Last weekend I upgraded my HTC One for a Samsung Galaxy Note 3. It was the first time I had owned a “phablet” and also the first time I’d had a device with a stylus since using a Palm Pilot my first year in college (which, at the risk of aging myself, was 2002.)
The night I bought the phone, I was quick to show off its beautiful display and light weight for its size to friends. People marveled over it and the way it made their iPhone screens seem minuscule in comparison. Then I pulled out the S-Pen stylus on the Galaxy Note, and the tone of my friends changed. They mocked.
“Nice stylus, dweeb. What is this, 1999?”
Yes, the S-Pen, the single biggest differentiating feature of the Galaxy Note series over other phablets, was the source of humor for my friends, but it didn’t take me long to realize that the S-Pen enables perhaps the best reason to buy a Galaxy Note: Snapchat.
I had just downloaded Snapchat for the first time in a few months. Having given up on using the service last fall, a friend encouraged me to get back on the service. As I did, I quickly got into the workflow of taking a snap, and then drawing funny pictures on the photo with my finger.
But then I realized: I don’t need to use my finger for this. I can use my S-Pen. I pulled the S-Pen out of its holster at the base of the Galaxy Note 3 and with precision my finger could never dream of giving, starting doodling on my snaps.
Yes, I can use the S-Pen to write notes accurately in my own handwriting. Yes I can use the S-Pen to navigate around my device. There are lots of things I can do with the S-Pen, but the best thing, the one that I’ll be quick to show friends the next time they make fun of my stylus, is use it with Snapchat.