How to Charge Your Apple Pencil In 3 Steps, With Photos

Logitech Crayon vs Apple Pencil

How to Charge Your Apple Pencil In 3 Steps, With Photos

Key Points

  • The Apple Pencil is a versatile tool that enhances the creative and productive capabilities of the iPad.
  • It allows for precise drawing and sketching, efficient writing and note-taking, and increased productivity across various applications.
  • Charging methods differ between the 1st and 2nd generation Apple Pencil. The 1st generation requires a Lightning port, while the 2nd generation charges wirelessly by magnetically snapping to the iPad.

The Apple Pencil turned plenty of heads when it was first announced in 2015. While far from a perfect product in its 1st generation, the accessory nevertheless enjoyed plenty of purchases from creatives, professionals, and hobbyists alike. The 2nd generation of the Apple-branded stylus arrived in 2018 and improved on many of the 1st generation’s shortcomings. Yet, one question lingers: How do you charge your Apple Pencil? We’ve created this walkthrough to help you learn how it’s done — for both 1st and 2nd generation products alike.

What’s the Point of an Apple Pencil?

Best Drawing Apps for the iPad
The Apple Pencil is great for art, productivity, note-taking, and more.

©Iryna Imago/Shutterstock.com

The Apple Pencil is a powerful, versatile tool designed to enhance the creative and productive capabilities of the iPad. Despite its appearance, it’s so much more than just an ordinary stylus. it offers a range of unique features that make it an indispensable accessory for Apple users of all kinds. Before discussing charging methods, let’s explore three key features the Apple Pencil can help you perform.

Best for Drawing
Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
  • Imperceptible lag
  • Tilt and pressure sensitivity
  • Magnetically attaches to the iPad
  • Charges wirelessly
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11/26/2023 02:36 am GMT


The Apple Pencil allows you to draw and sketch on your iPad with remarkable precision and sensitivity. Its advanced sensors detect pressure and tilt, allowing you to create intricate lines, shades, and textures unlike anything you’ve ever seen on the iPad before. It’s just like using traditional art tools, only completely digitized. Whether you’re an aspiring artist or just doodling for fun, the Apple Pencil elevates your digital art experience to a whole new level previously unseen on the iPad.


Similar to our previous point, the Apple Pencil also makes writing on the iPad more efficient and precise. Activities like note-taking or annotating have never been more effortless. With the Apple Pencil, you can jot down handwritten notes directly on your iPad or annotate PDFs and documents with ease. Best of all, the palm rejection technology ensures that your hand won’t interfere with your writing or drawing. Plus, the ability to convert your handwritten notes into text makes organization a breeze — no matter if you’re in a meeting, lecture, or brainstorming session.


Lastly, there’s the increased productivity provided by the Apple Pencil. This device integrates seamlessly with a wide range of iPad apps, transforming your tablet into a productivity powerhouse unlike anything you’ve experienced before. You can edit photos with pinpoint accuracy in apps like Adobe Photoshop, mark up documents in Pages, or create detailed diagrams in apps like Procreate. The Apple Pencil is not limited to just drawing or writing — it enhances your overall efficiency and creativity across various applications, making it an invaluable tool for all.

How to Charge Your Apple Pencil (1st Generation)

Works with 10th Gen iPad and Earlier
Apple Pencil (1st Generation)
  • Features pressure sensitivity, tilt, and imperceptible lag
  • Works the same as a normal pencil, but instead of paper, draw and write on the iPad
  • Lightning adapter, USB-C to lightning adapter, and extra tip included
  • Uses lightning adapter to charge
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11/26/2023 01:21 am GMT

Learning how to charge your Apple Pencil will depend on what generation of the product you have — 1st generation or 2nd. The former was released in November 2015, is completely cylindrical all the way around, and features a detachable cap with a Lightning charger. The latter was released in November 2018, features one flat side to prevent rolling, and relies on a magnetic wireless charging connector instead of the Lightning charger of the 1st generation. Let’s first discuss how to charge your Apple Pencil 1st generation.

