What it is: Apple released a new version of the Apple Pencil and its gestures foreshadow the future of wearables.
The first Apple Pencil was kind of clumsy. You could plug it into an iPad’s Lightning port, but if you wanted to put it into a wall outlet, you had to use a tiny adapter that was easy to lose. Apple’s new Apple Pencil is different because it charges wirelessly, connects magnetically to the side of the iPad Pro so you can’t lose it as easily, and recognizes taps to give commands to switching menu options.
That last feature is the most interesting because by tapping the side of the Apple Pencil, you can convert it from a drawing tool to an eraser tool (and vice versa). Now take this tape gesture control interface and apply it to wearable computers such as smart glasses. Tap the side of the smart glasses frame and you’ll be able to control it. Slide your finger along the smart glasses frame and you should have another way to control it. Tap with two fingers compared to one finger and you have yet another way to control smart glasses.
Tap gestures in the Apple Pencil 2 foreshadow the use of tap gestures in smart glasses. Touch gestures such as sliding your finger along a smart glasses frame offers another way to control the device. With wearable computers, you can’t control it through traditional mouse and graphical user interface, so you’ll have to use touch gestures instead.
What we see in the Apple Pencil 2 is just a precursor of the future. The Apple Pencil is a useful tool for people who need drawing capabilities, but not necessarily useful for people who simply write or view content on an iPad. What is important is the user interface of the Apple Pencil 2. Watch the Apple Pencil evolve and notice how tap gestures evolve too, because when Apple introduces smart glasses, you can be sure those same tap gestures that control an Apple Pencil will be used to control smart glasses as well.