aPen USA (www.apenusa.com) has released a new addition to their brilliant line of smart pens. The previous being compatible with PC’s only is now a thing of the past. You can now take aPen further as it is now fully connectable (via Bluetooth) and usable with Blackberry and Android Devices.
“Write on paper, and show on your smart phone screen, real-time! Or write and save them without connecting to your smart phone or computer. You can write on images, JPEG, MS Office applications, Outlook and share with everyone. With Bluetooth feature, you can sync files to your Blackberry or Android phone and share to the world in seconds.” (www.apenusa.com)
You first need to download the mNote app from either the Android Market Place or Blackberry App World (no cost).
Then it was time to test it. It was first tested on a Blackberry Bold. As for Android, I do not have an Android Phone, so I tested it on my Android Tablet running Android Honeycomb.
After the eventless download and install of the mNote app, we tested the pen.
In a word ?? WOW. It has cut out the middle man/special paper and allows you to write on any regular (lined or blank) piece of paper as it attaches its ultra portable sensor to a few sheets or an entire notebook. I started taking random notes (including parts of this article) and it came right onto the devices’ screen. The option to save meant I could send it where ever I wanted to within cyberspace.
The utilities that come with it are by far, the best “pen” type packages I have seen and tested.
Not only does it come with a drawing and writing app, but also handwriting to text app that seems to be the best I have ever tested. As a sidebar, I have been told my handwriting is so atrocious that it would propel me to the top of the Harvard Med school. It took me less than 2 minutes for this paragraph to go from brain to pen to paper, and less than 30 seconds for it to be converted to text with only 3 errors due to my poor writing.
While a smart pen is a smart pen, etc, there are a couple of features that set this one up for greatness;
- You are not tied down to a specific brand of paper. If you have a $1.99 notebook from your local office super store, that is all you will ever need. You simply clip the receiver on and start writing. Then at a later point simply plug the receiver into your computer and upload all of the notes.
- You can take live notes by plugging the receiver into your PC as well.
As for the additional software that came with it, Installation and setup was a snap. The cd that it came with easily installed on Windows 7. There is no wait time for familiarization, as it is the same shape, size, and feel of a typical pen. This is not a typical pen though.
Black and white writing is where it “draws the line”. You can (in mid stream) change color, pen size, etc to really brighten or highlight to get your point across. Better yet. Hook it (as I did) to your daughters sketch pad and let them doodle away. You will not only have a masterpiece to print out, but one that can be saved in an electronic format; pdf, jpg, etc. that you can post, send or who knows, even publish.
The perfect user for this pen is the student (from k-8 and beyond), the college student, the home maker and of course the executive. It comes with a small box that allows you to store the pen, the sensor and the USB cord so you can easily take it along.
You can no longer say the dog ate my homework or oops, the notes are at home, because they will always be with you. Learn more at www.apenusa.com.