How to Connect the Apple Pencil to your iPad

Learn how to pair your Apple Pencil. But writing with the Apple Pencil is one thing, and pairing it to your iPad is another. In fact, with there now being two generations of Apple Pencils and a few too many iPad models, you’ll want to make sure you’re buying a compatible duo first and then know the deets for how to connect them together afterward.

Compatibility

The Apple Pencil (1st Gen) is compatible with the following iPad models:

iPad Mini (5th Gen)

iPad (6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th Gen)

iPad (10th Gen) with a dongle

iPad Air (3rd Gen)

iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st and 2nd Gen)

iPad Pro 10.5-inch

iPad Pro 9.7-inch

The Apple Pencil (2nd Gen) is compatible with the following iPad models:

iPad Mini (6th Gen)

iPad Air (4th Gen and later)

iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd Gen and later)

iPad Pro 11-inch (1st Gen and later)

How to pair and charge the Apple Pencil (1st Gen)

At the rounded end of the Apple Pencil is a silver magnetic cap that covers the Pencil’s key to pairing and charging: the Lightning connector. 

Here’s a detailed guide on how to connect your Apple Pencil to your iPad:

Prepare Your iPad: Ensure that your iPad is powered on and unlocked. You should be on the home screen or within an app where you intend to use the Apple Pencil.

Remove the Cap: Carefully remove the cap from the back of your Apple Pencil. The cap is magnetic and should come off easily.

Locate the Lightning Connector: Find the Lightning connector at the end of your Apple Pencil. It’s the small, flat part that you’ll need to insert into your iPad.

Insert the Lightning Connector: Insert the Lightning connector into the Lightning port on your iPad. The Lightning port is typically located along the bottom edge of the iPad.

Pairing Confirmation: Once you insert the Apple Pencil into the Lightning port, your iPad should recognize it. You’ll likely see a pairing confirmation message appear on the screen.

Follow On-Screen Instructions: Follow any on-screen instructions that prompt you to pair the Apple Pencil with your iPad. This may involve tapping «Pair» or similar prompts to confirm the pairing process.

Confirmation and Readiness: After successfully pairing, your Apple Pencil is ready to use with your iPad. You can start using it for drawing, writing, sketching, annotating, and other tasks supported by the Apple Pencil.

How to pair and charge the Apple Pencil (2nd Gen)

With the newer Apple Pencil, the pairing process is simpler and (thankfully) more aesthetically pleasing. 

Like how you would slip a pen or pencil down a notebook’s spiral, the Apple Pencil magnetically attaches to the iPad’s right-hand side when held in portrait orientation.

Once the Apple Pencil magnetically attaches, the iPad should detect the accessory, give you a prompt to continue pairing, and show a brief how-to for how to write with it.

Remember, your Apple Pencil may need to be charged periodically, especially if you use it frequently. Keep an eye on the battery level using the iPad’s Battery widget or the Battery section in Settings.

By following these steps, you can easily connect your Apple Pencil to your iPad and start enjoying its creative and productive capabilities.

If your Apple Pencil won’t pair with your iPad

Connect your Apple Pencil to your iPad:

With Apple Pencil (2nd generation): Center your Apple Pencil on the magnetic connector, which is on the side of your iPad with the volume buttons.

With Apple Pencil (1st generation) and iPad (6th through 9th generations): Remove the cap and plug your Apple Pencil into the Lightning connector on your iPad.

With Apple Pencil (1st generation) and iPad (10th generation): Remove the cap and plug your Apple Pencil and a USB-C cable into the USB-C to Apple Pencil Adapter. Plug the other end of the cable into your iPad.

Restart your iPad, then try to pair again.

Go to Settings > Bluetooth and make sure that Bluetooth is turned on.

On the same screen, find your Apple Pencil under My Devices. If you find it, tap info . Then tap Forget this Device.

Connect your Apple Pencil into your iPad and tap the Pair button when it appears after a few seconds.

If the Pair button doesn’t appear, wait for one minute while your Apple Pencil charges. Then try connecting your Apple Pencil again and wait until the Pair button appears.

If the Pair button still doesn’t appear, contact Apple Support.