The Surface Pro may not have received a huge upgrade since its last iteration, but that can't be said for the Surface Pen. Microsoft has offset some of the disappointment with a major improvement in the accessories department.
The new Surface Pen comes with plenty of bells and whistles, but the main one is an increase in pressure sensitivity. It's gone from just 1,024 levels to 4,096, a huge boost that's bound to help artists.
There will also be a reduction in latency, Microsoft saying it's now “virtually imperceptible”. The result is a seamless, responsive feeling that rivals Apple's pencil.
However, those advancements come just as much from the new hardware as the Pen itself. More interesting for current owners is its new tilt features.
Essentially, you can tilt the pen while you draw without any with hand tracking or accuracy issues. This will make shading considerably easier and generally increase the quality of life. Though pressure sensitivity won't be supported on older devices, tilt will come via a Windows Update.
Owners will also benefit from the variety of new colors, creating a more personalized aspect. The Pen will be available in platinum, black, burgundy, and cobalt blue, matching the Surface Laptops.
Surface Pen Specifications
Of course, there are also some more minor changes, primarily in dimensions and weight. Here's the full list of specifications so you can compare:
- Compatibility: Surface Studio, Surface Laptop, Surface Book, Surface Pro, Surface Pro 4, Surface Pro 3, Surface 3.
- Weight: 0.4 lbs
- Connections: Bluetooth 4.0
- Buttons: Barrel button and tail eraser
- Colors: Platinum, Black, Burgundy, Cobalt Blue
- Battery: 1 triple A (included)
- Warranty: 1-year limited hardware
- Dimensions — 145 mm(length) x 10.1 mm (width) x 9.5mm (height)
The Surface Pen will also work in tandem with Surface Dial functionality, as well as the Surface Pro's new 160-degree tilt. Together, they almost create a mini Surface Studio and that could be very useful for creators who travel.