When Apple introduced the second-gen Apple Pencil, the company also introduced new gestures. This involved tapping on the side of the stylus to change functionality, such as switching back and forth between the pen tool and the eraser tool, for example, but future Apple Pencils could come with a new feature.
This is according to a patent discovered by Patently Apple where they found a patent from Apple that suggests that the company could be looking into a “slide” gesture for the stylus. Based on the patent’s description, it sounds like users can just slide their fingers along the side of the Apple Pencil and in turn, it could change functions like increase or decrease the brush size of the pen, paintbrush, or eraser tool.
It is possible that the sliding gesture could also be used to zoom in or out on an image or website, making it useful for iPad users who might not want to touch their displays and are looking for alternative forms of input. What’s interesting is that the patent also suggests that this could work for computers, although don’t get your hopes up as Apple doesn’t seem to be bringing Apple Pencil support to other devices anytime soon.
That being said, this is a patent so it’s hard to say if it will become an actual feature. We did hear rumors that Apple was planning a third-gen Apple Pencil but it was not announced at the company’s Spring Loaded event last week.