The Apple Pencil Pro won't work with your old iPad, here's why

Apple Pencil Pro and iPad Pro
(Image credit: Future)
Apple Let Loose Event

Let Loose Live

(Image credit: Apple)

1. Let Loose iPad event LIVENew iPad Pro, iPad Air, and more as it happens!
OLED iPad Pro — Will it be M3 or M4?
iPad Air 6 — Is the M2 chip coming to the iPad Air?
Apple Pencil 3 — Or should we say Apple Pencil Pro?

Apple's "Let Loose" event did a great job of tidying up the iPad lineup, removing the ninth-generation model, dropping the price of the tenth-generation one, and adding fresh new iPad Air and iPad Pro models.

It also introduced a new Apple Pencil model, the Apple Pencil Pro, but as with the new Magic Keyboard, it's not backwards compatible with older devices in the tablet lineup.

That's according to Apple's store page for the $129/£129 Apple Pencil Pro, which lists compatible iPad models as the latest iPad Air with M2 and the latest M4 iPad Pros.

According to Apple, this is due to a change in the pairing and charging process.

Apple Pencil Pro and iPad Pro

(Image credit: Future)

What's new with the Apple Pencil Pro?

The new model means that Apple is now selling four different versions of Apple Pencil, between the original, the second generation one, the USB-C one, and the Apple Pencil Pro.

In a way, making this just for the latest models does help clear up some confusion, but what can it do?

As was reported last month, the new Apple Pencil Pro offers haptic feedback that pairs with a new "squeeze" gesture that allows a user to change tools with a handy shortcut menu. The Pencil Pro can also roll, using a gyroscope, for more precise control, and it still has hover, which was previously a feature exclusive to the M2 iPad Pro.

We're covering the Apple iPad event as it happens. Follow the Let Loose event LIVE here. Or check out our roundups for all the latest on the new OLED iPad Pro, iPad Air, and the new Apple Pencil

Lloyd Coombes

Lloyd Coombes is a freelance writer with a specialism in Apple tech. From his first, hand-me-down iMac, he’s been working with Apple products for over a decade, and while he loves his iPhone and Mac, the iPad will always have his heart for reasons he still can’t quite fathom. Since moving from blogging to writing professionally, Lloyd’s work can be found at TechRadar, Macworld, TechAdvisor and plenty more. He’s also the Editor in Chief at, and on the rare occasion he’s not writing you’ll find him spending time with his son, or working hard at the gym (while wearing an Apple Watch, naturally). You can find him on Twitter @lloydcoombes.