Even though the touchscreen world is moving away from styli as the march of the finger carries ever onward, QDOS has come up with a stylus that’ll respond to the iPhone’s capacitive touchscreen. If you can’t abide getting your fingers all over the touchscreen or, more likely, find your digits all too voluminous for accuracy, the QDOS Jet Pen Stylus may well be of interest.
The Jet Pen Set includes this stylus and a case that’ll both protect your iPhone and act as a holder for the Jet Pen stylus. The stylus itself is comprised of a metal tube with an angled tip made of a strange material that emulates your finger.
After much staring and poking, we couldn’t work out quite what this material was, but it’s not unlike the rubber-tipped end of a pencil. Unfortunately, this means that dragging it across the iPhone’s screen is less than entirely smooth. If you’re hoping for a navigational experience that’s as smooth as using your finger, you won’t find it here.
Equally, the Jet Pen Stylus is quite picky about how you hold it against the screen. If you don’t have the whole of the angled pad pressing against the screen, the responsiveness drops dramatically- most of your strokes simply won’t register. To an extent, this effect improves as you get to know the Jet Pen Stylus, as you learn its admittedly understandable foibles.
The problem is that, to us, it seems worse than both using your finger and the experience of using a stylus on a resistive touchscreen. Also, because the stylus ends in a pad rather than a point, it’s not necessarily any more accurate than a fingertip, which is, after all, far less large in area than the whole surface of a finger.
Nevertheless, it still has the air of a quality product. We’re a little worried that the tip may one day just pop off, but that’s probably just brought up from childhood memories of absent-mindedly ripping the eraser end of pencils off after an obligatory daydream chew. Although it’s not quite clear why, you can un-screw the other end of the stylus, from which a handy screen wiper hangs.
The case feels also like a quality item. A soft touch matt finish is used throughout, and there’s a dock-enabling removable cover at the bottom, even though all controls are already accessible with the case on. It’s still plagued by another show-stopping issue, mind- it spoils the ergonomics of the iPhone.
Any case is going to add some girth to the svelte lines of Apple’s design wonder, but the stylus holder, which runs long the right hand-side, completely changes how it feels to hold the device. Adding almost a centimetre to its width, the iPhone fits much less easily between the fingers when under its protection.
The idea of using a the stylus on the iPhone is a novel one, even if its against the designers’ intentions. Sadly, the Jet Pen Stylus doesn’t manage to pull the feat off, being too picky and not comfortable enough to be a viable alternative to the finger.
QDOS Jet Set Info
Typical Price: £29.99
Nice finish on the case
Stylus doesn’t work all that well
Case widens the iPhone too much
Verdict: Although the concept of the QDOS Jet Set- a stylus for your iPhone- is interesting, the execution doesn’t make us want to leave our fingers at home
More info: QDOS website