Software & Web Development

Wacom drops "Bamboo" name for tablets with new Intuos line

Topping a summer of exciting announcements, on Wednesday Wacom announced a rebranding of its consumer and professional tablet line. The company has taken the Intuos name and applied it to its consumer line of digital drawing tablets, leaving the Bamboo brand for its basic iPad styluses. In addition, Wacom's new tablets have improved multitouch, built-in wireless options, and new designs.

Long live the Bamboo

The Bamboo line has existed alongside its professional sibling, the Intuos, for many years. Starting off life as a single tablet with no control buttons or multitouch, Bamboo eventually expanded to a four-tablet line: the Connect ($79), Splash ($79), Capture ($99), and Create ($199). Wednesday's announcement both changes the name and consolidates the line to three models: the Pen-only ($79, small), Pen and Touch Small ($99), and Pen and Touch Medium ($199). (There is an Intuos Manga edition available for $99, but the tablet looks identical to the Pen and Touch. The only difference is the inclusion of Manga Studio Debut 4 and Anime Studio Debut 8.)

The standard Intuos line now offers a new design and pen shape, better multitouch, four ExpressKeys with application-specific settings for popular creative software, and colored rings and pen-holder tags--in case you feel like personalizing your device. You can also add Bluetooth wireless capability to these tablets with the company's $39 wireless accessory kit.

Meet the Intuos Pro

Wacom's other name change is more subtle: The Intuos5 has become the Intuos Pro, though little has changed about the actual tablet. It still offers 2048 levels of pressure sensitivity, ExpressKeys, and a radial ring, plus Wacom's signature pen.

A few new goodies await those who haven't upgraded yet. For one, all Intuos Pro tablets now come with wireless connectivity built in--no extra kit needed. You'll notice small increases in price to the Small and Large tablets: The Intuos5 Small bumps from $229 to $249, while the  Intuos5 Large increases from $469 to $499. The tablets also sport improved multitouch gestures and the option for a premium-styled version of Wacom's Intuos Pro Medium tablet for $379 (versus the normal Medium's $349).

You can buy a new Intuos and Intuos Pro tablet starting Wednesday from Wacom's store or from your local electronics retailer.


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