In 2007, Apple’s former CEO, the late Steve Jobs, condemned the stylus outright, saying: “Who wants a stylus? You have to get them and put

Guess who wants a stylus now…

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In 2007, Apple’s former CEO, the late Steve Jobs, condemned the stylus outright, saying:

“Who wants a stylus? You have to get them and put them away, you lose them, yuck! Nobody wants a stylus.”

Well, The Telegraph reports that Apple has applied for patents on an advanced stylus that will sense movement and provide feedback to the user when it passes specific points on screen.

Like many other things that Apple has condemned in the past, here they are coming full circle with efforts to implement this. Of course, they are doing it different and better, which is something that you cannot take away from Apple.

It is a good strategy though: ridicule whatever you are not ready, secretly start work on doing it better, then once ready, declare that its never been done before. As a matter of fact, declare that it is magical! It works well, and perhaps other companies should emulate this stunning strategy. You can’t beat a winning formula.

iPen Patent
Features of Apple’s advanced stylus (shall we call it the iPen?) include:

  • ability to sense the amount of pressure the user is applying
  • ability to sense angle the user is holding the stylus at, and as a result could change what their touch screen devices show
  • ability to provide the user with feedback, such as a vibration, e.g. to emulate the sensation of moving a pen across a smooth surface while a lower frequency signal may emulate the feel of moving a pen across a rougher surface
  • ability to provide audio feedback e.g. to simulate the sound of moving a pen or a paintbrush across a piece of paper or a canvas, with the speaker emitting different sounds for emulating a pen or a paintbrush
  • possibility of incorporating a camera in to a stylus as a means of establishing how the device is moving in relation to display of the touch screen device

The guys at Apple are mad, because this sounds like one heck of a stylus. If this patent ever sees the light of day, this is the stylus that I want to be caught with, dead or alive.

If you have been following my writing, you already know that I have believed in the return of the stylus for two years now. HTC gave it a shot. Samsung is doing same, and now Apple is interested in the stylus. One thing is clear: with Samsung and Apple pushing it, there is no doubt that the stylus will make a big comeback.

A very big “IF.”

Read the full details at The Telegraph.


  1. Got to give it to Apple, those guys know how to design and give swag to their hardware.

    If this sees the light of day, I predict asia based manufacturers making styli with stripped down capabilities of Apple’s iPen that can work on existing android tablets

  2. this is the stylus that I want to be caught with, dead or alive.

    Sure; as it is done om earth, so it is on heaven / hell.

    Momentous ideas there!


    We all evenyually lose our styluses -evem the most fadtidious / meticulous individuals.

    I hope such a stylus would be easily CHEAPLY replaceable (a man can dream.)

    While thr stylus is in ‘Lost’ status, the device is half_ crippled!

    A solution may be to tie sich wonder stylus to the device – with a diamond microchain. Your stylus, or your life!

  3. This sounds similar to my brothers Wacom digitizer pen, alhough it does not emulate the sound of writing on paper but it does have pressure sensitivity and angle (pen tilt) sensitivity as for vibrating his digitizer pen does not have that. He uses it on his fujitsu tablet for drawing anime.

  4. @Eye.Bee.Kay – uhm, an Apple product, cheap replacement? Yes, when an Asian-based manufacturer gets hold of it and, like Gabriel said, makes the inexpensive version that many of us can enjoy.

    And we know it will happen!

  5. Still have the stylus of my Windows Mobile Samsung i8000 by the way, been using it since 2009.
    Not all stylus do get lost

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