Tips

How to charge your first generation Apple Pencil

AppleInsider may earn an affiliate commission on purchases made through links on our site.

The redesigned 10.9-inch iPad has a USB-C port that will not charge the Apple Pencil without an adapter. Yet there are other ways to charge the Apple Pencil that might be more convenient.

This isn't the first time that the Apple Pencil has required some kind of an adapter. Right from the start when it was introduced in 2015, Apple included a small adapter that would allow you to connect a Lightning cable to the Pencil for charging.

It still does, at least with the first-generation Apple Pencil. So you can still use that, if you have a Lightning cable, and the new adapter may be $9 for existing owners, but that's cheaper and easier than buying a new Apple Pencil and a new iPad to use it with.

Or it is easier, if you have the adapter to hand when you need it. If you haven't got it yet and you need to charge now, you need alternatives - and there are many.

Lightning to Lightning

Just for completeness, note that officially the only way to get that 2015-style adapter is to buy a first-generation Apple Pencil. You cannot purchase another one off of Apple's website.

Apple's service departments at retail can — but don't always — offer them for purchase. However, Amazon sells third-party Lightning-to-Lightning adapters that are typically under $10.

Lightning to USB-C

With the new iPad 10.9 inch adopting a USB-C port and replacing the previously existing Lightning port, the Apple Pencil (first generation) can no longer directly connect to the iPad. To solve this solution, Apple has included a Lightning-to-USB-C adapter with every purchase of the first-generation Apple Pencil.

First you connect this Apple Pencil to one end of the adapter, then you connect the other side of the adapter to a USB-C cable. Then you connect that USB-C cable into the iPad. It is one long and tedious way to charge and connect your Apple Pencil, but it works in the end.

While the adapter comes in the box for free, this time Apple does sell additional ones in case you lose it or need another one for any reason. You can purchase another adapter for $9 from Apple's store.

Female Lightning to USB-A

If you are looking for a direct charging cable for your first-generation Apple Pencil and do not want an adapter connected to the two, you can usually find a female lightning to USB-A charger on Amazon for under $10.

For instance, the PAINICA Apple Pencil Charging Adapter Cable allows you to plug your Apple Pencil directly into its port, and then plug in the USB-A plug into a power source.

This cable is measured at five feet long and weighs 1.13 ounces. Note that it can't be used as a Lightning charging cable extender.

The PAINICA Apple Pencil Charging Adapter Cable - and others similar to it - can be purchased for around $8.

Charging stand

If you want to have a more organized and cleaner look when charging your first-generation Apple Pencil, then a charging stand might work for you. This method would allow you to plug in your first-generation Apple Pencil directly into power, and keep it in one place without the fear of losing it.

The TiMOVO Charging Stand allows you to charge this Apple Pencil seamlessly and effortlessly without any hassle to it. The Charging Stand also has an indent to put the cap of your first-generation Apple Pencil when charging so you do not lose it too.

The Charging Stand has a battery indicator that tells you how much charge your first-generation Apple Pencil has acquired. Once the battery indicator stops blinking, it means the Pencil is fully charged.

There is also a USB-A port on the side of the device for you to plug in and charge another device as well. It provides 12W of power and can charge anything from a phone to a tablet.

The charging stand can be purchased from around $16 to $20.

Logitech Crayon

Alternatively, if you want to have a powerful writing utensil but do not want to charge it with an adapter every time, you could skip the Apple Pencil altogether. Instead, you can consider the Logitech Crayon.

The Logitech Crayon is an alternative to the Apple Pencil and has almost all the same functionalities as it as well. The only feature it is missing is pressure sensitivity.

Unlike the Apple Pencil which plugs into a Lightning adapter, the Crayon allows you to plug in a USB-C charger directly into the device. So there's no need for an adapter to connect it to a charging source.

The Logitech Crayon is compatible with the iPad Air (4th and 5th generation), iPad Pro (1st to 6th generation), iPad mini (6th generation), and iPad (10th generation). The Crayon will typically get seven hours of use from a single charge.

The Logitech Crayon costs $69.95 on Apple's website.

Continue the charge

The old first-generation Apple Pencil might have a weird way of charging with the new iPad 10.9 inch having a USB-C port, but there are many ways to get a full battery on it.

Through adapters, cables, and charging stands, there are a bunch of options to pick from when deciding how you want to keep your Pencil fully charged throughout the day or at night. Having another option for a writing utensil entirely - with the Logitech Crayon - is another great option to look at.