S Pen: How the Mightiest Tool of Mankind Has Evolved… Again

on September 10, 2014
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In BC 5000, the wheel was developed in Mesopotamia and India, beer was first brewed, and rice was first harvested in China. The very first ‘pen’ is believed to date back approximately 7000 years ago as well. The word ‘pen’ originates from the Latin word for feather, penna, and is believed to be inspired by quill pen back in AD 500.


Now back to the future – on September 2014, Samsung unveils its 4th generation of the Galaxy Note along with the S Pen.  When you take a close look at the history of ‘pen’, the shape of it hasn’t changed much since BC 5000 and this applies to the look of the S Pen as well. However, everything else about the S Pen has evolved, even down to its very definition.


No matter how much tech devices have evolved, pens certainly have many advantages over keyboards, at least in terms of compatibility and accessibility – with a pen you can write virtually anywhere. Therefore, to some extent, pens can be considered as a superior writing instrument to keyboards or touch pads.


However, the one flaw that pens have is that they aren’t compatible to our mobile devices. Considering we use mobile devices as the primary tool for handling information, the lack of compatibility of pen poses a major problem as a writing instrument. As tech devices are replacing many paper oriented products, not having access to a tech-friendly pen is getting more inconvenient for people who often take quick notes or enjoy drawing.


The Galaxy Note series have filled this gap with the S Pen. Thanks to the large screen of the Galaxy Note series, S Pen maximizes its convenience for users. Because of the pen like shape, S Pen can emulate a real-pen feeling when writing and drawing. The shape plays a significant part in its usability. The sharp end and thin and solid stick of the pen enables users to be more accurate and efficient, and have more control when using it on the Galaxy Note devices.


However, S Pen has evolved over the years and it can do so much more than just writing and drawing. Taking advantage of the shape of the S Pen, technology has allowed S Pen to not only write or draw, but also bring unique features that differentiate Galaxy Note series from other mobile devices. 


For example, the 3rd generation S Pen features include Action Memo which enables users to make calls, send messages or emails, and search maps; Scrapbook which allows users to conveniently pin various contents by simply drawing a circle around them; and Screen Write, which enables users to take a screenshot and add memos to it. In addition, the S Pen also supports the S Finder function, which allows users to search for any type of information stored within the smartphone, as well as Pen Window, which allows users to conveniently launch apps just by drawing a square.


Then the Galaxy Note 4 and the 4th generation S Pen took it to the next level. The GALAXY Note 4’s S Pen has doubled in sensitivity, recognizing speed, tilt and rotation for a smoother, more natural brush effect to emulate writing on paper with a fountain or calligraphy pen.



The S Pen also introduces a new Smart Select feature via Air Command enables users to freely select text, then save and share content quickly and easily no matter what apps they are using; users can even piece together content from different origins, and share it at once and automatically extract daily information such as a calendar appointment, address and URL from the text selected and integrates this information into the user’s device. Moreover, S Pen made clicking and dragging content much easier allowing users to use the S Pen like a mouse.


All of the features that have been mentioned so far are all basic S Pen functions. These features alone make the S Pen of the Galaxy Note 4 the best stylus right now. Samsung has also been providing a S Pen Software Development Kit (SDK) to encourage app developers to create S Pen special apps. If you think about what developers are able to these days, the possibility of S Pen is literally endless.



*All functionality features, specifications and other product information provided in this document including, but not limited to, the benefits, design, pricing, components, performance, availability, and capabilities of the product are subject to change without notice or obligation. 




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