Pogo Connects the dots

Spoiler alert! Pogo Connect answers the stylus envy the Surface advertisements want iPad users to feel. “Our pads have a stylus.” You have always been able to use a soft-rubber stylus with the iPad, but the Pogo Connect is pressure sensitive. The Connect with the iPad is a far better tool for sketching and digital art than my Wacom tablet, which I will probably retire for good. Four Stars.

The Pogo Connect is the most recent addition to the iPad stylus options, competing with the Adonit Jot Touch and Hex3 Jaja. For serious art, it isn't the best option (I would have to recommend the Jot Touch, and I will tomorrow), but for general use and sheer convenience it rises to the top of the list.

Why would you want a pressure sensitive stylus? Truthfully, the main application is for art and design. A pressure sensitive stylus resembles the strokes of a real pencil, pen or paintbrush (within the limits of the software). If you want your sketches to look more natural, you (or the budding artist you want to gift for Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa) can't do better.

The Pogo Connect is substantially different from competitors Jaja and Jot Touch. It uses a replaceable rubber tip instead of the metal stylus. It also uses AA batteries, which means you won't need to stop work to recharge.

The strokes will vary by color and density depending on the tool selected and on how much pressure you apply with the tip. With some tools, such as the pencil, you will get some variation in color and a little in stroke. With ink you will get a huge variation in stroke, but nothing in color. With brushes the results can be striking (see the stylus comparison tomorrow).

Connecting the device to your iPad is a snap if you use the Pogo Connect application. Once you launch the app your iPad will recognize the Connect as soon as you turn it on, without having to set it up in the control panel. The pen runs on a AA battery, and shuts down after disuse, so you can use it many times and leave it in your drawer for weeks without problem.

The tip is soft rubber, similar to most iPad capacitive stylus designs. This means that it will wear out eventually. The tip is connected magnetically and it sticks well, so it is tough to pull out when you need to replace it. This also means the tip is hard to lose accidentally.

The following sketches were created with a soft-lead pencil tool in Procreate. The sketch on the list was created with a standard stylus. The sketch on the right with the Pogo Connect. You won't see much variation in stroke size, since pencil lead isn't as malleable as other tools, but you can see a definite difference in density and color.

At one time product sketches showed tips with different points (fine points and thick points) but these have been removed from the site. As best I can tell, the pen currently only offers one tip shape and size. I would like to see the other sizes eventually released.

The list of apps available to Pogo Connect seems slightly longer than the apps for competitors. I think that gap will narrow with time, but for now you will probably have more opportunities to use the Connect. Check the website for the list of available apps.

The pen is far from perfect. The barrel is thicker than the Jot Touch, which makes it a little harder to work with, but this is due to the battery. The Pogo Connect also claims to have more levels of sensitivity than the Touch, but in my experience the Touch is far more sensitive.

That being said, the pen itself is more reliable and easier to maintain than the Touch, and it's $20 cheaper. The battery makes the pen more reliable when you need a stylus immediately. (The Touch needs to be charged frequently). For casual use, I think people will be happier with the Pogo Connect than the Touch. Professional artists will want the Touch, but I would still recommend having a Connect for a backup and travel.

Jenny Manytoes rates the Pogo Connect

Jenny Manytoes would purr next to the Pogo Connect, especially for general users. It's sturdy and durable, needs far less maintenance, and it does a reasonably good job. That being said, I'm still waiting to see a five star stylus.

The Jenny Manytoes Rating System

Jenny Manytoes, our polydactyl cat
  • When Jenny makes biscuits on a product she thinks she's in heaven.
  • When Jenny purrs over a product she's very happy.
  • When Jenny naps next to a product it's okay with her.
  • When Jenny bunches her tail she can live with a product, but she has higher expectations.
  • When Jenny leaves it in the litter box….I don't think I need to explain this one.

About Phillip T Stephens

Phillip T. Stephens disappeared into the Bermuda Triangle twenty years before he was born, creating a time travel paradox so confusing it remains unspoken between physicists and sci-fi writers to this day. Follow @stephens_pt
This entry was posted in 4 Stars - Purr, Art and design and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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