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Is the Pen Mightier than the Finger?
Pencil War
Is the Pen Mightier than the Finger?
  • By Michael Herh
  • November 18, 2015, 03:30
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The Apple Pencil being used on the iPad Pro.
The Apple Pencil being used on the iPad Pro.


The popularization of tablets and phablets with big screens are triggering a full-scale “pencil war,” as companies launch smart devices with pencils.

Samsung Electronics created big fans of the Galaxy Note Series by adding exquisite electronic pencils to them. In the second half of this year, Apple and Microsoft challenged Samsung by launching the iPad Pro and Surface Pro 4, both of which come with pens.

According the smart device industry on Nov. 17, the Apple Online Store began to sell the iPad Pro on Nov. 11. Since then, the new product has been gaining strong popularity. At the center of the popularity is the Apple Pencil, which is even going through a supply shortage. Expected delivery days for the iPad Pro specified at the Apple Online Store have been extended to four to five weeks from one to two weeks at the beginning.

The apple pencil can automatically sense not only pushing force, but also its location and inclination with a special sensor. Thus, the electronic pencil comes in handy for professional illustration and 3D design work. Users can make specific words bold and colors dark using the pen’s pressure.

Microsoft also took the wrap off a new Surface Pen while introducing its tablet PC, the Surface Pro 4. Unlike the previous pen, this pen can perceive 1024 levels of pressure, enabling its users to write and draw better and make good use of it at work. In particular, the back end of the pen can nicely work as an eraser.

Samsung Electronics, which popularized pens for smart devices ahead of its competitors, launched a new “S Pen” by way of the Galaxy Note 5. The company made the electronic pen feel more natural by focusing on its basic functions as a pen. That is to say, users can quickly take a memo on the screen of the Galaxy Note 5 even when the screen is off. The Galaxy Tab A also comes with an S Pen.