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Microsoft acquires slate’s stylus tech from N-trig, Surface 3 pre-orders begin


Microsoft [NASDAQ:MSFT] has announced the acquisition of stylus technology from N-trig, used in Surface Pro 3 and Surface 3 tablets. The tablet launched on March 31, began pre-orders on the same day and has started shipping.microsoft-surface-3--8

Microsoft  had announced that the tablet would be launched on May 5, and would be available in 26 markets by May 7. Israeli-based N-trig, Microsoft’s longtime partner and supplier owns the patent for the digital stylus and the technology is used by the company and other OEM partners. The latest version of N-trig pen is being used in Surface Pro 3 and Surface 3, after it replaced Wacom as the supplier. Initially, drawing professionals were uncomfortable with the pen, but later it was seen as a better option.

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“Today’s investment is another step that will let us push that innovation forward,” said Microsoft in a blog post.

Microsoft stated that it cant wait to show what they will deliver for the Surface fans in the future. Microsoft Surface Pro 3 users already has a fan following for its apps like Adobe’s Creative Suite and Autodesk’s SketchBook, with the enhanced experience of the digital pen. The tech could undergo more improvements as Microsoft will endure that the pen will deliver to the niche creative audience.

The acquisition also marks the increasing competition for improvements in touch-based devices. Apple has already added Force Touch and Taptic tech, and will further improve pressure sensitive input options in future iOS devices. Rumors indicate that Apple could also bring in an advanced stylus for the upcoming iPad Pro device.

The latest acquisition is a $30 million deal, and is only for the pen technology and patents. Some employees from N-trig will be transferred to Microsoft as a part of the deal. Surface 3 is priced at $499, and includes a digital pen, and a Surface type cover that turns the tablet into a laptop.

Check out the Surface pen in action:

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About Anirudh Madhav

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A movie buff, a bookworm, and a compulsive doodler. All posts by Anirudh

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