iPad Pro cases make charging new Apple Pencil a pain

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An iPad Pro case can prevent your Apple Pencil from charging.
An iPad Pro case can prevent your Apple Pencil from charging.
Photo: Apple

The redesigned Apple Pencil magnetically clips to the side of the 2018 iPad Pro, and even wireless charges when its held there. This is a feature many people have been hoping for, but it comes with a significant drawback. This new pressure-sensitive stylus won’t be able to charge through some protective cases.

Case-maker Speck has confirmed that its first offering for the latest iPad will interfere with charging the Pencil, and says many of its rivals will as well.

When Speck unveiled the Presidio Pro Folio, Cult of Mac reached out to the company to find out how the Apple Pencil would operate with this rugged case.

Speck responded by saying:

“Our BalanceFolio and Presidio ProFolio cases for the new 2018 iPad Pro 11” & 12.9” currently inhibit wireless charging for the Apple Pencil, as do most protective cases on the market. We are designing product updates to provide full usability of the device. The product updates enabling compatibility with the new Apple Pencil (2nd generation) will [be] available in early 2019. Speck is committed to providing upgrades to our customers who purchased the generation 1 of our product line.”

Apple Pencil 2.0 charging problem

Clearly, this isn’t just Speck’s issue. All rugged cases are going to need to be designed with an opening for the Apple Pencil 2.0. That’s because the only way to charge this accessory is by clipping it to the iPad Pro.

This won’t be an issue for less protective cases, as these typically  leave the sides  open. For example, the Apple Smart Keyboard Folio designed specifically for the latest iOS tablets doesn’t cover the edge where the Apple Pencil needs to attach.

With the 2018 iPad Pro not even in customers’ hands yet, very few cases specifically for it have been announced. And there could be a wait, as some companies may be hastily redesigning their products, as Speck was forced to do.

In the mean time, those who are eagerly awaiting their new tablet who are also getting an Apple Pencil 2.0 should take great care in selecting a case. You don’t want one that will prevent you from charging the stylus.