Astropad Standard and Studio Apps Updated With Support for Luna Display Adapter, Which is Now Available for Pre-Order

Astropad today introduced new updates for both its Astropad Studio and Astropad Standard apps, bringing support for the Luna Display adapter, which is also now available for pre-order.

Introduced as a Kickstarter project last year, the Luna Display is designed to turn any iPad into a wireless second display for the Mac.


Astropad alone mirrors the Mac display, but Luna Display is designed to extend the Mac display rather than simply mirror it.

The Luna Display adapter plugs into a Mac using Mini DisplayPort or USB-C, and then after downloading the app, the Luna Display serves as an extension of the Mac, letting Mac content be accessed directly from an iPad.

Both of the Astropad apps now support Luna Display, and the Luna Display itself can be pre-ordered from the Luna Display website for $69.99.


Astropad also announced today that it is discontinuing all support for third-party styluses. The company says that third-party styluses deliver poor performance compared to Apple Pencil and create engineering complexities.

Astropad no longer recommends third-party styluses for artists. Support will cease at the end of 2018 to allow Astropad to focus on optimizing its apps for the Apple Pencil.

Astropad Standard can be downloaded from the App Store for $29.99. [Direct Link]

Astropad Studio, which costs $11.99 per month for syncing and monthly feature updates, is free to download initially. [Direct Link]


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Apple Rejects AstroPad Update That Turned an iPad’s Camera into a Software Button

Astro HQ, the makers of popular iPad drawing app AstroPad Studio, yesterday announced that their plans for a "Camera Button" feature for the app have been scuppered by Apple.

The developers' clever hack that turns an iPad's front-facing camera into a functional software button was supposed to be coming in the next AstroPad Studio update, but Apple has rejected it on the grounds that the idea flouts App Store review guidelines.

The announcement came in a Medium.com post by Astro HQ titled "RIP Camera Button", which revealed that Apple had turned down the innovative iPad interaction because it broke the company's rules for iOS software.
We planned to introduce the Camera Button in an update to Astropad Studio going out today. However, we are disappointed to report that the Camera Button was rejected by Apple’s App Store review under Section 2.5.9:

Apps that alter or disable the functions of standard switches, such as the Volume Up/Down and Ring/Silent switches, or other native user interface elements or behaviors will be rejected.

Apple is known for its strict adherence to App Store rules, so the rejection shouldn't really come as much of a surprise. But the news will also likely disappoint backers of AstroPad's forthcoming Luna display adapter, which turns an iPad into a wireless extended Mac desktop. The developers had hoped to include the Camera Button feature in the Luna software, but they've been forced to drop it from that, too.

Despite the setback, Astro HQ said their "urge to innovate" lives on, and that they remained "committed to pushing the boundaries of software and hardware engineering so that we can create the best productivity tools possible".


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