Wacom Bamboo Ink is a smart stylus for Windows tablets and it's optimised for Windows ink. What smart means is you can pair this with your Windows tablet and call up shortcuts using the shortcut buttons on the pen.
This stylus is only compatible with selected Windows tablets. You can check the compatibility list on Wacom's website to see if your product is supported.
The stylus also comes with some replacement tips. Two hard tips and one textured tip.
The default tip on the stylus is the textured tip. This provides extra friction which can give you more control. This is great for those who want to use the stylus for drawing. But for writing, it's best to swap to the hard tips which can write faster.
The tip remover is built into the side of the small carrying tip case.
This stylus is powered by an AAAA battery, the same one used in the Surface Pen. Battery life should last for months.
The pen is always on so you don't have to switch it on in order to use it.
In addition to the two side buttons, there's also a button on the back. There's also a small light indicator just below that button to let you know that it's in Bluetooth pairing process.
The textured triangular body makes this stylus really comfortable to hold. Build quality is fantastic.
This is an active stylus that supports pressure sensitivity and palm rejection. When the stylus hovers close to the screen, the cursor will appear.
Unfortunately when drawing diagonal lines slowly, it suffers from significant jitter effects.
For handwriting and note taking purposes, it works well enough, just not for drawing.
In the handwriting samples below, the top was written with Bamboo Ink and the bottom with Surface Pen.
Wacom Bamboo Paper
All the note taking apps that I've used above are able to capture my handwriting relatively well.
As mentioned earlier, you don't need to pair the stylus in order to use it. However, if you want to use the shortcuts, you have to pair it via Bluetooth first. To pair, just turn on Bluetooth discovery on the Windows tablet, and connect. That's it.
To customise the shortcut buttons, you have to go into Windows Pen settings. Unfortunately, customisation of the buttons is limited to only the default functions available. For example, you can't set specific shortcuts. For other button customisation you may have to rely on the apps you use, but even so, customisation is limited.
But generally speaking, the buttons and functionality works well enough. With handwriting apps, you can click to toggle eraser mode. Sometimes you have undo. If you have an app you use often, you can assign a button to launch that app (by default it's OneNote).
Good things I like about this stylus are the textured tip, solid build quality and nice design, replacement tips included, and the three shortcut buttons.
Things I don't like would be the jitter when drawing diagonal lines slowly and limited customisation for the buttons.
Depending on where you can buying this stylus from, especially in Europe, it's going to be quite pricey. The current price is around US $40 - 50, but in Europe it's even more.
If you're just looking for a stylus for writing, or just a general purpose stylus, I recommend the cheaper Adonit Ink instead.
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