Apple’s insistence on selling products with both Lightning and USB Type-C ports has led to plenty of frustration, confusion, and bizarre adapters. From the company that revolutionized the headphone dongle comes a new product: the USB-C to Apple Pencil Adapter.
Apple released a new entry-level iPad earlier today (the 10th generation iPad), which has a USB Type-C port, among other upgrades. However, it still only supports the first-generation Apple Pencil, which has a physical connector for charging and not the magnetic charging on the second-gen Pencil. There’s just one problem — the first-gen Pencil uses the Lightning port for charging, and the new iPad only has USB Type-C.
Apple’s solution to this problem was not to add support for the second-gen Pencil, or make a different version of the first-gen Pencil with a Type-C connector. That would make too much sense. Instead, Apple has released an adapter that can only be described as cursed: the new USB-C to Apple Pencil Adapter.
This adapter has a USB Type-C port on one side, and a Lightning port on the other, allowing you to connect the Lightning-based Apple Pencil to a USB Type-C iPad. This abomination of technology is the only way to charge the Pencil, unless you want to occasionally stick it in an iPhone or older iPad, or you buy a third-party charging stand (which isn’t practical for travel). With how silly the first-gen Pencil already looked when charging from an iPad, this adapter makes it stick out even more.
The only sliver of good news is that Apple is now packaging the USB Type-C adapter in the box with the Apple Pencil, according to the updated Apple Store listing. If you already have a first-gen Apple Pencil, and you’re planning on buying the new iPad, you have to buy it on its own for $9.