Surface Dial - the next generation input device
A few days ago, Microsoft launched its all-new desktop PC, Surface Studio, under that Surface family. Many would think that this is a direct competition to Apple’s Mac but we suppose that it’s never a match for it. This one is purposely built for some crazy designers and creative artists. The welcoming part of the Surface Studio is the strange but interesting piece of input device - the Surface Dial.
Little bigger than a punk, this little white all aluminum device is programmed to open up a lot of opportunities to designers and artists to work with their both hands - simply reciprocating the paper and ruler drawing we're used to during our high-school engineering classes. It uses just two AA size batteries to operate.
When you place the Surface Dial on the Surface Studio's screen, a variety of menu pops up depending on the application you're working on. If you're in paint, the Dial opens up color palette, types of brushes and so on. This is customizable for each and every application and the best part is that it supports third-party software like Mental Canvas, Sketchable, Bluebeam and few others. This is a boon to abstract designers, blueprint creators and many other drawing-oriented professionals.
It can be used to pan and move through drawings and paint jobs. For normal users, this could be used to adjust brightness and volume, which isn't that progressive. What seems interesting is the door it opens to application developers. Tapping and rotating are the two modes of operation and this little one also gives you haptic feedback at times to live the moment of work.
Surface Dial also works with built-in apps like Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Note and many others. 3D drawing and abstract drawing are the main purposes of Surface Dial. This opens up new possibilities of designing interactive input devices of the future.
Microsoft has priced this at $99 and is compatible with Surface Pro 3 and 4 and Surface Book. Unfortunately, you might not get hold one until early 2017.