HP Pro Slate 8 can digitise notes written on any type of paper

Is the HP Duet Pen mightier than the Livescribe?

If you're looking for a way to instantly turn your written notes and drawings into digital copies, HP's latest business-focused Android tablet may fit the bill.

The HP Pro Slate 8 is an 8-inch tablet that comes with a stylus (sorry, high-fidelity HP Duet Pen) and suite of productivity apps. It's being launched alongside a 12-inch version called the HP Pro Slate 12.

Unlike Samsung's Galaxy Note devices that let you write on the screen, HP's latest tablets house four ultrasonic microphones that pick up a high-pitch sound emitted by the pen. So long as you're resting on a flat surface, the two can communicate allowing you to write on any type of paper and have the contents immediately beamed onto the display.

LiveScribe's 3 Smartpen can also digitise written notes, but it works using a camera in the pen's nib to track its location by reading a pattern on proprietary dotted paper. As with certain LiveScribe pens, the Pro Slate 8 and Pro Slate 12 are compatible with note-taking app Evernote out-of-the-box.

Taking note

In terms of specs, the Pro Slate 8 comes with a 2,048 x 1,536 pixel-resolution display beefed up by Corning Gorilla Glass 4, up to 32GB of storage, 2GB of RAM, 802.11b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi and micro USB connectivity.

The Pro Slate 12 has a 1,600 x 1,200 pixel-resolution display with Corning Concore Glass, and both come with HP's cloud-based device management software, HP TouchPoint Manager.

HP reckons the Pro Slate 8 and Pro Slate 12 could appeal to the legal and financial sectors which require written notes to be digitised. Both come with the pen as standard and are available now starting at $379 (around £249 / AUS$463) for the 8-inch model, rising to $529 (around £349, or AUS$646) for the 12-inch version.