How to Use Smart Script in iPadOS 18 to Enhance Your Handwriting

iPadOS 18 Smart Script Featured Image

Apple released a handful of new iPadOS 18 features, including one that allows you to improve your handwriting. Known as Smart Script, this feature is available for a handful of Apple devices. 

In this guide, I’ll show you how to use Smart Script in iPadOS 18. To ensure that you’re better prepared, I will also outline the requirements for using this feature. Let’s get started. 

What Is Smart Script?

Smart Script is a new feature in iPadOS 18 that will help you write more effectively. But rather than making your handwriting look like it was generated with text, your writing will still match your penmanship. The main difference is that it’ll look neater. 

You’ll use Smart Script in the Notes app. Besides making your handwriting look neat, you can also use the feature to arrange your text. The feature uses machine learning to make your text look nicer, and while you should see instant results, it’ll improve even further over time. 

Requirements for Using Smart Script in Notes

Before you use Smart Script, you should know that it isn’t available on all Apple devices supporting iPadOS 18. You can only use this feature if you have an iPad Pro with an M2 chip or later, meaning that it might be time to upgrade if you have an old device and would like to access this feature. 

In addition to having an M2 iPad or later with iPadOS 18 downloaded, you should also use an Apple Pencil to get the most out of Smart Script. However, if you don’t like using Apple Pencils, you can always consider one of many Apple Pencil alternatives

Note icon NOTE
If you decide to upgrade to the latest iPad, it’s worth protecting your device to ensure that you don’t need to visit a Genius Bar for avoidable reasons. Check out these top iPad Pro M4 cases for maximum protection, and choose from aesthetics if that’s also important to you.

How to Use Smart Script in Notes 

Time needed: 3 minutes

Now that you know which devices Smart Script is available on, let’s look at how to use the feature in Apple Notes. Follow these steps:

  1. Download iPadOS 18 by going to Settings > General > Software Update. Until September, you’ll have to download the iPadOS 18 beta.

    iPadOS Settings

  2. Open the Notes app.

  3. Tap on the Pencil icon and then select the three-dots icon, before toggling Auto-refine Handwriting on.

    the ipad three-dots icon

  4. Start typing in the Notes app as you normally would.

Note icon NOTE
Follow the same steps to download the iOS 18 Developer Beta but from your iPad instead.

Why You Should Use Smart Script 

Smart Script might seem like a bit of a gimmicky feature compared to some of iPadOS’s recent introductions, such as Freeform in 2022. However, it has lots of advantages if you regularly handwrite in your Apple Notes app. For starters, you’ll find it much easier to read your text when you’re normally prone to fatigue in your hands. 

Once you begin using Smart Script, you should find it much easier to read your handwriting. But beyond that, the app has several other advantages. For example, you’ll find it easier to organize your thoughts and share them with others if needed. 

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