns an almost white shade of vanilla, unadorned by faux binder rings or ripped edges you see in other apps.
Swipe up from the bottom of the screen to reveal your artist's palette, and swipe down again to hide it. Paper comes with an eraser and just one tool to draw with, a fountain pen that's unlike any fountain pen I’ve used. The faster you move your finger, the thicker the line gets. For $1.99 each, you can purchase four other tools, denoted not by their conventional names but instead by utility: there's Write (ballpoint), Sketch (pencil), Outline (marker), and Color (watercolor paintbrush). Each of the five tools has its own unpredictable personality worth mastering, which makes these instruments so much more interesting than conventional digital pens and pencils you can find in other apps. The FiftyThree team chose these five tools because they encompass the five most common scenarios they encounter when mapping out ideas and art on a daily basis.
Check out The Verge's lengthly article for much more about the app and the team behind it.
For those who want to jump in and try it out, Paper for iPad is a free download on the App Store. [Direct Link]