Users of the Apple Pencil, the stylus-like device launched alongside the iPad Pro earlier this year, who became concerned following Apple’s beta release of iOS 9.3 have been placated by Apple which has just confirmed to The Verge that they wouldn’t be removing any functionality across iOS when the next iteration of the iPhone and iPad operating system goes live.
So far, there have been four beta editions of the next release, each of them limiting the usefulness of the Pencil on the iPad Pro. These versions of iOS currently restrict users from opening apps, scrolling and other various elements of navigation on the 12.9-inch device.
It’s a considerable move away from its functionality in the current version of the OS – iOS 9.2 – and led some users to question how Apple CEO Tim Cook’s comments about the iPad Pro replacing laptops could be justified with this kind of reduction in capability of the $100 accessory.
However, Apple has finally confirmed the fate of this everyday functionality – the article from The Verge states Apple’s intention to fully restore functionality in the next beta version of iOS 9.3.
Here’s the statement from Apple:
Apple Pencil has been a huge hit with iPad Pro users, who love it for drawing, annotating and taking notes. We believe a finger will always be the primary way users navigate on an iPad, but we understand that some customers like to use Apple Pencil for this as well and we’ve been working on ways to better implement this while maintaining compatibility during this latest beta cycle. We will add this functionality back in the next beta of iOS 9.3.
It’s unclear whether the intention was to lose the capability altogether, but it’s certainly possible. However, this statement certainly shows the Apple won’t be considering restricting the devices functionality anytime soon.