Using Apple Pencil

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Apple Pencil is great for annotating and more, and we’ve optimized forScore to give you the best possible performance while also providing a number of highly customizable settings to ensure that every user can work as naturally as possible.

Apple sells multiple versions of Apple Pencil, each compatible with different iPad models. Apple also worked with Logitech to create several versions of the Crayon stylus which is, in Apple’s words, “built using Apple Pencil technology” and functions similarly. The features and settings described below apply to all three styluses, except where noted.

Drawing

Live Annotations

Version 9.3 added the ability to annotate by simply drawing on the page with Apple Pencil (removing the need to activate annotation mode first). Use the “automatically enter annotation mode” option in the Apple Pencil section of forScore’s settings panel to toggle this behavior.

Because forScore remembers which drawing preset or tool you were using the last time you annotated, and because Live Annotation starts immediately, it can get confusing to keep track of exactly what will happen when you begin drawing with Apple Pencil. With forScore 9.4 or newer, additional settings allow you to control how this works: check and uncheck tool types to either allow them to be saved between annotation sessions or not. Or, if you prefer, simply set a default drawing tool that will always be active every time you start annotating.

Instant Annotations

Version 10.1 added another setting, called “automatically exit annotation mode” that works in conjunction with the “automatically enter annotation mode” option. This setting allows you to start drawing with Apple Pencil, but does not show the annotation toolbar and automatically saves your work and returns to the normal viewing mode after a delay. This setting’s options are “short” (a very quick delay), “long” (a slightly longer pause), or “never” (annotation mode stays active until you explicitly save or cancel your changes, annotation controls appear normally).

On iPads that support Apple Pencil hover detection, forScore also uses proximity to determine when you’re finished annotating. As long as Apple Pencil is near the screen, annotation remains active and your changes are not saved until you move the pencil tip farther away.

Preventing Finger Drawing

Version 10.0 introduced a setting called “prevent finger drawing” that allows you to use your fingers to do things like change tools or zoom in on the page, but only allows Apple Pencil to draw or place stamps and shapes. If you’re using forScore versions 10.0-10.4.9, this setting only applies when you’ve entered annotation mode by touching the Pencil to the page (see Live Annotations above). If you activate annotation mode using any other method, like the default tap and hold gesture, forScore will recognize finger input as it normally does. This is intended to allow you to annotate with your finger even when Apple Pencil is connected but out of reach.

With forScore 10.5 this setting was changed to no longer depend on how annotation mode is activated. Instead, forScore disables drawing if Apple Pencil has touched the screen at any point within the last 15 minutes. If your Pencil is out of reach or out of power, tap the hand icon in the center of the annotation control toolbar to re-enable touch drawing. Touch drawing will remain enabled until the next time you touch the screen with Apple Pencil.

Variable Width

To provide a more natural, expressive annotation experience, forScore increases the width of your markings based on several factors. When you’re using Apple Pencil, it does this by monitoring both pressure and tilt; otherwise it relies on your drawing speed instead. In forScore’s settings panel, you can adjust how pronounced this effect is and, if needed, disable pressure sensitivity, tilt sensitivity, or both. (Note that Logitech Crayon does not feature pressure sensitivity, only tilt.)

Gestures

Double TapforScore 10.5

The front third of certain Apple Pencil models can be double tapped to perform certain actions depending on which app you’re using. Apple provides a system setting that influences how other apps should generally behave, and forScore responds as logically as possible to each while in annotation mode. “Switch between current tool and eraser” and “switch between current and last used tool” work as stated, while “show color palette” opens the currently selected tool’s options, if applicable, so you can adjust its properties as needed. If you choose “off” forScore will ignore this gesture entirely.

By default this gesture only works while you’re in annotation mode, but with forScore 11.1 you can allow it to change annotation tools at all times by adjusting the “switch tools” option in the Apple Pencil section of forScore’s settings panel (great if you use the instant annotation settings described above). Otherwise, if you prefer to repurpose the gesture and allow it to perform a different task whenever annotation mode is inactive, you can assign it to any of the options available in the “Page Turners & Shortcuts” settings panel.

SqueezeforScore 14.2

Apple Pencil Pro features a squeeze gesture that can be used in similar ways as the double tap gesture (iPadOS 17.5 or later required). An additional option in the Settings app presents a contextual palette which is implemented in forScore as a radial tool picker, and this gesture is also available for use in the “Page Turners & Shortcuts” section of forScore’s settings panel.

HoverforScore 14.0

When using certain models of iPad and Apple Pencil with iPadOS 16.1 or later, forScore can detect when Pencil is near the screen and shows a preview of the currently selected annotation tool before you start drawing. If you’re a forScore Pro subscriber you can do even more: while Pencil is hovering, use customizable pinch, swipe, and tap gestures to resize or cycle through presets, undo or redo drawings, or show a radial tool picker that makes accessing your presets faster and easier than ever.

Compatibility

For the latest compatibility information for all Apple Pencil models, please visit support.apple.com. For more information regarding Logitech Crayon models, visit logitech.com.

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