Ah, the stylus. The unsung hero of professionals, writers, artists, and those with clumsy fingers everywhere, and also the preferred tool of yesteryear when it came to navigating the small, pressure-sensitive touch screens that came before the infinitely better multi-touch displays that we currently use today. It’s because of these displays that the original need for a stylus, at least in for phones, pretty much became obsolete. Sure, you can purchase a stylus as an accessory to use with your smartphone or tablet, but for the most part you won’t see a stylus come with your phone (and often times your tablet, for that matter), and even then the styluses that can work with your device usually end up having a mediocre performance at best - unless you happen to have a device such as the Galaxy Note or the Surface Pro, where an advanced and more efficient type of stylus was designed for use with the device (S Pen or Surface Pen, respectively).
Because popular devices like these exist, it would seem that the idea of a stylus isn’t completely obsolete after all. Even with multi-touch displays, there are good reasons for people to want to use a stylus with the phones or tablets (especially considering many phones are the size of tablets). However, one company whom many thought would never get on board with a specialized stylus might not actually be so opposed to the idea after all.
Apple, a company who was led by very opinionated CEO Steve Jobs for many years, is the company in question. The late Steve Jobs is notorious for talking about a lot of things people should never expect to see out of an Apple product. However, nothing was set in stone as the evolution of Apple products have proved time and time again that Jobs' firm beliefs on certain features and designs are subject to change. No videos on the iPod? Videos on the iPod. 3.5-inch iPhone screen forever? Nope. Try 4-inch, 4.7-inch, and 5.5-inch display. Finally, we have Jobs’ statement where “if you see a stylus, they blew it” when it comes to tablets. And yet here we are, discussing the very possibility that Apple might create a specialized stylus of their for the rumored larger iPad, the “iPad Pro”.
Regardless of what Jobs has said in the past, times have changed. Perhaps if a phone or a tablet depended entirely on a stylus, then it could be considered a failure of sorts. However, just having a specialized stylus available as an alternative accessory? I don’t think that’s something that anybody would necessarily complain about. It’s an additional option for the user, and a useful one at that. Whether it’s for note-taking, business matters, a quick doodle, a professional sketch or drawing, presentations, or faster/easier multi-tasking, a stylus today has plenty of uses.
And with the iPad being one of the most popular tablets on the market, I don’t see why Apple can’t make use of adding a stylus accessory of their own.
I don’t think it’s necessary in order to keep the iPad interesting by any means, but I do think that it’s one of those additions that could only help. The source who came up with the prediction that Apple may include a stylus with the iPad Pro also mentioned that he didn’t think it would be something that Apple would include with the iPad Pro in order to save users who don’t necessarily want a stylus the added cost. So while Apple may very well be developing a stylus of its own for the iPad, they might not be trying to shove the product down anybody’s throat. It would simply be an extra option that users would have, and I feel that that’s just one of those decisions that can’t really go wrong.
I’m surprised that so many people have made a big deal about it at this point, mostly because of what Jobs has stated in the past. But Jobs’ word has never really been... you know, dogma, even if some people treat it as such. Clearly, the future changes things, and in this case is one of those “history repeating itself” scenarios. Styluses have a purpose in this industry, there’s nothing shameful about that. In my opinion, if Apple were to take the route that the source claims it might, it would really be going about adding a stylus the right way. If you want it, you buy it; if you don’t, you don’t.
Is it really that big of a deal if it happens?