Change Apple Pencil double-tap action on your iPad

June 7, 2021

The second-generation Apple Pencil supports tap gestures you can use to speed up certain actions on your iPad. for example, you can quickly switch between the drawing tool and eraser by enabling the Apple Pencil double-tap action. So, if your day-to-day Pencil use involves marking up photos or annotating some PDF files in large numbers, enabling the double-tap customization options is something you should be looking for.

Apple Pencil Charging

How to customize Apple Pencil double-tap action for your iPad

If you are in the Notes app or some other third-party app that supports Apple Pencil double-tap action, you can easily switch between the writing tool or eraser. Simply double-tap the Pencil tip while writing a handwritten note.

  1. Unlock your iPad
  2. Launch the Settings app.
  3. Go to Apple Pencil.
  4. Tap the Apple Pencil entry.
  5. Set the ‘double tap’ gesture to the desired option.
Apple Pencil Second Generation
Apple Pencil Second Generation

Note - The double-tap gesture works with 2nd generation Apple Pencils only.

Apple Pencil Double-Tap settings

Apple's Notes app works well with the new double-tap feature. All you need to do is go to the Settings app.

Apple Pencil Settings
Apple Pencil Settings

Then, scroll down to locate the Apple Pencil entry. When found, tap it to open the Apple Pencil Settings panel.

Apple Pencil Settings Panel
Apple Pencil Settings Panel

Here, set your desired Apple Pencil preferences in the new Settings panel. You’ll have four options to choose from namely,

  • Switch Between Current Tool and Eraser – already set as default.
  • Switch Between Current Tool and Last Used – Let's swap between the existing tool in use and the last used tool.
  • Show Color Palette – Let's you choose from several drawing tools and colors, useful for painting apps.
  • Off – If you have difficulty using the gestures for Apple Pencil (2nd generation) on supported iPad models, this option disables the feature.

That’s how you can speed up certain actions on your iPad using the double-tap gesture of Apple Pencil.

Hope that makes sense!


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Hemant Saxena
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