The Apple Pencil is an Apple-designed stylus that works with Apple’s iPads. It’s called the Apple Pencil because of its resemblance to a traditional pencil, albeit with a definitively Apple-esque design. Check out the advantages of Apple Pencil below.
There are two versions: the first generation Apple Pencil and the second generation Apple Pencil. If you’re reading this article then you’re probably wondering “what are the advantages of Apple Pencil?” Read on to find out!
Advantages of Apple Pencil
The Apple Pencil offers a few major advantages over your fingers when it comes to interacting with your iPad. Here are all the advantages of using Apple Pencil:
1. You can take Handwritten notes and drafts
Some of us are still nuts enough to write the occasional first draft by hand—I’m one!—and no other combination of electronic devices really captures the experience of writing with paper and pencil quite like the iPad and Apple Pencil. Paper and ink still have the edge—even with its admirable precision, the Apple Pencil still feels a bit like a marker—but the Pencil and iPad nudge us a lot closer to ditching paper than I once figured we’d be at this point in history.
If you like to take handwritten notes, write down equations, or otherwise produce text without using a keyboard then the Apple Pencil will suit you like a glove.
Writing with the Pencil feels like writing with a normal pen; You don’t have to make any compromises to your handwriting technique to make it work.
2. A digital “whiteboard” for presentations
Got a TV that that works with AirPlay? Got an HDMI dongle for your iPad? If you do, you can hook up your iPad to an external monitor and use it for presentations.
Plenty of you already know this thanks to Keynote or PowerPoint. With an Apple Pencil-compatible app like Notability or Microsoft OneNote, though, you can use your iPad as a “whiteboard” in meetings for making mind maps, rough diagrams, or just for jotting down ideas. It makes for a significantly more interactive experience in meetings than merely showing some slides to your coworkers.
3. Mark up PDFs and screenshots
The humble PDF is still with us and thriving, particularly in universities, schools, and businesses. With the help of an app like PDF Expert, you can use your Apple Pencil to highlight text in a PDF, scribble marginal notes, and make editing marks as easily as you might with a piece of paper.
You can mark up anything, really. Just take a screenshot and go to town.
Apple Pencil works just as well with Apple’s screenshot markup tool that’s now built into both macOS and iOS. It substantially simplifies actions like circling text or elements in a photo or making arrows to point to something. Just scribble on the screenshot as though you’re writing on paper and you’ll be ready to send it to someone.
4. It’s the perfect partner for drawing
Another major advantage of Apple Pencil is how it gives artists almost everything they need to sketch, draw, and colorize artwork on their touchscreen device. This is because the Apple iPad supports technologies like palm rejection and pressure sensitivity, both of which are fundamental to most digital artists.
Combine that with an active imagination and a few powerful artistic apps like Procreate, Affinity Photo, or Photoshop for iPad and you’ve got everything you need to start creating amazing digital art.
You can even grab a Paperlike screen protector to make the surface of the iPad feel like real paper.
This combination of hardware and software makes your Apple devices powerful enough to compete with dedicated drawing tools like the Wacom Cintiq. The iPad apps, combined with features built into the iPadOS software save Apple users from a hefty investment into specialized hardware.
After all, why purchase a dedicated art device when the iPad can get the job done at no additional charge?
That’s especially true when you use the macOS Sidecar feature or an app like Astropad to transform your iPad into a graphics tablet for your Macbook (while still using the Apple Pencil as your primary stylus).
Keeping professional artists out of unnecessary investments and allowing hobbyists to improve their craft by utilizing technology that they already own makes the Apple Pencil a worthwhile purchase for millions of iPad users.
5. It’s much more precise than a finger
Hands and fingers are great for a lot of things, but they’re clumsy and awkward when compared to the precision that we get from using specialized tools.
And we’re not just talking about the Apple Pencil! That’s true for any tool — stylus or otherwise.
One great advantage of Apple Pencil is that you’ll have finer-grained control over your hand movements. This allows you to use your iPad in new and exciting ways, from writing and journaling all the way to drawing and digital design.
