Apple’s not crippling the Apple Pencil after all


No, Apple's not nerfing the Apple Pencil.
No, Apple's not nerfing the Apple Pencil.
Photo: Apple

Don’t worry iPad Pro lovers, Apple isn’t nerfing it’s fancy Pencil.

The company removed the ability to navigate in iOS 9.3 with the Apple Pencil in the last four beta updates, but Apple reassured users today that it will bring the functional it back by the time iOS 9.3 is available to the public, it’s just fixing a few things in the meantime. 

“Apple Pencil has been a huge hit with iPad Pro users, who love it for drawing, annotating and taking notes. We believe a finger will always be the primary way users navigate on an iPad, but we understand that some customers like to use Apple Pencil for this as well and we’ve been working on ways to better implement this while maintaining compatibility during this latest beta cycle,” an Apple spokesperson told The Verge. “We will add this functionality back in the next beta of iOS 9.3.”

The Apple Pencil could be used as a traditional stylus to navigate iOS the same way you would with your finger ever since it was released last year. That functionality remained through iOS 9.2, but after iOS 9.3 betas dropped the feature, some Apple spectactors claimed that the move to make Apple Pencil only function in drawing apps was a permanent decision and not a bug that was being overlooked.

It could be possible that Apple was considering nixing Apple Pencil’s use as a stylus but reverse the decision after seeing the outcry from fans yesterday. Whatever the case, it appears that everything will be back in its right place by the time iOS 9.3 is in the public’s hands.

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  • Richard Ludwig

    I think, more likely, there was other stuff in the beta that was a higher priority. I’m glad those who liked this feature got the word out though!