When Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone more than a decade ago, the late co-founder of Apple famously mocked smartphones on the market that relied on a stylus for user input. However, new rumors suggest that Apple might be preparing to sell a version of its Apple Pencil stylus for its rumored upcoming iPhone model likely dubbed the "iPhone Pro."
The new rumors come after a manufacturer seemed to post photos of a case for the upcoming iPhone model with a spot for a miniature version of the Apple Pencil on the back, per Digital Trends.
Apple unveiled the Apple Pencil in 2015 as a pressure-sensitive device that aimed to replicate the experience of using the classic writing utensil of the same name. The company touted that the stylus was different than other competitive offerings as it aimed to more accurately emulate the experience of using analog writing utensils on paper, according to a report from The Telegraph.
This isn't the first time that rumors about Apple bringing a version of its popular iPad stylus to the iPhone have circulated. In 2016, Apple CEO Tim Cook seemed to have a slip-of-the-tongue moment when he said people were using the Apple Pencil on both iPhone and iPad. While it could have been a simple mistake, some believed that Apple might one day make a version of a pencil compatible with a future iPhone model, according to 9to5Mac.
The Cupertino, California-based company updated the Apple Pencil in 2018 with new features that included a new design, new double-tap feature, and the ability to wirelessly charge the stylus by placing it on top of the company's iPad Pro models that were released last year. Notably, the first-generation Apple Pencil was charged by plugging the device into the iPad's lightning port. The newer Apple Pencil, however, is only compatible with the 2018 iPad Pro models and is not compatible with Apple's other iPad offerings, per MacWorld.Apple news website 9to5Mac suggested that if Apple offers Apple Pencil support on its "iPhone Pro," it would be in an attempt to justify the "Pro" name for the phone, which is also expected to receive major upgrades to its camera system.
Apple is expected to launch its next-generation phones at an event next month, which the company has typically announced in September. The iPhones will follow Apple's current lineup, which includes the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and its more affordable iPhone XR model.
Rumors have also circulated that Apple is preparing to launch new models of its iPad and MacBook Pro computer in a 16-inch variant.