If you see random lines appearing unexpectedly in either horizontal and vertical directions while writing your notes, this article will provide wider context as to what the issue is and why the lines might occur.
With writing being a fundamental aspect of using GoodNotes 5, it makes sense why this issue can be so frustrating for our users.
This issue is a widely-reported fault across various writing apps, and is ultimately a hardware-related issue*. The simplest fix for this issue is to report the problem to Apple, as users who have reported this and received a replacement Apple Pencil (or in some cases, an iPad) have confirmed that the replacement hardware solves this issue.
The first step that we would recommend when this issue occurs is to run through our basic troubleshooting for the Apple Pencil - as it may reveal a pre-existing fault with your hardware, or otherwise fix the problem. If this doesn't resolve the issue, as mentioned above, it may be worth reaching out to Apple regarding a replacement Apple Pencil.
As an aside, whilst we are unable to reproduce this and offer a definitive fix for this due to it reportedly being a hardware issue, we have received a number of user-submitted troubleshooting tips that have helped to resolve this issue without the need for hardware replacement:
- Play around with the different Pen options: Some users report that this issue only occurs when using the pressure-sensitive Pen tools, such as the Brush or Fountain pen (potentially implying an issue with the sensitivity in the pen). Other users report the opposite, mentioning this issue only occurs with the Ball Pen and highlighter. As such, play around with the different tools, to see if you can find a tool that doesn't cause this for you!
- Clean / replace the Apple Pencil tip: When doing this, be sure to fully remove and clean the tip, whilst also ensuring that the Apple Pencil sensor within is dust-free. If this doesn't work, you may want to consider replacing your Pencil tip.
- Change / remove your screen protector: A number of users have reported that removing their screen protector has resolved this issue - especially for those with tempered glass protectors.
- Ensure your screen is static / interference free: Sometimes a small static charge can build up on the surface of the iPad, which in turn can cause interference on the Pencil. There are a number of things that can cause this, but common fixes include using the app only when the device is NOT charging, removing your case from your iPad, moving your iPad away from other electronic devices (such as smart watches and computers), and working on a non-metallic / static surface such as a wooden desk.
- Note: If this is happening to you, a quick fix is to touch a metal part of your iPad with your finger, which should ground the small amount of static on the device.
- Play around with the "Palm Rejection" setting: Increasing your Palm Rejection in-app might fix the issue for you, as in rare cases it can be that your device is confusing your palm with the Pencil. We even have a help article talking about this!
- Try to keep your device screen dry: Having liquid (such as sweat or water) on the screen can sometimes cause issues with the Pencil interaction - so make sure to keep that screen dry!
- Change the sensitivity of the double-tap gesture: Whilst this tip only applies to Apple Pencil 2 users, changing around the double-tap sensitivity can be a solid fix for this issue in some cases - you can even turn it off entirely if you choose to. Apple has a help article outlining how to do this here.
- Reconnect your Bluetooth device: Go into your device settings, and turn off your Bluetooth, leave your device for a few seconds, then turn it back on and reconnect your Apple Pencil.
- Turn off "Zoom" within the iOS Settings: If you go into Settings > Accessibility, and turn off the "Zoom" option, some users have reported that this can fix the issue!
- Reinstall the app. Certain users have noted that the lines completely stopped appearing after deleting and reinstalling the app. We would only recommend completing this step if you have a full backup of your device. Whether that is an iCloud Backup, Auto-Backup or Manual Backup.
- Reset your iPad. Again, first make sure to back up your GoodNotes library or the entire device, then follow the steps here. If you're unsure, please go to the nearest Apple Store for help.