The other obvious change is the pen supplied with the M609X. It is a different shape to the previous model, shorter and slimmer, similar in size and appearance to a fountain pen. It has two buttons which are positioned closer to the tip than on the previous model, and are consequently easier to operate. I can’t say for sure whether the new pen differs in operation, but it’s certainly more comfortable to use.
Unlike the pens used with Wacom tablets, the pens supplied with the Genius tablets are powered by a single AAA battery, which is included. Some readers of my previous review expressed concerns about this, citing it as another advantage of the Wacom system, but I still have the have the M712 and do occasionally use it, and the original battery supplied with that pen still appears to be fine seven months later, so battery life doesn’t appear to be a major issue.
The driver software for the M609X includes a manager for the hotkeys around the edge of the drawing area. The top row are fixed presets and cannot be altered. They include some useful defaults such as New Document, Open, Save, Cut, Copy, Paste and Undo, but they also include shortcuts to open Microsoft Office applications, including Word, Outlook, Powerpoint, Excel and Internet Explorer. As I said, these presets cannot be altered, however there are a further 14 hotkeys that can be set as shortcuts to launch any other application.