Apple just took the wraps off a lower-price version of its iPad stylus. The new Apple Pencil uses a USB-C port for charging so it’s a better fit for use with the budget iPad.
“Apple Pencil has revolutionized note taking, sketching, and illustrating, unleashing endless possibilities for productivity and creativity,” said Bob Borchers, Apple VP of Worldwide Product Marketing. “Combined with the versatility of iPad, the new Apple Pencil unlocks another great option to experience the magic of digital handwriting, annotation, marking up documents, and more.”
The new version is $50 less than Apple Pencil 2, the premium model. But it lacks some of the features of the top-of-the-line version.
Apple Pencil (USB-C) is a more affordable iPad stylus
A stylus isn’t necessary for most uses for an iPad, but one makes drawing and sketching on the tablet far easier. Many artists use a stylus to paint. And taking handwritten note on a iPad essentially requires a stylus.
There are many iPad-compatible styli available, with the Apple Pencil line as the stand-out options. And now there’s a new choice. It’s called Apple Pencil (USB-C) by its maker.
Like Apple Pencil 2, the new version clings to the side of many iPad models. But unlike the premium model, it does not charge there. Instead, a sliding cap reveals a USB-C port… hence the name.
That makes the accessory easier to use with the iPad 10, which also charges through USB-C and doesn’t include a built-in Apple Pencil charger. But it’s not limited to that tablet — it’s compatible with all iPad models with a USB-C port.
A range of iPad stylus options
If it’s not already clear, Apple Pencil (USB-C) is not called “Apple Pencil 3” and is not a replacement for Apple Pencil 2. It’s more likely to supplant the original Pencil in the product line up. In the mean time, there are three options to choose from.
All iPad styli offer low latency, and small writing tips for accurate drawing. Plus, all the Pencil options include tilt sensitivity so lines being drawn get thick or thinner depending on the angle the stylus is held at.
However, the new budget option does not offer pressure sensitivity, unlike the other two Pencil models. It’s also not paired with a specific iPad via Bluetooth. However, Apple Pencil (USB-C) does offer the new Hover feature on recent iPad Pro tablets.
Given its price and feature set, the third Apple Pencil model is a better fit for students than for artists.
Price and availability
Speaking of price, Apple Pencil (USB-C) costs $79, or $69 through the education market. The product will launch in early November 2023, but it’s not yet possible to pre-order the stylus.
Buy it from: Apple
For comparison, Apple Pencil 2 costs $129 and Apple Pencil 1 is $99.
Just be aware, there are many iPad styli available that aren’t made by Apple. That includes the recently launched Zagg Pro Stylus 2 ($79.99), which has most of the features of Apple Pencil 2. Or there’s the Logitech Crayon ($69.95), a rugged styli designed for children to use. And there are many more.