First and second generation Apple Pencil. their differences — 2022

One of the must-have accessories for an iPad is the Apple Pencil. It is ideal for taking notes or making drawings in a very comfortable way, although you can always have doubts about whether to choose the first generation Apple Pencil or the second. In this article we analyze the differences and similarities that exist between both models.

Main differences

Apparently, given the similarity between the two Apple Pencil models at first glance, one would expect that the differences between them would be very slight. However, forgetting this purely aesthetic appreciation, the reality is that there are certain points where both accessories are quite different. That is why, from the outset, we are going to start talking about these, so that you can be very clear about the main differences between the 1st generation Apple Pencil and the 2nd generation Apple Pencil.

Apple Pencil Designs vs.

The Apple Pencil was launched on the market in 2015 with a design that is very reminiscent of a traditional pencil. In its first generation, it opted for a fully circular design that seeks to achieve an experience similar to that with a pen or pencil. This obviously has the problem that it can easily fall off when rolling on a flat and slightly inclined surface. That is why in its second generation a design that was not completely cylindrical but with a flat part that, in addition to allowing wireless charging, makes it much more ergonomic.

apple pencil 1 vs 2

Apart from this, we see as a significant difference the fact that in the first generation a metallic gray band was included that gave rise to the plug of the charging system. This detail in the design has completely disappeared in the second generation, making an Apple Pencil much more uniform.

When it comes to the tip of the pencil, there are no very notable differences between the two models. Both have a rubber tip that can be removed and exchanged for a new one if it wears out.

If you also want to take into account the diameter or weight of each of the accessories, we summarize it in this table:

Apple Pencil 1Apple Pencil 2
Long17.75 cm16.6 cm
Diameter0.89 cm0.89 cm
Weight20,7 g20.7 g
connectionsBluetooth, conector lightning.Bluetooth

How to charge the battery

One of the big changes that can be seen between the first and second generation models is undoubtedly the charging system. The first Apple Pencil that was launched on the market has a somewhat peculiar way of charging. A plug at the top needs to be removed to access the Lightning connector that can be connected to the iPad via the charging port. This is something really uncomfortable because it makes the device as a whole a size in which it is almost impossible to transport. In many cases, the combo itself has been compared to a lollipop by being able to take the iPad from the Apple Pencil.

Apple Pencil 1 charging

This changed with the arrival of the second generation model by opting for a wireless charging system that works by attaching the Apple Pencil to the iPad. This includes a magnetic area where the pencil can be placed to start charging. In this way it can be transported in a really simple way as it does not take up too much space in that location. This also means that the user always has a charge on the Apple Pencil as it is always attached to the wireless charging port, called the Smart Connector. This is a limiting factor for the accessory's compatibility as it will depend on this charging area on the iPad.

Common aspects

Despite the differences that we have mentioned between the two devices, obviously they are the styluses manufactured by Apple, so they have to have meeting points where they both work the same, or at least, in a very similar way. That is exactly what we want to talk to you about now, about the aspects that these two Apple Pencil models have in common.

Functions in writing and drawing

Taking advantage of the flat area that is included in the second generation Apple Pencil, a touch area was included that is not in the first. In this way with a double tap you can change tools without having to release the pencil. You can choose to have the draft always at hand with these two taps on the shortcut. This makes it an accessory that is ideal especially for those people who use it to constantly draw or write since it saves you from having to choose a tool on the iPad screen.

alternative apple pencil

This is something that is not included in the first generation or anything like it. It only has the function of writing or drawing on the screen but it does not have any surface or button that allows you to customize the tools that are used. You are forced to have to drop it and choose with your finger on the screen the tool you want. However, the experience when writing and drawing with these two devices is very similar, and why not say it, very good too. It gives users the possibility to carry out tasks and actions that until the arrival of this accessory could not be carried out on an iPad.


This is, with complete certainty, the point where both Apple Pencil models are most alike, and that is that no differences can really be found in terms of autonomy between the first generation and the second generation. Both, according to the Cupertino company, have an autonomy of up to 12 hours , which is more than enough for any user to charge it at night and be completely sure that it will have a battery to be able to face a whole day of work.

However, here a point must be made, and that is that returning to one of the differences mentioned above, when vary both the way of charging one Apple Pencil and another, the feeling that users have when using the 2nd generation is that the battery is almost infinite, since the tendency when the pencil is not used is to leave it magnetized on the iPad, a practice that makes it load too. This does not happen with the 1st generation Apple Pencil, which means that on many occasions this accessory is charged when it is really completely necessary.

compatibility of both

There are important differences in the models that are compatible with each of the Apple Pencil. The first generation is reserved for the most basic and economical equipment on the market, leaving the second generation for the most professional.

Apple Pencil first generation compatibility

  • iPad Pro 12.9″ first and second generation.
  • iPad Pro 9.7″.
  • iPad Pro 10.5″.
  • iPad 9.7″ 6th generation.
  • iPad Air 3rd generation.
  • iPad mini 5th generation
  • iPad 10.2″ 7th generation.
  • iPad 10.2 8th generation

Apple Pencil 2nd generation compatibility

  • iPad Air 4th generation
  • iPad Pro 11″ 2nd generation.
  • iPad Pro 12.9″ 3rd and 4th generation.
  • iPad Pro 11″ 1st generation.

Differentiated prices

Due to the improvements included in the second generation over the first, the price has also increased, with a clear difference. While the first generation model is officially priced at €99 , which has been maintained over the years, the second generation costs €135 . In any case, it can be personalized totally free by adding an engraving with your name, initials and even the phone number, this being something exclusive to the Apple Store.