iPhone Life magazine

The Return of the Styli: HAND Stylus

 

Ah, I remember fondly the good old days of Windows Mobile and the precision pointing of the stylus and so many fewer typos. Then came the iPhone and a whole new generation of nose miners emerged gooping up the screen with greasy fingers and worse. I for one am tired of gummy screens and applaud the resurgence of the stylus.

Now a stylus could be nothing more than a wad of aluminum foil, but thanks to Hand Stylus there is an attractive line of styli out there with your choice of colors. The array includes six different yummy, delicious colors from a sophisticated matte finish to classy glossy polish. Colors include black, red, green orange, magenta, and blue--something for everyone.

The unit itself reminds me of a well engineered mechanical drawing pencil. The metal grip is cross-hatched for a firm hold. The pocket clip is removable in case you just want to use it on your desk. Note that the metal pocket clip adheres magnetically to the iPad Smart Cover. Push the button on the top and out pops the tip.

Perfect for writing, drawing, playing games and taking credit card signatures, the tip is great for precision pointing and works just as well on phones and tablets. If you wear gloves on cold days, you won't have to take off your gloves to use it. If you have long fingernails, your pointing can become more precise. Best of all, you won't be messing up your screen.

Each pointer comes in a handsome aluminum box rounded at both ends and a hinged lid. It makes an attractive presentation for the perfect gift. I gave one to my long-fingernailed girlfriend for her birthday, and she was thrilled with it.

The anodized aluminum hexagonal barrel can be engraved as an additional thoughtful touch for a present.

The tip is the smallest I've seen at 4 mm. Since it is a spongy material necessary for capacitive screens, you will need to replace it from time to time. Six packs of replacement tips are available for $4.95.

Each stylus will retail for $29.95. I know that may seem a bit exorbitant, but consider that a quality pen can cost several hundred dollars, and you will use this indispensible gadget a lot more than you would an expensive status symbol pen. It has a one year guarantee exclusive of the tip.

For those who illustrate, sketch or do calligraphy, the tip compresses a bit for better tracking across the screen in a single stroke. The slight resistance gives tactile feedback.

Another interesting feature is that tip rotates as it retracts so that the writing surface wears evenly.

 Please take a moment to watch an informative video about this worthwhile project: go to Kickstarter.com and type "Stylus" in the search box. You will learn that Steve King, the developer, heads up a company that creates high tech projects to support non-profit organizations such as the San Diego Zoo.

If you haven't heard about Kickstarter, it's an amazing program for raising funds to start new projects. Contributions are given freely and contributors receive no interest in the company except for the satisfaction of having helped launch a new enterprise, which presumably helps the economy.

Hand Stylus has done exceedingly well. It has attracted 6281 backers who have pledged $252,885 when the original goal was only $25,000. I've never heard of a success like this on Kickstarter. Perhaps the reason is that you do get something for your money unlike most other Kickstarter pledges.

If you donate at least $25, you will receive a stylus in your choice of color, and that's a good deal considering that the retail price is $29.95.. If you pledge $30, you can have your stylus engraved. Add an extra $5 for a six pack of tips. I've made my contribution, and I encourage you to make yours too. There's only six days left on the campaign. You can pay using your Amazon account if you wish.

To help the environment, Hand styli are produced of completely recycled materials, and the company has purchased carbon credits to offset any use of non-renewable energy. What's not to like about Hand stylus?

Production and distribution will begin about a month after the Kickstarter campaign closes. So, you can be expecting to see these exceptional, must-have devices on the market soon.

Let's hear it for clean screens!

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