Why is the Apple Pencil so Expensive?

Apple’s accessories often come with a premium price tag – from the HomePod costing $300+ through to a variety of accessories, it’s not news to us Apple aficionados that the products we’re buying are expensive (though with a higher price comes a premium product).

The Apple Pencil is no exception. The second generation Apple Pencil for the latest iPad Pro models retails for $129, while the first generation for older iPads is still $99.

If we compare this to other stylus pens that can be purchased online, those are some pretty steep prices. So why exactly is the Apple Pencil so expensive? Let’s look at the reasons why you pay more for Apple.

Better Quality Technology

Like most Apple products, you’re essentially paying a premium for a higher quality device.

The Apple Pencil uses highly accurate sensors to detect precise tilt and orientation, which is much more accurate than a cheap stylus from Amazon.

This allows you to make thicker or thinner lines in apps by angling the Pencil, replicating the experience of a real pencil or pen. It also has a long battery life in comparison to other stylus available.

The Pencil also has low latency, with a 9ms delay between moving the tip and seeing the corresponding line appear on the iPad’s display.

Other features include the ability to detect when you’re pressing harder for creating darker lines or shading, as well as complete integration between hardware and software for flawless palm rejection.

Though it seems like a basic stylus, there’s actually a lot of cutting-edge technology that’s packed into the Apple Pencil.

When we consider that Apple also use custom designs many of the chips and sensors themselves. All of this advanced tech doesn’t come cheap.

High Quality Materials

It is not just the internal technology that we need to consider, but the materials that are used to craft the devices too.

Apple put considerable amount of time into engineering the physical construction of the Apple Pencil – the exterior is precision milled from a single solid piece of plastic, giving it a sturdy yet light feel.

The matte finish provides ideal grip and doesn’t get slippery with moisture or oils from your hand, and the removable outer cap reveals an even narrower cylindrical grip area.

The overall design shows Apple’s typical attention to detail, with every aspect carefully considered – and the premium materials used for all Apple products don’t tend to come cheap.

Integration with Apple ecosystem

The Apple Pencil is designed to work with compatible iPad models, and you’re essentially paying a premium for this.

When you buy into any technology ecosystem, whether it’s Apple, Amazon’s Alexa’s or Google Home, you want devices that work flawlessly with each other.

And the truth is that this kind of integration with iPadOS and various apps requires significant software development and optimization, which contributes to the cost.

Apple’s brand reputation

Which brings me onto my final point – at this stage, Apple is known for its premium pricing strategy across its product lines.

We all know that we’re paying more than we would with Android or Windows devices, and Apple’s reputation for quality and innovation allows it to command higher prices than many of its competitors.

While there are third-party styluses available for iPads, they lack the advanced features and integration of the Apple Pencil.

This lack of direct competition in the high-end tablet stylus market allows Apple to maintain its premium pricing, even if it rules some potential customers out of purchasing.

While the costs may scare some buyers away, there are still millions of us that accept the premium pricing over third-party stylus alternatives – as long as we’re getting a superior product.

And whilst Apple still does this, they’ll rule the mobile market, the laptop market, and the tablet market too, which includes the justifiably-expensive Apple Pencil.



Full-time writer, Apple fanboy and macOS supremacist. Currently running: 16" Macbook Pro w/ 64GB RAM & M1 Max. Already wants to upgrade to the M3 😫😭

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