Apple has promised to bring back the ability to navigate the iPad Pro with Apple Pencil after removing it in existing iOS 9.3 beta releases. The company accepts that some people like to use the Pencil at the home screen and in menus, and it doesn’t want to stop them.
The Pencil can be used for almost anything in iOS 9.2 — just like any other stylus. But for unknown reasons, Apple decided to take that functionality away with its first four betas of iOS 9.3. Those who have already upgraded to one of these releases can only use the Pencil as a drawing tool.
After complaints from iPad Pro owners online, Apple has now confirmed it will reverse that change in the next iOS 9.3 seed. In a statement to The Verge, the company said:
Apple Pencil has been a huge hit with iPad Pro users, who love it for drawing, annotating and taking notes. We believe a finger will always be the primary way users navigate on an iPad, but we understand that some customers like to use Apple Pencil for this as well and we’ve been working on ways to better implement this while maintaining compatibility during this latest beta cycle. We will add this functionality back in the next beta of iOS 9.3.
It’s still unclear why Apple made this change with iOS 9.3. Perhaps it was unintentional, but that seems unlikely with it missing from four beta seeds. Either way, those who own an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil can look forward to it coming back soon.