How ballpoint pens changed the world

branded pen

“No man was more foolish when he had not a pen in his hand, or more wise when he had.”

Dr Samuel Johnson

How many pens do you have on your desk right now? I can count at least 4. But, then, it does help that I work for a branded merchandise company. Have you ever stopped to consider how the humble ballpoint pen changed the world? Me neither, until today.

At Streamline we’ve never underestimated the power of a branded pen, but we’ve likely never considered the true impact of the ballpoint pen either. The fact is that ballpoint pens are everywhere – your bag, your car, your desk, your office and your classroom. You can always be sure that you’re never too far away from a handy ballpoint pen.

The miraculous Biro

In 1938 Ladislao Biro invented the first ball point pen. The new pen was hailed as ‘miraculous’ due to its quick drying ink and refill-free nature. It was an invention that changed many people’s lives.

When the product first hit the stores of America people queued in the street for the new gadget, which was sold for the equivalent of $150 in today’s money (sounds familiar doesn’t it, Apple?).

(Fancy a set of slick pens like this for your brand? Then click here to get in touch with one of our branded stationery experts!)

The Biro revolutionised how people wrote.

Writing had never before been so easy, so portable and so accessible.  For the first time people could write down ideas immediately – there was no need for a pen and ink pot. People could write swiftly without worrying about the ink smudging and there was no more concern about forgetting what you’d heard before you had the chance to commit it to paper.

The positive effect on literacy

The significance of the ballpoint pen to literacy and education is still important. Even in a world filled with smartphones and social media – where we increasingly document every moment of our day – ballpoint pens can still be found close by, wherever you may be.

Wrap Up

In an increasingly digital world, the humble pen is still the thing you reach for when you need to make a quick note of a telephone number while you’re taking a call on your smartphone. You don’t need to worry about charging your ballpoint pen. And, if it runs out of ink, it’s easy and cost effective to pick up another one.

A study by The Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) found that 83% of people still use a ballpoint pen daily, and 73% still carry one with them.

So why not let a branded ballpoint pen do some of the hard marketing work for you? With branded pens – and most other branded stationery options – you put your brand directly into your client’s and colleague’s hands. So it’s still a valuable weapon in your promotional merchandise arsenal.

Interested in your own collection of promotional pens or biros? Just head over to our Organise Collection page to explore a range of options available to you.