Step One: Remove Cap

Apple Pencil with cap removed.
Remove the cap from your Apple Pencil to reveal the charger.


First, remove the magnetic cap on the tail end of the Apple Pencil. This will reveal the Lightning connector hidden underneath the cap. Make sure you don’t lose the cap! It’s prone to rolling when placed on its side. Try placing it upright to keep it in place. If you don’t have a cap on your Apple Pencil, then you can skip ahead to the section on charging an Apple Pencil 2nd generation.

Step Two: Attach Connector

Apple Pencil with dongle attachment.
Plug the dongle into the Lightning charger.


This step is optional. If you’d rather use the iPad to charge the Apple Pencil, then you can proceed to the next step. If you want to charge the Apple Pencil with a cable, you can attach the dongle that comes in the box. This female-to-female Lightning adapter is included with all Apple Pencil 1st generation shipments. There is also a USB-C version available for purchase.

Step Three: Plug Into Port

Apple Pencil charging via Lightning dongle.
Connect the Lightning charger to the Apple Pencil.


Now, plug the Apple Pencil in. Whether you attach it to your iPad’s Lightning port or to a Lightning cable, the Apple Pencil will begin charging once inserted. To be clear, it cannot be used while charging — even when attached to a cable. It typically takes around 10 minutes to fully charge. Just 15 seconds on the charger will give you 30 minutes of use.

How to Charge Your Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)

Apple Pencil charging on iPad.
Attach an Apple Pencil 2nd generation to the side of the iPad to charge wirelessly.


Have a 2nd generation product instead? Learning how to charge your particular Apple Pencil is even easier than the steps listed above. Simply bring the Apple Pencil 2nd generation close to your iPad and wait for it to snap to the tablet magnetically. Then, watch for a pop-up on the screen to notify you of its charging status. It should reach fully charged just as fast as a 1st generation. If you’re having trouble, make sure the flat side of the Apple Pencil is the side touching the iPad. You may also want to ensure your Pencil is compatible with your iPad model in the first place.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I charge my Apple Pencil?

Instructions for charging your Apple Pencil depend on whether you have a 1st or 2nd generation accessory. For 1st generation models, remove the cap and insert the Lightning charger into the iPad. Or, use the included dongle to charge with a Lightning cable. For 2nd generation products, simply attach the flat end of the pencil to the magnetic charging area on your iPad. It will start charging wirelessly.

How long does it take to charge the Apple Pencil fully?

Charging the Apple Pencil doesn’t take very long at all. In just 15 seconds, you can get about 30 minutes of use. In ten minutes, the Apple Pencil will reach 100% battery. This will give you around 12 hours of use before needing a charge again. Even if your iPad has a low battery, it can still charge the Apple Pencil (as long as it has some power left to share).

How do I know when my Apple Pencil is fully charged?

When your Apple Pencil is connected and charging, a notification will appear on your iPad’s screen. This will indicate its charging status and let you know when it’s fully charged. No need to worry about overcharging. Apple Pencils are designed to prevent overcharge situations, so they’ll stay in optimal condition.

Can I use my Apple Pencil while it's charging?

No, you cannot use your Apple Pencil while it’s connected and charging. Apple limits this feature for performance reasons. If they allowed people to use the Apple Pencil while attached to the Lightning cable, then the device would not be able to keep up with the high standards Apple sets for the device compared to being fully charged and removed from the charger.

What if my Apple Pencil isn't charging?

If you’re having problems charging a 1st generation Apple Pencil, check to make sure the dongle and the Lightning cable are attached properly. If you’re facing charging issues with a 2nd generation device, ensure that the Apple Pencil is securely attached to the magnetic area on your iPad. Regardless of generation, you should also check for any debris or obstructions that might be interfering with charging.

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