Which Apple Pencil is compatible with the iPad Pro (2021)?

Best answer: The only Apple Pencil you can use with the iPad Pro (2021) is the Apple Pencil 2. It magnetically attaches to the iPad Pro for quick pairing and easy charging.

Only the latest and greatest

The iPad Pro (2021) was introduced during Apple's April 2021 Special Event. Whether you choose the 11-inch or 12.9-inch iPad Pro (2021), the latest Macs include the M1 Chip, so your iPad will be a powerhouse. If you are planning on upgrading and using an Apple Pencil is a must, it may be a good idea to figure out which models will work.

Unfortunately, if you are looking to use an Apple Pencil with your new iPad Pro (2021), the Apple Pencil 2 is your only choice. In fact, the Apple Pencil 2 will work with any 11-inch iPad Pro, the third generation and above 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and the iPad Air 4. However, it will definitely set you back more than the first-generation Apple Pencil for all the new features.

If you have the first-generation Apple Pencil and were hoping it would work with the iPad Pro (2021), sadly, it's time to upgrade.

Second-generation pencil: The perks of Apple Pencil 2

The Apple Pencil 2 is an improvement over the original Apple Pencil in many ways. One of its best features is the way it pairs and charges. Apple uses magnets so that the pencil magnetically attaches to the iPad for pairing and charging.

This means no more odd cover over the charging port of the original Apple Pencil, which invariably gets lost, or using the iPad's lightning port. Simply place the Apple Pencil 2 on the iPad Pro, and it's charging. It works so well that the Apple Pencil 2 rarely will run out of battery life. And you also have a place to store it, right on the iPad itself.

Of course, there are other noteworthy features of the Apple Pencil 2. It features low latency precision drawing and writing, a flat edge that you can double-tap to change tools without setting the pencil down, and battery life of up to 12 hours.

First-generation pencil and alternatives

If you are ride-or-die with the first Apple Pencil, Apple still sells it for use with the regular plain iPad 6th generation and above, iPad mini 5th generation, iPad Air 3, and original discontinued versions of the iPad Pro. It is still a good choice for drawing, writing, and taking notes. Just beware of the archaic charging method of using the iPad's lightning port and the very real possibility that you will lose the cover of the charging port. Plus, with the Apple Pencil 2 available, the Apple Pencil is not exactly futureproofed.

If cost is an issue, there are many great alternatives to consider. Regardless, if you want the new hotness of the iPad Pro (2021), you're going to have to go for an Apple Pencil 2 as well.

Second gen pencil

Apple Pencil (2nd generation)

$129 at Apple

The Pencil for iPad Pro (2021)

The Apple Pencil 2 is the only Apple Pencil compatible with the iPad Pro (2021). It features low latency precision drawing, and it magnetically attaches to your iPad Pro for easy pairing and charging.

M1 iPad

iPad Pro (2021)

From $799 at Apple

iPad for the Pros

The iPad Pro (2021) is available in both 11-inch and 12.9-inch sizes. Both feature the Apple M1 chip and a Thunderbolt port, available 5G cellular connection, and Apple Pencil 2 and Magic Keyboard compatibility. The 12.9-inch adds a Liquid Retina XDR display with mini LED's.

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