Review: Ten One Design Pogo Sketch
At the end of January, after noting Steve Jobs' famous and memorably amusing introduction of the original iPhone two years earlier, we reviewed Ten One Design's Pogo Stylus, a $15 tool that did what Jobs had pooh-poohed: it offered a simple alternative to using your finger to interact with the special touchscreens found in the iPhone, iPhone 3G, and iPod touch. The value of the special foam-tipped tool was obvious for some users, particularly those with long fingernails or in other conditions where they couldn't use their fingers to interact with the screen.
This week, we’ve been playing with Ten One’s Pogo Sketch, a modestly different version of Pogo Stylus that is most generously understood as device agnostic: it is longer than Stylus, and the only major change is the presence of an integrated hard plastic pocket clip on the side furthest from the eraser head-sized, pliable foam tip. Ten One shipped the Pogo Stylus with an iPhone 3G-matching body clip, and developed body clips for other models, letting users without cases carry pogo alongside their devices. Sketch eliminates those clips in favor of letting you carry around Sketch like a pen.
Our issue with Sketch is that it doesn’t really improve the prior Pogo Stylus experience in any major way, costs the same, and actually felt a little less sensitive on our devices’ touchscreens than the Stylus we’d previously tested. We’re not sure whether this was due to the foam, which seemed just a little softer than the prior version’s—possibly an unintentional manufacturing difference between units—or diminished leverage from the longer metal Sketch pipe. In any case, whereas we’d have hoped that Sketch would offer more precise or easier use of the touchscreen, we found that it didn’t.
Overall, if you’re in need of a stylus for your iPhone 3G or iPod touch, we’d sooner recommend the prior Pogo Stylus, as the newer version’s added size, shirt clip, and less precise top didn’t add anything we’d consider to be more worthy of the $15 asking price. That having been said, if you’re really concerned about shirt-pocketing the stylus and prefer a clip system that’s device-agnostic, Pogo Sketch isn’t bad; we’d just expect more from a pen-styled tool.