Adobe launches Ink stylus, Slide digital ruler and iPad apps, chasing after Paper

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Adobe is jumping into the iPad drawing market with both feet with the launch of Adobe Ink and Adobe Slide, a new stylus and digital ruler for the iPad. The devices, built by Adonit, connect with an iPad using Bluetooth, and are sold as a pair for $199.

The new hardware comes alongside a pair of new, free iPad apps: Adobe Sketch and Adobe Line. Sketch is similar to FiftyThree‘s Paper drawing app: it’s a tool for artists and designers looking to quickly sketch and share ideas. Artists can choose from a handful of drawing tools, including a graphite pencil, an ink pen and a pair of blending markers.

AdobeLine

Users can work with Ink and Slide to precisely draw straight lines on their Sketch canvasses, or use their fingers. People who want to have access to Slide without shelling out money for Adobe’s new hardware can use the “Touch Slide” functionality and get a digital approximation of the hardware tool.

Sketch features integration with Behance, Adobe’s social network for creative professionals, so artists can share the work that they’re doing and get feedback from people that they trust.

Adobe Line is built for exactly what it sounds like: drawing lines. Unlike Sketch, the app is built for precision-constructing images on the iPad, with features like Smart Guides to help people line up elements. Users can pull other image files into Line and integrate them into drawings, as well.

Line also features an interesting integration with Adobe Slide. In addition to drawing straight lines or simple geometric shapes, users can trace and stamp vector images from “shape packs” including french curves and Herman Miller furniture.

Each app can be used to export files to a user’s computer, or share them with friends through Behance or other social networks.

All told, Adobe’s offerings could draw artists who call the iPad their home away from other independent offerings like Paper, which has its own stylus called Pencil. Not everyone will be interested in paying almost $200 for precision drawing hardware that primarily works with Adobe’s apps, but people can start using Line and Sketch for free, and might choose to shell out for the Ink and Slide later on down the line.