iPad Acessory Review: Hard Candy’s Candy Stylus and Pen

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I loved working on a Tablet PC. The ability to “ink” on one– that is, create digital ink by using a stylus to write or draw on the screen– made taking notes quick and easy. I don’t mind the trade-offs I had to make once I moved to the iPad since it is lighter, runs longer, is silent, never gets warm and… it is Apple, but every now and then I miss “inking”.

Fortunately more and more iPad apps are improving the experience of writing on the iPad’s screen. They are making the ink “flow” more smoothly and many are adding palm rejection to their apps so that you won’t create stray marks on the screen each time your palm or wrist touch it. As a result, the need for a good stylus that works with a capacitive screen is more and more important. Hard Candy recently released their version, the Candy Stylus and Pen. It is a rather interesting writing implement. Let’s take a quick look…

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From Hard Candy-

Hard Candy Cases’ iPad Stylus offers capability and style other iPad Stylus don’t. Slide the cap off of one side to reveal a stylus that is compatible with your iPad, iPod Touch, or iPhone. Flip the Candy Pen around to sign those important business contracts in luxurious style. The iPad Stylus is more than just a writing instrument; it is a masterpiece.

Features:

Lustrous, chrome finished body

Compatible with the iPad, iPhone 4, and iPod Touch

Secondary ink pen function with refillable reservoir

Durable, quality construction

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The pen has a nice, glossy finish. It weighs 4.2 oz and measures 5.6″ long. That makes it perfect for someone who likes a pen with some heft. I’m one of them.

The polished chrome finish feels nice in the hand but can be a bit slippery. The Hard Candy logo is embossed in the slightly rougher and less slippery middle band. Elana thought the logo looked terrible there. I didn’t mind it at all.

The pen is completely round so it does roll if placed on a flat smooth surface. I’ve never felt this to be an issue but I do know that when Livescribe designed their second generation SmartPen they made a design change to avoid such rolling. Apparently they had received numerous complaints and a request for a design that did not roll.

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If you pop the cap off you will find a replaceable ballpoint ink cartridge. The company decided to design the pen around Parker ballpoint cartridges so replacement cartridges should be easy to find and inexpensive.

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What makes this pen unusual is that if you pop the cap on the other side of the pen off it reveals a tip that is designed to be recognized by a capacitive screen. The tip is relatively wide and made of a soft “mushy” material. It works fairly well…

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(I flunked spelllling and penmanship in 4th grade.)

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This is what the pen looks like with both caps off.

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And here is a closeup of the two different tips.

The Candy Stylus and Pen is a neat idea. The ability to carry one pen that can be used with both the iPad AND paper is a nice convenience and a great way to carry just one pen. Although I expected it to be far too slippery to use I have not had an issue gripping the smooth polished chrome. That noted, truth be told, the experience of inking on an iPad still doesn’t come close to the experience of inking on a Tablet PC OS using a Livescribe Echo SmartPen to create digital notes. That’s not a fault of the pen, however just a limitation of a device that uses a capacitive screen. If you DO want to ink on an iPad… this is a great option.

The Candy Stylus and Pen is available directly from the Hard Candy website.

MSRP: $34.95

What I Like: Nice heft to the pen; convenient that one pen works with both the iPad and paper; uses standard Parker ballpoint cartridges; sturdy and should last quite a while

What Needs Improvement: A bit on the slick side due to the polished chrome; company logo may not be appreciated by everyone

About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him.

3 Comments on "iPad Acessory Review: Hard Candy’s Candy Stylus and Pen"

  1. iPad Acessory Review: Hard Candy’s Candy Stylus and Pen http://eqent.me/c1R1vr

  2. iPad Acessory Review: Hard Candy’s Candy Stylus and Pen http://eqent.me/c1R1vr

  3. V. cool! Reminds me of Fisher Space Pen. Via @SkyGrid – iPad Acessory Review: Hard Candy's Candy Stylus and Pen http://bit.ly/bFCSKQ

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