Apple in 2007: Who wants a stylus? Apple in 2010: We want a stylus!

Patent reveal shows Cupertino not so averse to pens after all

Apple is breaking with the beliefs of founder Steve Jobs when it comes to the stylus, if a recently-granted patent is any indication.

The company on Tuesday was revealed to have been granted a patent for a stylus-like pen device that could be used with a mobile device or desktop PC.

According to the US Patent and Trademark Office filing Apple would create a pen that could record movements and then transmit both images and text to the third-party device.

According to the patent, filed as an application in January of 2010 and published this week, the stylus would be able to track the movements in three dimensions while syncing with the computer.

"The stylus tracks its different positions while a user is writing or drawing and then either stores the data to be uploaded later or transmits the data simultaneously to a computing device," Apple says in the application

"The computing device then displays the images and text drawn on the surface. The computing device may be located anywhere, as long as it is able to communicate with the stylus, and be able to display the written text or images."

Such connected styluses and 'smart pens' have existed in various forms for a number of years, but this is the first such rumblings we have heard from Apple, a company that has historically been vocal critics of the stylus concept.

Co-founder Steve Jobs was notoriously critical of the stylus as it had existed with tablets and smartphones. When he introduced the first iPhone in 2007, Jobs quipped to the Macworld audience that "nobody wants a stylus."

Youtube Video

The Apple boss would later double down on that sentiment, telling biographer Walter Isaacson about his philosophy towards tablet design: "As soon as you have a stylus, you're dead."

Jobs passed away in 2011, one year after Apple filed for the patent. ®

Similar topics


Send us news

Other stories you might like