Logitech’s new MX Ink stylus might be a dream art tool for your Meta Quest headset

Logitech has recently unveiled its first mixed reality stylus, and it's exclusive to the Meta Quest series. Known as the MX Ink, it's designed to give people a more precise way to create and draw when wearing a Meta headset. While you can utilize the native controllers for content creation, they simply don’t offer the same level of accuracy as a stylus. 

One of the first things you’ll notice looking at the MX Ink is it’s quite large, resembling a marker more than a pen. It measures 6.46 x 0.72 inches (64 mm x 18.2 mm) and weighs a little over an ounce (28 grams). 

By comparison, the Apple Pencil Pro measures 6.53 x 0.35 inches (166 mm x 8.9 mm) and weighs 0.68 ounces (19.15 grams). Logitech’s MX Ink has four buttons in total: three near the front and one in the back.  

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The frontmost button lets you grab objects in the mixed reality space to drag around, while the middle option allows users to alter the pen’s pressure sensitivity. Behind that is an Options button for configuring the stylus. Lastly, the button all the way at the end gives access to the headset’s Meta menu.

Logitech claims they developed the MX Ink to be “optimized for precision” as it reportedly has “low-latency on par with Meta Quest controllers.” Thanks to the haptic feedback, the stylus offers an immersive experience meant to mimic what it is to use an actual pen on paper.

Mode of operation

The MX Ink works under two modes of operation. First is 2D Tableau, which allows Meta Quest owners to use the stylus on a flat surface when drawing. It’s unknown if the mode works on any flat surface or if you need the MX Mat accessory.

Logitech’s demo shows someone illustrating on a wooden table, but the sheet of paper is sitting on the mat – not the natural surface. The mat appears crucial, but the same video shows a woman drawing on a canvas. 

Or perhaps she’s using the other operation mode – 3D Sculpting. This allows you to freely create just by drawing in the air. The same demo displays multiple use cases, from building a house in a 3D environment to tracing the outline of what appears to be a snowboarding boot.

Other notable features include swappable tips and a seven-hour battery life. You can recharge it by plugging it in using a USB-C cable or purchasing the MX Inkwell combo to get a charging dock for the stylus. 

Supporting apps

The company states you can use the MX Ink and the paired Quest controllers simultaneously, and you won’t be forced to disconnect them. It’s important to note that the stylus is only compatible with the Meta Quest 2 and Quest 3 headsets. Logitech told RoadtoVR it won’t work on the Quest Pro, and we've reached out to the company for comment, as they didn’t explain why that support is missing.

Additionally, the pen doesn’t work across all of the Quest library; just a handful of art apps. This includes Gravity Sketch, ShapesXR, and Arkio for now, but it’s possible we could see more added to the list. Logitech is offering third-party developers the opportunity to integrate MX Ink into their apps by applying for a developer kit. 

The MX Ink launches in late September 2024 for $ 129.99 or $ 169.99 for the Inkwell combo. You can sign up to receive notifications letting you know when it’s available for purchase.

In the meantime, check out TechRadar's list of the best VR headsets for 2024.

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Windows 11 just got a huge new feature for the stylus, finally catching up with Apple’s iPad

Windows 11 has implemented a major change for those who use a stylus, allowing for writing directly in the operating system’s interface and menus – though this is still in testing right now.

The move comes in preview build 23481 in the Dev Channel, where Windows Ink has been bolstered to allow for writing with a pen directly into, say, the search box in Windows 11.

The eventual goal, Microsoft notes in its blog post introducing the preview build, is to make it so you can write anywhere in Windows 11 with your pen. A further change has been applied to increase the accuracy of handwriting recognition, and also to bring in a ‘scratch out’ gesture to allow you to quickly edit (delete) text.

The catch is that so far this feature only supports English (US), but Microsoft assures us more languages are in the pipeline.

On top of this, build 23481 tweaks File Explorer to remove a bunch of outdated folder options. This is part of cleaning up this section of the interface ahead of a major revamp which is inbound for File Explorer, as you may have seen.

Finally, Microsoft has introduced a new Focus Session widget which allows users to quickly trigger (or halt) a session from the widget panel. And naturally, there’s the usual raft of minor tweaks, fixes, and known issues with this preview build as detailed in the full blog post.


Analysis: Playing catchup with Apple

The ability to write directly in the interface throughout Windows 11 is obviously going to be a major boon, but it’s a feature that is very much playing catchup with Apple. You may recall that Apple brought in its similar Scribble functionality with the Apple Pencil in iPadOS 14, which was released three years ago – so Microsoft has been slow to come to parity in this respect.

Not every Windows 11 tester will see the new Windows Ink capability either, as it’s a limited rollout to begin with, as Microsoft gauges early feedback. There are a number of known issues with the feature right now. (If you want to turn it on, you’ll find it in Settings > Bluetooth and devices > Pen and Windows Ink, where there’s a ‘Shell Handwriting’ option – though not for everyone yet, as noted).

Speaking of phased feature rollouts, preview build 23481 witnesses the completion of a few of these. That includes ‘never combined’ mode for the taskbar, and the ability to tear out (or merge) File Explorer tabs, both of which are now available to all Windows Insiders in the Dev channel.

For us it’s great to see ‘never combined’ making good progress in testing, so surely that’ll be in the mix for the release version of Windows 11 later this year (and there’s every chance the same will be true for the new Windows Ink feature).

Via XDA Developers

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Motorola’s upcoming flagship phone may come with its own stylus

Rumors of a flagship Motorola phone are gathering pace – and a newly leaked picture potentially showing off the handset suggests that the flagship is going to come with its own integrated stylus.

That's as per a tweet from well-known tipster Evan Blass, who has also previously suggested Motorola Edge Plus as a possible name for whatever is in the pipeline.

There's certainly room for a flagship phone at the top of the Motorola range. The Lenovo-owned brand has focused on budget models in recent years, including handsets like the Motorola One Zoom.

This new upcoming phone could change all that – details are thin on the ground at the moment, but we have been hearing talk of a premium Motorola phone for several months now.

Motorola Edge Plus

The only tidbit of information that's leaked out so far, besides the image you see above, is that the phone is going to be available on Verizon in the US. That leaves a lot of gaps still to be filled in.

For the time being Motorola is concentrating on getting its revamped Motorola Razr handset out of the door, with preorders set to be shipped in the first week of February. The folding clamshell certainly has high-end looks, but not high-end specs.

The Moto Z2 Force launched in 2017 is the most recent Motorola phone that could claim to have flagship-level specs, but since then the Moto lines haven't been going head-to-head with the top iPhones, Galaxy phones, and Pixels.

That could soon change – and a stylus is one way of getting a premium phone to stand out. Aside from the Galaxy Note line, very few phones offer a built-in stylus, so it would be another selling point for whatever Motorola is planning next.

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