It can also be a good substitute when you don’t want to use your fingers in general maybe you’re wearing heavy gloves, or have ink on your fingers. The Apple Pencil can do anything that your fingers can do. Apple Pencil is precise, so it is accurate down to the pixel. That means there’s no offsetting between where the pencil is located and what’s shown on the screen.
6. Pressure Sensitivity advantage
Another major advantage of the Apple Pencil comes down to sensitivity when touching the stylus to your screen.
Because the tip of the Apple Pencil understands how hard or soft you press against the screen, it’s possible for iPad users to create everything from handwritten text to incredible digital artwork without any other specialized tool.
Other stylus options may only provide limited pressure sensitivity — if they even offer it at all.
What’s more: Many app developers have also discovered how to take advantage of these unique features.
With creative apps like Procreate, artists can adjust the size, texture, and consistency of the brushes and erasers they use to paint and draw.
Notetakers using GoodNotes 5 can emphasize key points in their notes by pressing down harder while using the fountain pen tool.
While Apple hasn’t revealed any pressure sensitivity levels for the Apple Pencil, the stylus is diverse enough that professional artists are able to create incredible works of digital art without resorting to specialized equipment like Wacom tablets or expensive desktops.
7. Apple Pencil works with a variety of apps
Another great advantage of Apple Pencil is that it works with tons of third-party apps for note taking, drawing, sketching, and more. You can find these apps by searching for Apple Pencil in the App Store on the iPad, but below we’ve listed some standouts.
- Procreate ($9.99) – Ideal for sketching, drawing, and art creation. Simple enough for beginners, but powerful enough for professionals.
- Notability ($8.99) – Notability is a note taking app that’s been around for a long time. It has all kinds of features for writing, sketching, annotating PDFs, and more, plus there are plenty of paper styles and it can scan documents, record audio clips, and more.
- Pixelmator ($4.99) – If you like to edit photos on your iPad, Pixelmator is worth checking out. It supports Apple Pencil, and the Apple Pencil is a great tool for precision edits.
- Pigment (Free with in-app purchases) – If you like to color and find it relaxing, there are tons of coloring apps for the Apple Pencil like Pigment.
- Adobe Fresco – Adobe Fresco is a drawing, painting, and sketching app from Adobe that also takes advantage of the Apple Pencil. It offers tons of Photoshop brushes, including live brushes and vector brushes, plus it has powerful tools for making selections, masking, adding layers, and more. It’s free, but premium features cost $9.99 to unlock.
- Linea Sketch ($4.99) – If you like to jot down ideas and make quick drawings, Linea Sketch is easy to learn, easy to use, and has a useful range of tools for you to take advantage of.
8. Great battery life
Your Apple Pencil will take about 15 minutes to fully charge, and a full charge will last for about ten to twelve hours of use.
9. Pencil-Like Weighting
Apple designed the Apple Pencil to have a pencil-like feel in the hand, and it is weighted to feel like a real writing instrument.
10. Low Latency
In order to be able to use the input with a digital pen really productively, one criterion is most important: The delay between touching the screen and displaying the input must be as short as possible. One huge benefits of Apple Pencil is that it has super low latency, which means that when you write on the iPad, there’s no delay between the movement of the pencil and what appears on the display. Apple Pencil latency is as low as 9ms on iPads with 120Hz displays (the iPad Pro models from 2017 and later).
11. Simple Pairing
The Apple Pencil connects to the iPad over Bluetooth just as other peripherals do, but this is unlike any other Bluetooth device you’ve ever paired. Apple has made pairing the Apple Pencil extremely easy. There’s no need to fuss with Bluetooth with Apple Pencil. It connects automatically. Just plug in the first version or attach the second version to the iPad Pro.
These are advantages of Apple Pencil
These, according to us, are the 11 most important advantages of Apple Pencil. If you like to take handwritten notes, markup PDFs by hand, write down equations, or otherwise produce text without using a keyboard then the Pencil will suit you perfectly. Similarly, if you produce digital art or plan to do a lot of photo editing with your iPad then the Pencil will really improve your experience—especially compared to just using your finger. If you know you want a stylus for your day-to-day iPad use then, get the Pencil.
Now that you know the benefits of Apple Pencil, consider checking out our article on amazing advantages of Apple AirTags. You may also find our post about The Top 13 Advantages of Owning an iPad useful.
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