Sketchbook Pro ½ Off Pro Membership this Week

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Sketchbook Pro

If you are into drawing, sketching or want to learn more about it, this week AutoDesk is offering 50% off their normal $29 annual fee for the professional version of their desktop app. With your paid membership, you get access to pro features on both your iOS device and Mac. The promo code appears to be SKETCHSAVE50 although you may not need to use it to get the savings.

The Sketchbook Pro mobile app has been optimized for use with the iPadPro and Pencil. You can learn about the mobile app here.

Sketchbook Drawing

Visit https://www.sketchbook.com to learn more about the advantages of membership for your desktop. You can always download the app and use the limited features for free.


iPad Pro Smart Keyboard Support

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Credit Apple Inc.

Credit Apple Inc.

Apple has posted a support page related to using the Smart Keyboard with iPad Pro.

The page describes how to connect your iPad Pro to the Smart Keyboard, various positions for the keyboard (Typing, Watching) and describes some keyboard shortcuts.


The one downside to those who like to envelope their iPad is that the Keyboard smart cover does not protect the back of the iPad.

iPad Pro Silicone Case

You will want to get the iPad Pro Silicone Case to protect the back. It comes in two colors, white and charcoal gray.

iPad User Guide

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If you have been looking for the iPad user guide and having difficulty finding it, have no fear. You can click on this link to open up your iPad user guide for iOS9.

The guide is searchable and interactive. With the guide, you can learn about and better use many native apps like Notes, Calendar, Mail and Messages.

For those new to the iPad or iOS, you can check out the Basics, iPad at a glance or Get Started sections to learn more basic information.

There are even sections on using iPad in business, international keyboards and safety, handling and support.

The topics shown below are covered. Click on the link and start learning.

  • iPad at a glance
  • Get started
  • Basics
  • Siri
  • Messages
  • Mail
  • Safari
  • Music
  • FaceTime
  • Calendar
  • Photos
  • Camera
  • Contacts
  • Clock
  • Maps
  • Photo Booth
  • Game Center
  • News
  • iTunes Store
  • App Store
  • iBooks
  • Podcasts
  • Accessibility
  • iPad in Business
  • International Keyboards
  • HomeKit
  • Safety, handling, and support

Apple Pencil – Worth the Wait

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Pencil Box Opening

When the Apple Pencil came, there were a couple of questions, How good does it work with the iPad Pro, How long does the charge last, How can you check the charge?

First, the Pencil works great with the iPad Pro. Using the built in Notes app, the ability to smoothly draw, sketch and write is abundantly clear.

Battery Pencil Level

The charge seems to last for a very long time. In order to check the battery charge, you swipe down from the top of your iPad, tap widgets and you will see the paired pencil with the battery charge percentage remaining.

Pencil Adapter Lightening Adapter

In order to charge the pencil, you can insert it into your iPad and watch the charge go up to 100% or using an adaptor, plug in the lightening cable, attach the adapter and then plug in your pen with the cap removed to charge the pencil.

The pencil comes with an extra tip and the above adapter. To replace the tip, you unscrew the old one.

Using apps like Notes Plus, Paper, or Procreate with the Pencil will make you want to take notes, draw and explore your inner artist. When you get the Pencil, start using it like you would with paper and pen and you will not be disappointed.


Apple Pencil Order Limits

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credit Apple Inc.

(credit Apple Inc.)

Apple has placed limits on the purchase of its new Apple Pencil stylus on the online store. When you try to order more than 2, you receive an message telling you that the quantities you can order are limited.

Apple Pencil Limits

The new stylus has been sold out almost since its introduction on Nov. 11. Shipping times currently show 4-5 weeks.

The Apple Stores have Pencils as demonstration tools to use and try out but have not had stock to sell in large quantities.

Pencil at different angles

The above drawing was made using the Pencil and shows what happens when selecting a couple of different tools and varying the angle and pressure of the Pencil using Apple’s built in Notes app on the iPad Pro.

The Pencil does have some fun properties including the ability to shade and change the thickness of the line based on pressure and angle.

It is simple to pair your Pencil. Remove the cap and insert the lighting tip into your iPad. Tap on blue tooth pairing when the message appears.

Another fun feature of the Pencil is that when it rolls, it always ends up with the  logo on the metal band facing up.

If you want one by the holidays, order it now.


Featured iPad Pro Apps and iOS Keyboard

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iPad Pro Featured Apps

The App Store is featuring many apps that have been either updated to work with or already work well with the new iPad Pro.

With the recent release of the iPad Pro, Nov. 11, many developers have been busy updating their screen shots to show the amazing screen real estate and look of their updated apps.

The new iOS keyboard for the iPad Pro feels better and works with apps that choose to use it. For example, MacJournal for iPad looks and feels better with the new keyboard.

MacJournal iPad Pro

Ulysses for iPad appears to still rely on the “bigger” iOS keyboard and along with their own enhancements. In landscape mode, the screen feels cramped by the keyboard. I expect an update soon. However, the app still performs great and you can adjust the size of the font and layout in the app using the gear settings. Tap on the gear and adjust the layout

Ulysses Landscape iPad Pro

In portrait mode, the sheet you work on feels roomier.

Ulysses Portrait iPad Pro

If you want a great experience with reviewing and marking up PDFs, make sure to check out LiquidText PDF and Document Reader app. There are many ways to actively mark up the PDF and export your comments.

LiquidText ScreenShot iPad Pro


Make sure you check the app store for updates to your favorite apps as developers continue to improve the feel and functionality of their apps with the new iPad Pro.

Apps Being Updated for iPad Pro

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Paper 3 icon

With the official launch of the iPad Pro, many apps are in the process of updated to take advantage of the new iPad Pro screen real estate and new features of iOS 9.

Some of the more interesting apps that have been updated include Paper.

Paper pencilsketch

This app allows you to draw, sketch, make lists, and more. Their ink engine has been updated to take advantage of Apple’s new Pencil stylus too.


OmniPlan 2 icon

If you want to visualize, maintain and monitor your projects, consider OmniPlan 2 by OmniGroup. The latest update to the app supports the new iPad.

You can watch some videos about the app in use from OmniGroup’s website.

OmniPlan 3 for the Mac was recently introduced. It brings many new features to the already outstanding planning app including a multi-project dashboard, network diagrams, earned value analysis and more

Make sure you update your apps via the App Store to take advantage of all of the new iPad Pro features.



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