Handwriting recognition might finally come to iPad

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Sketching with an Apple Pencil is the merest tip of the iceberg of Apple’s suggestions for making your iPad Pro more useful.
iPad handwriting recognition is reportedly coming soon, allowing users to write words into any text box with an Apple Pencil.
Screenshot: Apple

iPad users will be able to use an Apple Pencil to write words into any text box, if an unconfirmed report is correct. Handwriting recognition will allegedly be built into iPadOS 14.

This would bring real changes to the way many interact with their tablet.

MacBook vs. iPad: Which one is right for you?

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Ableton on Mac and iPad.
iPad vs. MacBook: Which platform is better for your needs?
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Looking for a portable Apple computer? You have two choices — a MacBook or an iPad. Both excel at different things. The iPad is super-portable, silent and cool. The Mac is more flexible, offers more connections, and can run much more complex software.

It may be that you already know whether you need a Mac or an iPad. If you use apps that only run on the Mac, or if you need to hook up a lot of extra hardware, then a Mac is your only option. But if you desire the ultimate in portability, or you want to use a touchscreen or an awesome Apple Pencil stylus, you need an iPad.

If you’re on the fence, wondering which portable Apple computer best fits your needs, this article will help you decide. The MacBook vs. iPad battle is on …

Apple Pencil may soon get additional touch-sensitive controls

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A proposed Apple Pencil with more controls.
The second-gen Apple Pencil has a single capacitive button, but Apple is considering several more.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

Building on the capabilities of the Apple Pencil active stylus, Apple proposes adding additional touch-sensitive controls to the exterior. This would expand the capabilities of this drawing tool for the iPad without making it more difficult to use.

This is just one of several ways Apple is considering to improve the Pencil.

Sidecar is the closest we’ll get to a touchscreen Mac, and it’s good enough [Opinion]

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Ableton on Mac and iPad.
Ableton on Mac and iPad.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

We will never see a touchscreen Mac. Apple has made this clear over and over. Whenever one of its executives is asked about a touchscreen Mac in an interview, the answer is always the same: macOS is for trackpads, and iPadOS for is for touch. Combining them would compromise both.

I agree. While I do catch myself tapping the Mac’s screen from time to time, there’s no way I’d want the Mac redesigned for touch. For one thing, you’d lose all the accuracy of the mouse, because clicking targets would have to be big enough for your fingers. But it doesn’t matter, because Apple has already made a touch option for the Mac. It’s Sidecar, and it’s amazing.

Brilliant gifts for any iPad fan [Gift Guide 2019]

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iPad-Gift-Guide-2019
Shopping for an iPad fan? Start here!
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Black Friday is upon us, which means it’s a great time to start your holiday shopping. Don’t worry if you don’t know what to buy — Cult of Mac is here to help you choose the best gifts for the iPad lover in your life.

Gift-Guide-2019-bugYou’ll find the best headphones, speakers, game controllers, and keyboards in our iPad gift guide for 2019. And there’s something to suit every budget.

So, when you’ve finished scoffing down that turkey, check out the roundup below.

Apple’s wonderful holiday ad will tug at your heart strings

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IpAd
Apple’s back with another great holiday ad.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s annual holiday season ad arrived on YouTube today, just in time for it to be included in all the football games and parade footage on Thanksgiving day.

The three-minute long ad called “The Surprise” follows two young girls who travel to their grandfathers house for Christmas. Of course, there are Apple products spread throughout ad and it’s the iPad that will warm your heart the most.

You might wanna grab some tissues:

Today in Apple history: iPad Pro makes its big debut

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iPad Pro
The iPad Pro was a big step forward for the iPad.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

November 11: Today in Apple history: iPad Pro debutsNovember 11, 2015: Apple’s first iPad Pro goes on sale after months of speculation about the giant-size tablet. With its much larger screen, professional-oriented targeting and dreaded (optional) stylus, the 12.9-inch iPad Pro represents Apple CEO Tim Cook’s cleanest break yet from Steve Jobs’ vision for iOS devices.

And it turned out all the better for it!

Photoshop for iPad shows that Adobe totally still has it

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30% of tablets sold last quarter were iPads
30% of tablets sold last quarter were iPads
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Adobe’s Photoshop is now available in the App Store, ready for you to try. You have to sign up for a $10 monthly subscription, even just to test it out, but there’s a one-month free trial included in the sub. With that out of the way, how is it? Extremely limited, but very promising.

If you’re familiar with Photoshop on the Mac or PC, then you will feel immediately at home. You will also feel immediately frustrated, because the app does almost nothing. We learned earlier this month that Photoshop for iOS would offer a cut-down feature set compared to the full desktop version. Still, this app is so basic that — if you want to actually get any work done — you should grab something like Affinity Photo instead.

But as an example of an iPad app, Photoshop is stellar. It’s easy to use, and yet most of the basics are there. And there’s a new UI innovation, called the Touch Shortcut, that should be in every app. Let’s take a look.

This is the affordable Apple Pencil rival you’ve been looking for [Review]

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Adonit Note+ review
With Adonit Note+, you can draw Tippy. Or take notes, sign PDFs, and more.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Adonit Note+ is a pressure-sensitive iPad stylus that stands up well in a head-to-head competition with Apple Pencil, and even beats it in some areas. It offers tilt detection and pressure sensitivity, as well as shortcut buttons. All at a price definitely lower than Apple’s stylus.

We used this Apple Pencil alternative for both writing and drawing — read our Adonit Note+ review to see how it handles in real-world use.