The Apple Pencil Stylus only works with the iPad Pro for now but that might be changing in the not so distant future as Apple submits a patent application for a new stylus that can write on any surface it is pressed against and can even write in mid-air.
According to the patent application, this is made possible by camera sensors mounted on top of a laptop or monitor. The scribblings of the stylus will be tracked through space via these cameras. The patent application is titled “Content Creation Using Electronic Input Device on Non-Electronic Surfaces”. The name suggests that it will be able to write on normal paper as well.
An alternative input method mentioned in the patent by Apple engineers in the patent would be to use a force-sensitive nib at the tip of the stylus to record strokes and taps. The pen will have the freedom to move around in 3D space and will allow the users to work on 3D designs as well as 2D drawings.
The application demonstrates the stylus being used input handwritten notes, shapes, and 3D objects into a laptop. This makes the new device capable of a lot more than being a simple stylus. According to the patent application, the stylus would also feature a feedback system which will be transmitted in the form of buzzes and LED lights.
The thing with patents is that they represent what is going on at the drawing board of the company at the moment and there is no guarantee that the product will actually make it to the market. However, it is still an exciting prospect if it ever does go on sale.
This shows the way Apple looks at MacBooks and iPads in the future and it is an excellent way to keep up with rivals like Microsoft and Samsung that have styluses of their own. We will have to wait and see how long we have to wait before we can write in mid-air.