How Long Does an Apple Pencil Battery Last?

Logitech Crayon vs Apple Pencil

How Long Does an Apple Pencil Battery Last?

Key Points

  • The Apple Pencil is one of the most precise tablet stylus options on the market.
  • The first-generation Apple Pencil relies on a Lightning connection to charge, while the second-generation one uses induction charging.
  • The Apple Pencil is suited for digital art, note-taking, and precise browsing on the iPad.
  • The battery life of the Apple Pencil is around 12 hours of constant use.
  • Regular use and good charging habits are important for maximizing the lifespan of the Apple Pencil.

How long does an Apple Pencil battery last? The Apple Pencil is one of the most precise tablet stylus options on the market currently. Apple’s unique take on the integrated stylus has been an expensive but fantastic inclusion to the iPad line. Simply put, if you’ve got a compatible iPad, you should have an Apple Pencil.

However, there isn’t much in the way of hard data provided by Apple in terms of how long you can expect the battery to last. But, worry not, because both the first and second-generation Apple Pencils have been put to the test to see how long they can stay in use.

Understanding the Apple Pencil Line

The Apple Pencil line comes in two primary formats. The first generation is the killer tool introduced with the iPad Pro and features the same pressure sensitivity and palm rejection seen across the entire product line. This one is a bit of an odd duck in the marketplace today and still relies on a Lightning connection to charge.

Best for Drawing
Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
  • Imperceptible lag
  • Tilt and pressure sensitivity
  • Magnetically attaches to the iPad
  • Charges wirelessly
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The second-generation Apple Pencil is an overall sleeker device. You don’t need to remove the device from your tablet to charge it, provided you’re running a compatible iPad Pro or iPad Air. Modern iPad users should have an Apple Pencil; it makes manipulating the device with more precise inputs an absolute joy.


The Apple Pencil comes with a list of great features that make it one of the best stylus options you can get. It has active palm rejection, tilt sensitivity, and precise inputs. This is all brought together with extremely low latency, especially for a Bluetooth device like this.

Whether you’re using a first- or second-generation Pencil, you’ve got one of the most precise input devices you can find for your iPad. Not only is it precise, it is dead simple to pair with your iPad, as well. If you’ve got the right iPad and Apple Pencil, pairing is as simple as tapping the screen with the stylus.

The second-generation Apple Pencil brings some new features to the fore, as well, like touch gestures and inductive charging. It does cost more to get a compatible iPad for the second-generation Pencil, but it is a must-have if you spend a lot of time on your tablet.

Use Cases

The Apple Pencil is suited for a variety of different tasks. You could very easily use it for digital art, with apps like Procreate and Affinity Illustrator providing a unique workflow built around its unique functions. It also finds great use in fields like academia, where you can take notes in real time, like a notebook without having to flip a page.

Jam-Packed with Features
Apple 2022 11-inch iPad Pro (4th Generation)
  • 8-core CPU and 10‑core GPU
  • Wi-Fi 6E connectivity
  • Features technologies like ProMotion, True Tone, P3 wide color, and ultralow reflectivity
  • iPadOS makes the device more intuitive
  • 11-inch Liquid Retina display (2388 x 1668)
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You can also just use it as a more precise way of browsing around your iPad. Getting used to lounging around with the Pencil in hand while reading the news is a bit cumbersome. However, you won’t suffer from misclicking links or touching the wrong thing.

Charging Method

The first-generation Apple Pencil relies on a Lightning connection to charge, much like all iPhones, aside from the latest 15. Most users in the Apple ecosystem likely have one of these cables floating around, so it makes for a handy way to charge the device itself. It does lead to some odd instances where the battery gets low and you have to stop using it to plug the device in, however.

The second-generation Apple Pencil uses induction charging. If you’re using a newer iPad Air or iPad Pro, charging is as simple as placing it on the plate on the side of the tablet. Once in place, you’ll receive a notification on-screen letting you know the device’s current charge level. It should also signify that it is charging.

Device Compatibility

Apple’s device compatibility with the Apple Pencil is all over the place. Generally speaking, older iPad Pros, the third-generation iPad Air, and newer base model iPads can use the first-generation Pencil. This also extends to the fifth-generation iPad Mini.

The second-generation Apple Pencil is compatible with newer devices like the latest iPad Mini, iPad Air, and both the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models. You don’t get access to the first-generation device with these newer iPads. So, you’ll have to upgrade if you have an older Pencil.

What Affects How Long an Apple Pencil Battery Lasts?

There are a few different factors that go into how long your Apple Pencil battery will last.


Constant use will wear your battery down, as you might expect. Apple’s given battery life for both Apple Pencils is around 12 hours of constant use. Now, it’s difficult to imagine anyone handwriting or drawing for 12 hours. But, you could very easily spend that much time using the device throughout the day.

You can charge the 2nd generation Apple Pencil wirelessly by attaching it to the side of your iPad.

The Apple Pencil battery excels at being used; it’s a portable device, after all. You’ll want to make regular use of it in your daily workflow to get the best out of it. There isn’t really an appreciable difference in the overall performance between the two different generations, at least in terms of battery life.

Sitting Idle

If you don’t leave your Pencil plugged in, you can expect to lose around 5 to 10% battery life daily. That means you’ve got roughly ten days at minimum before you’ll need to charge the Pencil again. Now, if you’re using a second-generation Pencil, this is less of a concern. However, you’ll want to keep an eye on the first-generation Pencil. The first-gen’s lack of induction charging means you’ll need a wall outlet to charge.

Good Charging Habits

How often should you be charging your Apple Pencil? There really isn’t a right or a wrong way of using the device. That said, getting into good charging habits as you would with a laptop or tablet is paramount to maximizing the device’s lifespan.

It isn’t necessarily a bad thing to charge the device after use. You’ll need to make sure there is at least some appreciable decrease in the battery life. With the second-generation Pencil, it can be very tempting to just plug it right back in after using it. However, if you leave it sitting apart from the device, you could maximize the wear cycles on the battery cells.

Apple doesn’t have a given lifespan on the device. This is odd given that you typically expect between three to five years for most rechargeable batteries. That said, you’ve got plenty of time to maximize the use and enjoy your Apple Pencil.

Choosing the Right Apple Pencil for Your Device

Picking the right tool isn’t about simply choosing the Apple Pencil battery that lasts longer. You’ll have to spend a bit of time deciding which tablet you want out of the Apple product line. This is a necessary step before purchasing the accompanying stylus.

That said, the Apple Pencil is a wonderful addition that enriches the overall use of your iPad. If you haven’t tried one, you’re seriously missing out on one of the most innovative pieces of tech Apple has introduced to its entire product line.

Thankfully, Apple is still selling both stylus options readily at a variety of different retailers. It would be an absolute shame to purchase a new iPad and not have the right stylus readily available to accompany it. At any rate, you won’t be left in the lurch when trying to consider battery life for either stylus. The Apple Pencil battery is the one constant between both generations, with only the features changing with the newer device.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you charge an Apple Pencil while using it?

No, it’ll either need to be plugged in or connected to your iPad while charging.

Can you use an Apple Pencil with an iPhone?

No, the Apple Pencil is only compatible with the iPad line of devices.

Can you pair any Apple Pencil with an iPad?

You will need to get the right Apple Pencil for your iPad. The latest iPad Pro doesn’t allow for the use of a first-generation Apple Pencil, for example.

Is the Apple Pencil good for digital art?

Yes, it is one of the best devices you can purchase for creating digital art.

Can I use the Apple Pencil for taking notes?

The Apple Pencil does come with support for taking notes through any number of handwriting apps.

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