Are Stylus Tips the Achilles Heel of the Sony DPT-RP1 and Remarkable?


The Sony DPT-RP1 and Remarkable both have similar styluses with tips that wear out after a few weeks or so, depending on how much you use them.

This supposedly makes the writing experience feel more paper-like on both devices, but it’s also a serious problem when there are no more stylus tips to buy, and the tips are so unique that they aren’t interchangeable with other tips.

Both devices basically lock you in to buying replacement tips that they can charge pretty much whatever they want for and there’s nothing you can do about it.

It’s either buy new stylus tips all the time or don’t use the stylus at all.

It’s not a big deal if replacement tips are readily available and reasonably priced, but that’s not the case at present for either device.

Sony can’t keep up with demand. Stylus tips for the DPT-RP1 have been out of stock on Amazon the majority of the time since the device was released. It’s been 3 full months and there’s still nowhere to buy replacement felt tips. B&H currently has some Pom tips for a pen-like feel, but you couldn’t get a hold of some felt tips if you wanted to right now.

There’s also the fact that a pack of ten tips for the Sony costs $20. That seems a bit expensive considering you can buy a pack of 144 #2 pencils for about the same price.

The Remarkable’s marker tips are more reasonably priced at $12 for 8 tips, and they’re actually in stock and available to purchase right now, but shipping costs ruin everything.

Currently they’re charging an insane $29 to ship a tiny little box of tips. There’s a note that says more affordable shipping options are coming soon, but anything more than $4 is going to make them more expensive than replacement tips for the Sony.

Then what happens a few years from now when these devices get replaced with newer models? Are replacement tips even going to be available 3 to 5 years from now?

When you’re paying $600-$700 for a digital notepad device you don’t expect all the writing features to become completely useless because of a lack or replacement tips, but that’s something that could likely happen. If not now, eventually…

14 Responses to “Are Stylus Tips the Achilles Heel of the Sony DPT-RP1 and Remarkable?”

  1. I had no idea the tops worn out so fast if at all. I can see where this would be a real problem for artists and others who do heavy writing of office documents besides just a signature…
    I did a search of the two and there’s very little out there in the way of tips… Funny thing when you search for Remarkable pen tips you find that everything is remarkable 😉

  2. Is this the case for Onyx products as well ?

  3. This post makes a very good point and it’s actually one of the reasons why I decided not to buy the Remarkable (price and limited functionality being the others).

  4. No, the achilles heel of the DPT-RP1 is its closed software, and the Remarkable is completely unremarkable with its tiny screen anyway. I would gladly pay for styluses if I could get a device which actually did the things I need it to do.

    • If the software was more open and allowed apps then it would be more buggy and then you would complain about that. Personally I’m glad it doesn’t have extra Android nonsense to slow it down, drain the battery, and cause unwanted problems. It’s a PDF reader and digital notepad, not a tablet. If you want an open device get an Onyx Boox Max and then complain about how it’s buggy because 99% of Android apps don’t work well with E Ink.

  5. Hopefully these devices gain traction in the market, i.e. very large e-ink devices.

    Right now they are mainly targeted for business users. If market demand grows for them, prices will go down, to include stylus tips. 🙂

    I tend to agree with Nathan. General Android support isn’t really a benefit for e-ink devices. That being said it would be nice if Sony added support for epub in their device — at least the ability to read epub.

  6. The achilles heal is the $700 price tag.

    • For consumers — yes $700 is the big Achilles heel.

      For business users — no — $700 is a non issue, as business users are a lot less price sensitive.

      I do agree with you — the stylus price is a non issue (relative to the purchase cost of the device). If you’re a business user — expensive styluses is really a non issue. If you are a consumer it is a huge issue.

      That being said I really hope Sony works on getting the pricing down to the consumer level. Personally — I can see them getting it down to maybe $500 in two years, although that is still too high for consumers.

  7. The real Achilles heal for Remarkable is their lack of transparency and poor customer service/public relations. They may make a nice device (remains to be seen as I many never get mine) but the delays are too much. I get the delay due to the software glitches. But then they make a big deal that they will start to ship and then failed to take the holidays into account. Very poor planning and frankly kind of stupid. My “October” shipment is not going to happen yet they have not felt the need to advise. Frustrated.

  8. It would be nice to know if anyone figures out a hack (sharpened chopstick? plastic or wood?
    #2 pencil with glue on the tip? etc).

    Remarkable looked interesting, but once I learned more about it, I passed.

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