We’ve known about ‘Eve’ getting a more advanced stylus for only a couple weeks, but the details have been a bit sparse.
What we are seeing today sheds a bit of light on more functionality coming to Chromebook pens in general. While this commit isn’t necessarily for ‘Eve’, it is bringing button functions to pens that will be included in Chromebooks in the future.
With ‘Eve’ having a more powerful pen, it would make sense that we’ll see this feature coming along for the ride.
Pens Have Been Simple Affairs
Up to this point, pens on Chromebooks have been not just relegated to a few devices; they have been pretty simple tools.
On the Samsung Chromebook Plus/Pro, the pens have proven effective at drawing and navigating the UI, but their tricks are a bit limited at this point. I mean, they are writing utensils after all. But a few navigational tricks would be pretty cool to have up your sleeve when the pen is in-hand.
What Could The Buttons Be?
Ultimately, it doesn’t seem like they are mapping the buttons to anything particular at this point.
In other devices, the buttons can be used to do all sorts of things, though.
For instance, at one point or another, the S-Pen from Samsung has used button/pen combos to launch apps, take screen grabs, and perform navigation shortcuts for the UI.
While the buttons could be locked to system-level functions, they could also be opened up to app developers to use for particular tasks in-app. That is the beautiful part of Chrome OS being so well-defined as an OS. Developers can approach hardware knowing that there will be consistent behavior across all devices.
For now, I’m content to know that more functions coming to the stylus in Chromebooks. It’s yet another validation that this OS and its hardware are evolving every single day.