Apple’s iPencil launched to target graphic designers and professional artists

Apple introduced the biggest ever iPad called iPad Pro with a 12.9 inch display at a media event on Wednesday. The company also introduced the first Apple Pencil, a new stylus designed for the iPad Pro for drawing and sketching.

The Apple Pencil is designed to be used with the larger iPad, which is aimed at professional artists and designers. According to Jonathan Ive, Apple’s chief design officer, the Pencil will allow a new precision in drawing on the screen of the iPad, responding to different levels of pressure and different angles.

With pressure sensors, it can detect how hard you are pushing on the screen and change the width of the line you draw accordingly. With more advanced sensors on the tip, it can detect the angle of the pencil stroke, so it feels more like a real pen.

“Highly responsive sensors built into the tip of the Apple Pencil work with the iPad Pro display to detect position, force and tilt,” said Ive in a movie shown as part of Apple’s product presentation yesterday. “With force data you can press lightly to get a thin stoke or press harder to get a darker, bolder stroke. Signals emitted from two locations in the tip calculate the angle and orientation to produce broad or shaded strokes.”

The technology that reads the touch on the screen has been designed in a different way to identify the difference between different Pencil strokes and a finger touch.

“Its unique tip signature allows it to be used simultaneously with your finger and, with incredibly low latency, it has a responsiveness that feels like a true writing or drawing instrument,” said Ive. “Apple Pencil is designed to look and feel like a familiar tool, yet with its carefully engineered technology, working with our most advanced multi-touch display, it delivers something extraordinary – precision that actually gives you the ability to touch a single pixel.”

The top of the Apple Pencil contains sensors that feed information back to the tablet device. The Apple Pencil can be recharged via an Apple-standard Lightning cable, which you can apparently plug straight into the iPad Pro. Apple says the Pencil should last about 12 hours, and in case of emergencies, 15 seconds of charging can provide about 30 minutes of use. The Apple Pencil is supported by apps like the updated Notes and Mail, coming in iOS 9. Third party applications will also support it.

Apple had Microsoft on stage to demonstrate the Apple Pencil working with Microsoft Office apps running on the iPad Pro. In that demo, Microsoft showed up how you can use an Apple Pencil for marking up Office documents and sharing the annotations.

With iOS 9’s multitasking features, Microsoft also showed off using the Apple Pencil to bring data across apps. With the Apple Pencil, graphics professionals get an easier, more responsive way to digitally edit pictures and photos.

The company will be shipping the Apple Pencil in November at a price of $99.

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