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9/13/2015
11:06 AM
David Wagner
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Apple Pencil: 10 Alternative Uses

Apple Pencil is coming. Everyone will buy one. Because Apple. Then, we'll have to figure out what we're supposed to do with it. Here are some ideas.

iPhone 6S, iPad Pro, TV, Watch: Apple's Fall Lineup
iPhone 6S, iPad Pro, TV, Watch: Apple's Fall Lineup
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Apple redesigned the pencil to make it more expensive and incapable of writing on anything but its own surface. (Pun totally intended.) Great idea. Next we'll be redesigning paper so the only way you can write on it is with a computer.

People looking to come up with a use for the new pencil point out that some artists and graphic designers use styli every day as part of their work. True. Now, what about the other 350 million Americans?

We could use the Apple Pencil to sign e-docs. Maybe our names will be more legible with this than with the ones available at grocery store checkout lanes now. Maybe there will be an Apple Pencil attached to a little chain in every bank branch.

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This thing will sell. Every Apple product sells, whether we need it or not. Here's what you can do with your Apple Pencil after you rush to buy it and realize you really didn't need an Apple Pencil:

10 Alternative Uses for Apple Pencil

1. Create a stylish hair bun.

(Image: Abby Smith via Youtube)

(Image: Abby Smith via Youtube)

And don't think that's only for the ladies. The man bun style is totally in right now.

(Image: digboston via Flickr)

(Image: digboston via Flickr)

2. Roll up the toothpaste. You'll need to economize on the little things after paying that much for a pencil. Slowly curl a toothpaste tube around an Apple Pencil so as not to waste an ounce.

3. Clean your shoes. Ever step in … umm … what your neighbor should have scooped up last time he walked the dog? Make Steve Jobs happy (he famously hated the stylus). Use your Apple Pencil to clean out the treads on your shoes.

4. Play the world's most expensive game of pick-up sticks. Get all your disappointed friends together with their Apple sticks … er ... Pencils. At $99 a pop, you've got a $3,000 pick-up sticks set.

5. Poking Android users. You know, the ones with the phones that are more powerful, more flexible, cheaper, and that Apple is basically copying now? You know you want to. The cost of having the cool phone gets higher every day. Wouldn't a poke or two make you feel a little better?

6. Create beautiful pinwheels!

7. Make the world's most expensive Post-It note. Attach an iPad to your refrigerator. Use the stylus to write your grocery list. iPad Pro: $799. Apple Pencil: $99. World's coolest grocery list: priceless.

8. Get two, use them as chopsticks. They're much better than those wooden disposable ones you get with your takeout order. No splinters.

9. Play Pooh Sticks. Hopefully all of you have played a good game of Pooh Sticks in your life. Find a bridge over a stream. Throw your Apple Pencils down to the stream with a friend and see whose floats to the other side of the bridge first. Why Pooh Sticks? Oh my, you really had a rough childhood, didn't you?

10. Play fetch. Your dog needs exercise. Because of Apple's unique design qualities, you can expect this thing to be very aerodynamic. Recommended only for small dogs.

(Image: Hazelshalo via Twitter)

(Image: Hazelshalo via Twitter)

David has been writing on business and technology for over 10 years and was most recently Managing Editor at Enterpriseefficiency.com. Before that he was an Assistant Editor at MIT Sloan Management Review, where he covered a wide range of business topics including IT, ... View Full Bio
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David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
9/15/2015 | 11:29:19 AM
Re: True innovation? or just another cash cow?
@mejiac- Mean? Well, I hope not. Skeptical. For sure. :)

You hit the nail on the head with this thing. It isn't that it isn't great. It is that it is super expensive, fragile, easily lost, and it does things we can already do with only slightly less ease. 

the truth is that you probably won't get to do anything with the Apple Pencil because you will lose it in the first week. That's why very few people use expensive pens anymore. Papermate is just fine and if you lose one, you move on.
mejiac
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mejiac,
User Rank: Ninja
9/15/2015 | 11:25:34 AM
True innovation? or just another cash cow?
David,

Ok...for some of your items listed...you're just being mean...but then again, some make sense (I know having this as a grocery list on my fridge would definitly make things interesting)

I will say that Apple did do there homework on how a stylus should work. If we compare since the days of Palm Pilots, the Apple Pen is definitly a progress forward.

Now... if you're carrying a $100 pen on your front pocket, only for it to fall when you're changing shirts and break...yeah... they'll get me motivated... that and my daoughter dipping it in paint for her daycare class
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