Smartpens are the new major trend that has the business world fired up. They’re still fairly young, but their capabilities are already vast and they’re still growing.

What the majority of smartpens do is capture the notes that you are writing down and translate them into a digital format. Additional possible capabilities, however, vary by brand and model.

IOGEAR Mobile Digital Scribe

This smartpen was the first to emerge onto the market. Although it doesn’t have some of the bells and whistles that you may find in some of the newer pens, it can perform all of the basic functions.

It captures and stores everything you write and doesn’t require a special notepad or piece of paper. This makes it especially easy to upload your notes to your computer. If you already have the Mobile Digital Scribe attached to your computer it will automatically transfer any text and drawings directly to the screen.

Logitech IO2 Digital Pen

The Logitech smartpen has a number of the basic functions that you may find in the Mobile Digital Scribe. It transcribes your notes and can save them in various different file types.

You can then search for words and phrases by date, file type, or file name. You can add items to your calendar merely by writing them down. The Logitech IO2 Digital Pen doesn’t work on any surface like the IOGEAR pen, but it works with Post-It notes and Franklin Covey’s iScribe software and digital planning pages.

Livescribe Echo

The Livescribe Echo smartpen is by far the most technologically sophisticated of all the smartpens out there. It not only transcribes everything you write down, it also records audio and converts the recording into a number of different audio file types.

The Livescribe Echo now has a feature called Pencast, which plays back your audio and synchronizes it with the notes you took. You can play these Pencasts with your iPad, iPhone or iPod which makes the files super easy to share. This is great for any individual who wants to share the contents of a meeting with their coworkers but doesn’t have the time to tell them about it or transcribe the whole thing.

These pens are pretty great tools that can be ideal for just about anyone. They take a great deal of time out of transcription and make remembering specifics of a meeting or conversation much easier.

To check out a review of the Livescribe Echo, click here.


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