Adobe Unveils Ink and Slide Stylus and Ruler Combo for iPad

| Product News

Adobe's Mighty and Napoleon iPad stylus and ruler have finally moved from the drawing board to shipping products, although now they have new names: Ink and Slide. The Ink stylus is pressure sensitive, and the two devices work together with Adobe's Creative Cloud for accessing, storing and sharing content.

Adobe is hoping to change the stylus world with its Ink and SlideAdobe is hoping to change the stylus world with its Ink and Slide

Instead of simply being another pressure sensitive stylus, Ink is designed to help improve your drawings in conjunction with Slide. Lines that otherwise may have been imprecise become confident strokes and shapes.

Adobe turned to Adonit, the makers of the popular Jot Touch stylus, for hardware development and the two companies have been hard at work for months to bring Ink and Slide to market.

Ink and Slide were first teased over a year ago as Mighty and Napoleon, and immediately caught the attention of designers looking for something more than the iPad styluses that were already on the market. The shipping versions look much like the prototype from last year.

Adobe's new stylus works with any app, but to take full advantage of its features you'll need to turn to the brand new Adobe Sketch and Adobe Line apps, both free. Sketch does what it name implies: It's a basic drawing app, but it also include Behance support for sharing your art online. Lines focuses on precision drawings with straight edge and t-square tools.

Adobe also pushed deeper into the iOS ecosystem by updating Lightroom for the iPad to include iPhone support, and introducing Photoshop Mix. Lightroom is Adobe's professional photography organization and editing tool, and Photoshop mix turns your iPad into an image compositing and masking tool.

The SDK developers need to add Ink and Slide features to their apps is in beta now and should be available soon. Ink and Slide are sold as a set for US$199.99, and are available only in the U.S.

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Adobe is serious about being a strong player in the mobile market, and its Ink and Slide combo have the potential to turn our iPad styluses into more than replacements for our finger tips. The new stylus and ruler are also a clear sign that Adobe wants to make Creative Cloud an indispensable part of our creative world.

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I watched the live demo, and it was certainly impressive, although the cost of them is prohibitive at the moment. They mentioned opening up the API, so I’m curious if any other iOS apps will be able to use these in the future.

Jeff Gamet

I’m really excited about the prospects for new innovations in styluses thanks to Ink and Slide. The price may be high right now, but I expect it will come down over time. I’m betting Adobe is already working with select iPad app developers and that we’ll see other apps supporting Ink and Slide over the next couple months.

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