Apple announced third-generation iPad Pros at its October event in Brooklyn today, along with an updated Apple Pencil that now charges wirelessly via magnetic attachment. The update was necessary, as the new iPad Pro switched from charging via Lightning port to USB-C, and the old Apple Pencil only charged via a Lightning port in its (easily losable) cap. The bad news is that the new Pencil is only compatible with the latest iPad Pros, and alternatively, the first generation Apple Pencils aren’t compatible with the new tablet either, as shown on the Apple website.
Although the new Apple Pencil vastly improves the charging process by forgoing the charging port entirely, the switch to USB-C came at the cost of losing the original Apple Pencil’s functionality on the new iPad Pros. If you’re thinking of upgrading to the new iPad Pro, that means you have to buy the newest Apple Pencil even if you already have the old Apple Pencil at home.
It’s not a particularly consumer-friendly move as, at $129, the new Pencil is $30 more expensive than its predecessor. You can think of the extra cost as getting you gesture controls that let you switch tools within a drawing app by double tapping the sides of the pencil, but is it worth it? At least if you order online, you can get a free laser engraving on it.