New smartphones are real all-rounders. A cell phone with a pen tops it all off and can be used almost like a tablet. But does that really make sense?
Pens have long been a popular gadget when using tablets. This makes precise entries possible, drawings can also be created quickly and cleanly, and handwritten notes are easy to make. But does this also apply to smartphone use? Are cell phones with a pen really the ultimate – or just a technical gimmick?
Smartphones with pens – these providers have them in their repertoire
Smartphones with pens were trendy for a while, but today there are only a few models with that little extra. Manufacturers such as HTC, LG and Sony used to offer models including a pen, but then discontinued them. Today there are only a few providers of devices with a stylus, including Samsung. The smartphone provider from South Korea is still sticking to the use of the stylus and offers a whole range of devices with this addition, including the S23 Ultra, the Z Fold 5 and its predecessor the Z Fold 4. The manufacturer currently has one brand new model with stylus launched, the Galaxy S24 Ultra from the brand new S24 series. The Z Fold 6 is already in the starting blocks.
The S Pen from Samsung
The displays in our smartphones are getting bigger and bigger. That’s why pens are actually a good thing, because they enable faster and more precise input than is possible with a finger. Anyone who often has to draw, make handwritten notes or sign documents can tell you a thing or two about it. Nevertheless, smartphones with a pen are now hard to find. Samsung in particular has made a name for itself as a manufacturer of such devices. The provider already impressed with the Galaxy Note series with a pen as a practical extra. The so-called S-Pen is now mandatory for the Ultra models, and this also applies to the very latest model, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Ultra.
The S-Pen from Samsung has a few convincing features:
- It is integrated directly into the smartphone and can be pulled out at the touch of a finger.
- It is possible to create precise drawings, sketches and notes.
- The lines become thinner or thicker by applying pressure with the pen tip.
- You can also control presentations or videos and take photos using appropriate gestures with the pen.
- On the side of the pen there are buttons that can be used to take screenshots or photos and open apps.
Is a cell phone with a pen worth it?
Cell phones with stylus pens, especially the latest models, are expensive. Is it worth spending so much money for a small benefit? Or doesn’t it make much more sense to buy a stylus separately for your smartphone? After all, there are numerous third-party providers where interested parties can buy smartphone pens at a reasonable price. Easier said than done, because unfortunately many smartphones are not compatible with the pens. In addition, complex installation is often required, which is not always successful. If you want to buy a stylus for your smartphone, you should consider a capacitive pen. Since this only works by discharging, it can also be used with any smartphone and installation is not necessary. When buying a smartphone pen, you should also pay attention to the fact that many models need to be charged.
But if you prefer a high-end product, you can hardly avoid the S-Pen. Samsung’s S-Pen works inductively. This means that the display can differentiate between use with a pen or finger. This is practical because when typing with the S-Pen, your hand can touch the screen without any restrictions. However, the S-Pen is only available in a bundle with the corresponding Samsung smartphone.
The Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra with S-Pen
There is a lot to be said for the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra; the model was recently named the test winner among smartphones with a pen at Chip.de. The design is particularly flat and has no beveled edges, making the stylus even easier to use. The S-Pen is part of the smartphone and can be stored directly in the device. However, the Galaxy S24 Ultra, which has only been available in stores since the end of January, costs 1,449 euros – not exactly a bargain. If you want it cheaper, you can buy the device in a bundle with a cell phone contract.
Vodafone is currently running a promotion that will significantly reduce the price of the Samsung Galaxy S24 Ultra. The provider is offering a special exchange offer: All new Samsung Galaxy flagship devices can be exchanged for an old smartphone until February 29, 2024. With the re-trade program, the buyer is paid at least 500 euros if he trades in his old cell phone and concludes a contract. The exchange bonus is 240 euros, plus a residual value of at least 260 euros for the old device. If desired, the Vodafone tariff deal also includes the Galaxy S24 Ultra, which with this bonus and in conjunction with the all-net flat rate Gigamobil M only costs a one-off price of 99.90 euros.
The alternative to the Samsung: The Motorola Edge 30 Pro
If you’re not a fan of Samsung and would rather try out an alternative, you can choose the Motorola Edge 30 Pro. This is one of the few cell phones with a stylus that are currently available in stores alongside the Samsung models. However, it is already two years old and is no longer available everywhere. The stylus is also not included and must be purchased additionally. It cannot be stored on or even in the smartphone; an additional protective case with attachment options is required.
Do smartphones with pens have a future?
The question is and remains whether smartphones with pens can really establish themselves in the future; they are unlikely to gain the upper hand on the smartphone market. Tablets are currently the winners for use with pens. However, smartphone displays are also becoming larger and larger. And if you travel a lot and work primarily with your smartphone, a stylus might make sense. Smartphones are also much more handy than tablets. For people who travel a lot and have to do short work sessions every now and then, the compact smartphone with a pen is more suitable than a less portable tablet. For some, a smartphone with a stylus is a good everyday helper – but for others it may just be an unnecessary gimmick.
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