Apple advances their future iPen with a continuous handwriting UI and processor system

“Over the years Apple has had some massive projects supported by a huge body of patents before the invention ever came to market,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple.

“For example, the one-time iWallet invention that was covered extensively by Patently Apple took years to come to market as Apple’s ‘Wallet’ formerly ‘Passbook,'” Purcher reports. “Apple’s iPen/handwriting recognition patents project is yet another invention that has a massive body of supporting patents that could be reviewed in our Archives. The sheer number of patents on this project would strongly suggest that this feature will one day become a market reality. It’s been rumored for the longest time that the iPad Pro may introduce this feature.”

“Today, the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office published yet another patent application from Apple on this subject matter,” Purcher reports. “At this time it’s unknown as to what handwriting and pen related features will finally make it to market. But for now, Apple’s latest invention reveals another piece of the puzzle: Their handwriting recognition software architecture will involve a number of very specific processors to make the iPen experience work flawlessly if not magically, whenever it finally arrives.”

Much more, including Apple’s patent application illustrations, in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple’s smart-pen patents keep piling up!

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Apple granted another smart pen patent for capturing digital copies of notes and drawings – December 30, 2014
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iPen? Apple secretly files three dynamic smart-pen patents in Europe – February 28, 2013
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Apple patent app details smart, heated ‘iPen’ stylus for iPad and iPhone – July 7, 2011
Apple patent application details new type of stylus for iPad – February 3, 2011


  1. Once the Newton got handwriting recognition right in the MessagePad 2100, it was a joy to use. I would love to have that capability working as seamlessly in the iPad.

    1. My sentiments exactly. After progressing through the short training sessions the Newton 2100 processes cursive as well as handwritten text near flawlessly. The training sessions teach the Newton your unique handwriting style, accounting for such things as, character kearning, writing speed, word spacing, slant, and others, but once completed you could take handwritten notes and either have them transcribed and spoken, or used a text input in any app accepting text. I have yet to encounter ANYTHING, ANYWHERE that even come remotely close…. So how is this in anyway different from apples 1997 Newton 2100?

  2. While Apple has been working on handwriting recognition since about 1990, it’s about time to bring it to the public in a popular device.

    Just one thought: if they can integrate handwriting recognition and something like an equivalent to MathType in an iPad Pro (at decent size, weight, and battery lifetime) then each and every engineering and science major (and a large fraction of professionals as well) will be buying one within days (or at most weeks) of it becoming available.

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