Apple Pencil learns new tricks as part of iPadOS 14. Apple is bringing several new capabilities to its stylus, including substantial modifications to handwriting and notes. Let’s see how it works.
There are two main categories of Apple Pencil features. We also took a look at Scribble, an iPadOS feature that converts everything you write to typed text. This includes not only the Notes application, but anywhere in the operating system where you can enter text.
But, there is more than scribbling.
New Features for Apple Pencil
Aside from Scribble, Apple Pencil can do a lot more with iPadOS 14 than with iPadOS 13.
When sketching, iPadOS will now identify the shapes you are drawing and possibly convert them to clean lines. Sometimes it helps in the notes you take to have clean lines rather than messy sketches. More than a dozen common shapes are supported, including circles, stars, or even bubbles.
Different shapes converted with iPadOS 14
To convert your shape, you draw as you normally would, then before you lift the tip of the pencil, you just hold on for a moment. If you draw and lift immediately, this remains a sketch.
- Thought bubble
- Arrow indicated
- Continuous line with 90 degree turns
- Line with arrow end pointv
- Curve with boom end
Another great addition to Apple Pencil in the Notes app is new data detectors. In iOS 14, when you write someone’s phone number, address, or website, iPadOS will recognize them and let you take the appropriate action. It identifies these types of data by underlining them after writing them.
Data detector in iPadOS 14 Notes
For example, if you write a phone number, when you tap it, you will get options to call the number, send a message, or add it to your contacts. If you tap an address, the Maps app opens at that location. And tapping on a URL will open that website.
This recognition of handwriting is a theme for Apple Pencil. Not only is your handwriting converted to text with Scribble, but when left as handwriting, it can now be selected more easily. Simply slide your finger or highlight it with Apple Pencil to select any group of text. A double tap will instantly select an entire word and a triple tap will highlight the entire sentence.
Any text selection will have handles at the start and end of the selection, just as if you were selecting typed text so that you could refine the selection.
Handwriting selected in iPadOS 14 can be copied as text or have a space inserted above
The selected handwriting can now be copied as text and pasted into any other application. This makes it easy to note notes with Apple Pencil in the Notes application, then copy parts and paste them into a project in Pages.
This selected handwriting can also be moved to the Notes application. Once selected, a triangle will appear on the left which can be moved up or down to increase the space between sentences or paragraphs. For example, you are taking notes and need to go back and add additional informationon at the top. Quickly select all of the text under that mark and drag the triangle down to space things out. This can also be done by pressing the selection and choosing the new option “Insert space above”.
In the settings, Apple Pencil offers two new options. There is a new option to draw only with Apple Pencil so that your fingers do not draw inadvertently. There is also a new toggle to disable Scribble on ad.
Apple Pencil Offers
All of these new features will arrive with the release of iPadOS 14 and will work on all iPads that support the original and second generation Apple Pencil.
Existing features for new Apple updates