Having a touchscreen tablet opens up a bunch of possibilities, however using only your fingers to create a masterpiece is like a toddler painting a Rembrandt piece – an unlikely feat unless you’re sporting some serious artistic gifts. The majority of people out there may not need the finer touch of a writing utensil, but with programs like ArtRage and Photoshop Touch out in the wild a stylus like Wacom’s Bamboo Stylus Pocket is a clever idea.
First thing to talk about (aside from the ‘other’ thing that I’ll eventually cover) is a design which unmistakably exudes a uniquely modern look that stands out among the Solo and Duo variants. The body is a silver metallic body with a dimpled black rubber grip with color-customizable surrounds, while the the spongy 6mm conductive rubber nib makes up the business end of the stylus. The grip area also serves as the retractable body that extends from a compact 3.52″ to a well-balanced 4.65″, dutifully earning its pocket credentials. Finally to round out the ingenuity factor the cap that twists on the Stylus Pocket can be fitted in a 3.5mm headphone jack, not only does keep your accessory close to your iPad but it looks neat as well, until you eventually lose it. Beyond that though the “Bamboo” logo is the only visible distinction of the Wacom brand.
If form over function is your preference then the Pocket has both in spades compared to other choices out there. the girth and weight (16.4g) was fairly light and comfortable to hold even after a couple hours, it also goes without saying that the stylus performed exactly like we expected it to without too much of a fuss. performance was equally responsive when we tried the Bamboo on a number of devices such the iPad, iPhone, Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1, and even a Galaxy S II smartphone; it’s certainly a lot more accurate and precise than using your finger for handwriting and doodles as long the apps (we used Bamboo Paper, Galaxy Note App, and Photoshop Touch) themselves are up to the task.
Performance lag during our time was an occasional issue no matter the method of input and can probably be faulted more to the apps and devices themselves, but sporadic delays simply felt more evident with the Bamboo and made drawing finer details more of a challenge.
For those who were curious the Stylus Pocket (or any current styli for that matter) isn’t capable of pressure sensitivity, but this is more of a obvious reality than an unexpected disappointment.
Remember that ‘other’ thing I mentioned earlier? The Bamboo Stylus Pocket is a great answer for the serious user who feels the need to be artistic away from their regular computer but the price of enjoying this privilege starts at a relatively steep $35, and this digitizer sits right in the middle of the Bamboo styli family. There’s no getting around the fact that the iOS family of devices weren’t intended for stylus use, but Wacom’s latest effort comes closest to making the two work like they should, despite the added hardware. However, if you like the instant portability and heavy user of the various art or note-taking apps then Wacom’s pocket-friendly stylus is probably the smartest choice out of the bunch.
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