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Apple Pencil Pro unveiled with new features

The Apple Pencil Pro was among the many products unveiled today during the company’s ‘Let Loose’ iPad event. This goes back to our previous article yesterday, where we highlighted that it’s highly likely to be released.

The new iteration adds Find My support with new features that help the stylus adapt to various creative tasks. These include the ‘Barrel Roll’ gyroscope feature and squeeze gesture for switching between software functions.

This is the first significant update to the Apple Pencil series since the second-gen model was announced in 2018. Now, Apple’s accessory feels closer to home for what you’d find on digital pens for dedicated drawing tablets.

In hindsight, even while the less pricey USB-C Apple Pencil released last year supported a wider selection of iPad models in comparison to the Apple Pencil 2, it also removed some appreciated second-gen features.

This was inclusive of pressure sensitivity and double-tap for switching tools were useful features for graphic design and 3D sculpting.

Presently, the Apple Pencil Pro carries these over along with new features. Going back to the squeeze gesture, it brings up a new palette for switching between tools, colors, and line weights.

There’s even haptic feedback, pulsating when users squeeze or double-tap the pencil.

As for the addition of Apple’s Find My device support, it’s a welcome update for users with tendencies to misplace belongings. Admittedly, it’s fairly easy to forget where one leaves a slim, pencil-shaped device.

App developers can also create custom interactions for the newly-launched stylus too. Procreate CEO James Cuda gave us some examples, including brushes that ‘respond in entirely new ways’.

With the new Barrel Roll feature or the squeeze feature, users can activate software shortcuts. The former also lets animators move and rotate objects simultaneously while recording actions in Procreate Dreams.

However, there is an existing issue here with compatibility. The Apple Pencil Pro is only supported on the newly-announced iPad Air (M2) and OLED iPad Pro (M4) models.

Sadly, users with older hardware won’t be able to make that stylus upgrade. While the newest iteration provides more access to software shortcuts, creative professionals are likely to find that pens on dedicated drawing tablets are more of a fit for them in terms of comfort and personalization.

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