It was a big deal when Apple brought pressure-sensitivity to iOS devices through its innovative 3D Touch. Apple's user base overflows with creative professionals, a group for which the technology proved very useful. The launch of Apple Pencil took that utility a huge step forward with a familiar pen and paper workflow. Let's have a look at some of the apps that have most benefited from or helped define that brilliant hardware.

  • Pixelmator icon


    Pixelmator has long been a leading alternative to Photoshop and the iOS version's panning and zooming controls provide an incentive to use it over the desktop version. With an Apple Pencil, it's a more powerful incentive. It adds a level of precision to drawing and correction tools that eclipses the desktop's mouse and keyboard combo.

    Commercial Mac iPhone iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Affinity Photo icon

    Affinity Photo

    Affinity Photo was already an outstanding photo editor and potential Photoshop killer before it made its way to iPad. With the iPad release though, it brought the power of desktop image editing to mobile and Apple Pencil support tops it all off with that much needed control for both freehand drawing and painting as well as vector interaction.

    Commercial Mac Windows iPad Ugotsta-image  Jun 2017

  • Notability icon


    Apple Pencil makes it much simpler to put this feature-packed note-taking app to full use. Easily scribble notes and interact with imported PDFs just like real world documents, while simultaneously recording audio such as lectures or work meetings.

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  • Apple Notes icon

    Apple Notes

    Apple Notes is incredibly adept for a bundled app and Apple Pencil makes the iOS version even better, capturing the feel of note-taking and drawing with a real pencil. The on-screen ruler especially is notable, helping to emulate the types of lines drawn with a real ruler.

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  • PDF Expert icon

    PDF Expert

    PDF Expert for iOS takes full advantage of the touch-focused devices. Apple Pencil adds to the level of control and feels like interacting with real documents. Edit, annotate and sign PDFs just like you would with pen and paper.

    Commercial Mac iPhone iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Shapr3D icon


    3D modeling is complex, especially on mobile, but Shapr3D makes it totally feasible. The app is built exclusively for iPad and designed entirely with Apple Pencil in mind, which provides the precision needed for proper modeling.

    Freemium iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • ProtoSketch icon


    ProtoSketch for iPad takes an innovative approach of using a few on-screen buttons to emulate modifier keys used on desktops. It's a brilliant idea that just works, meanwhile an Apple Pencil adds that much needed precision and human touch to round out the control experience for interacting with vector illustrations on the go.

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  • Pigment - Coloring Book icon

    Pigment - Coloring Book

    Pigment is easily one of the best, if not the best, coloring apps for adults. It's made even better with an Apple Pencil which completes the feeling of coloring real pages.

    Freemium Android iPhone Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Procreate icon


    Procreate is truly a showcase for the Apple Pencil. Already adept at realistically representing natural media, the app oozes expressiveness when coupled with the hardware pencil. Tilt it flat to cover larger areas, use more pressure to add weight, all with slightly different effects based on the selected drawing tool.

    Commercial iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Tayasui Sketches icon

    Tayasui Sketches

    Similar to the other drawing apps here, Sketches works especially well with Apple Pencil which is a boon for its excellent tool set that includes fill and area tools, a ruler and pattern tool alongside a full palette of professional brushes.

    Freemium Mac iPhone Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • MyScript Nebo icon

    MyScript Nebo

    Powered by MyScript Interactive Ink, Nebo is designed from the ground up for next-generation styluses like Apple Pen and it's received glowing reviews for its powerful, handwritten note-taking features. Flow charts and diagrams can easily be drawn by hand as well.

    Freemium Windows Android Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • MyScript Calculator icon

    MyScript Calculator

    This calculation app's premise is simple, it solves your hand drawn math equations using handwriting recognition. Sure, you can draw using fingers, but Apple Pencil gives it that natural touch.

    Free Android iPhone Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Adobe Photoshop Sketch icon

    Adobe Photoshop Sketch

    Photoshop Sketch offers well conceived, artistic tools for the mobile artist, including integration with Apple Pencil that takes into account pressure and tilt. All this, with extensive Adobe Cloud integration, makes for a robust, professional workflow.

    Free Android iPhone Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Color Splash icon

    Color Splash

    Color Splash is a dead simple, selective colorization app that does its one task exceedingly well. It turns photos black and white, letting you selectively color them. The Apple Pencil adds a natural level of precision to perfect the app.

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  • Adobe Comp CC icon

    Adobe Comp CC

    Adobe Comp CC is packed with gestures that simplify the process of creating wire-frames and mock-ups. The gestures are accessible by finger but the Apple Pencil yields a more natural feel.

    Free Android iPhone Android Tablet iPad Ugotsta-image  Jan 2017

  • Amaziograph icon


    Amaziograph is a fun and easy way to create beautiful, symmetrical art and it's just so much more fun with Apple Pencil. That extra touch of precision from the Pencil adds a whole world of artistic expression.

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  • Linea icon


    Different from many other drawing apps, Linea keeps the features to a minimal in favor of an interface and design that helps you focus and put your ideas to paper. It's designed exclusively for iPad and Apple Pencil.

    Commercial iPad Ugotsta-image  Feb 2017