Sep 21, 2005

Wacom PenPartner2 Announced

Wacom Press Release

PenPartner2 provides a comfortable input solution and allows handwritten annotations to be added in Microsoft Office

Wacom, the leading manufacturer of pen tablets and interactive pen displays, today announces PenPartner2 – an ultra-slim and compact pen tablet for use with a notebook. It perfectly combines a contemporary, ergonomic design with reliable functionality and is aimed at business professionals and business travellers. PenPartner2 is ideal for the comfortable navigation of PC applications and with the JustWrite Office software included, it is perfect for adding hand-written notes in Microsoft Office documents and personalising emails with signatures.

PenPartner2, the successor to PenPartner launched in April 2004 - Wacom’s first tablet designed specifically for use with laptops - reflects the current style trends for notebooks on the market today. Its design is sleek and professional looking, and both the tablet and pen come in black with anthracite accents. It also has a smaller footprint than its predecessor of 146mm x 150.6mm, which provides improved portability and requires less desk space.

Ergonomically designed tablet and pen
PenPartner2 enables notebook users to work more comfortably than when using an integrated device such as a touchpad or trackpoint. The pen has shown to be the most natural input device. It is also far more accurate due to Wacom’s absolute positioning, meaning that the pen tablet exactly mirrors the notebook screen and allows the pen to navigate with short and precise movements.

Wacom has improved the ergonomics of both the tablet and the pen. The tablet itself is flatter, allowing the user’s hand to lie flat on the surface, which is more relaxing for tendons and muscles when working with the pen over long periods.

The pen now features a rubberised grip area for increased comfort and boasts an improved ergonomic shape, making it easier to handle. There are now two separate buttons on the pen, which are set as right and double-click by default. The top button works as double-click, which supersedes tapping twice with the pen tip on the tablet.
Even the USB cable has been improved in terms of usability, as PenPartner2 comes with a slim and short cable.

The pen works on the tablet using Wacom’s patented ‘penabled’ technology, which means that it is cordless and battery-free and therefore maintenance free. The technology guarantees more reliable functionality compared to other input solutions.

Pen tablet software
PenPartner2 comes with JustWrite Office, which is a plug-in to Microsoft Office. Designed for use with Wacom’s pen tablets, the software, in combination with a pen input device, enables the user to directly add handwritten notes, comments, figures and signatures to every Word, Excel and PowerPoint document, just like using pen and paper. Passages in text can also be highlighted and sticky notes pasted into documents.

Wacom has recently bought JustWrite Office from Alphatek Global PTE Ltd., including all rights. This enables Wacom to design and optimise the software to take full advantage of Wacom pen tablets and interactive pen tablets.

PenPartner2 is also compatible with Adobe Acrobat 6.0 or higher and allows users to benefit from the features of ’Advanced Commenting‘ - for example to annotate handwritten text or highlight words or sentences in PDFs.

System requirements
The pen tablet is PC compatible and runs on Windows 98SE, ME, 2000 or XP.

For JustWrite Office: Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook 2000/XP/2003.

Pricing and availability
The new PenPartner2 pen tablet is priced at £34.99 (including VAT). It will be available from mid September 2005 in the UK from Computers Unlimited and key retail shops. The product carries a two year warranty.