Apple has just unveiled its latest Apple Pencil, which is set to hit the market at a price point of $79 ($69 for educational purposes). What sets this new model apart is its ability to pair and charge using a USB-C cable. The product is scheduled for release in early November and is compatible with any iPad that features a USB-C port.
This new Apple Pencil is Apple’s most budget-friendly offering in the lineup yet. It’s $20 cheaper than the original model and $40 less expensive than the second-generation Apple Pencil. According to Apple, this latest version boasts features like pixel-perfect accuracy, low latency, and tilt sensitivity.
Notably, this time, the new Apple Pencil doesn’t incorporate pressure sensitivity. If that’s a must-have feature for you, you’ll have to stick with one of the previous iterations. While the USB-C Apple Pencil can be magnetically attached to the side of your iPad for storage, it enters a sleep state in this position to extend its battery life. However, it’s important to note that wireless charging support is not included. To recharge the Pencil, you’ll need to remove a cap to reveal a USB-C port and plug in a charging cable.
Unlike the second-generation Pencil, the latest version doesn’t allow you to double-tap to switch between drawing tools. Furthermore, Apple is no longer offering free engraving with this release. Nevertheless, if you own an M2-powered iPad, you’ll be able to leverage the hover feature, which was also supported by the second-generation Pencil. This feature enables you to preview any mark you plan to make before it is applied to your notes, sketches, annotations, and more.
This announcement is in line with Apple’s ongoing transition away from the Lightning port, which was largely driven by European Union regulations. Apple began embracing USB-C on iPads a few years ago and removed the Lightning port from all iPhone 15 models.
While it will take some time for Apple to completely phase out the Lightning port, several devices, including older iPhones, AirPods Max, Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, and the first-generation Apple Pencil, still utilize this charging port. Nevertheless, this is another significant step towards a future where USB-C is the universal standard, reducing the number of charging cables you need to carry.