Astropad Mini goes free, now with pressure-sensitive drawing on iPhone 6s via 3D Touch

Astropad mini 3D Touch teaser 001

Astropad Mini, a cool application by former Apple engineers which turns your iPhone into a graphics tablet for the Mac, has been refreshed on the App Store today with support for 3D Touch.

The new version lets iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus owners apply varying degrees of pressure when drawing on the handset screen with their finger.

In addition, the app has gone free, lowering barrier to entry to zero bucks. Astropad Mini has been especially popular with artists and photographers.

Since its February 2015 debut, customers have bought more than 200,000 copies of the iPhone app. “We expect this new version with 3D Touch to be even more popular,“ developers told me via email.

Featuring wireless or wired (via Lightning) connectivity, nearly three times faster performance (12ms) versus Apple’s AirPlay (36ms) and remarkable image quality, courtesy of a proprietary engine dubbed Liquid, Astropad Mini links up your iPhone’s touch display with your Mac and mirrors your Mac’s screen on your iPhone.

Astropad Mini 1.0 for iOS teaser 004

This lets you naturally draw and retouch directly into popular creative applications such as Photoshop, Lightroom and more, all from your iPhone. And if you own an iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus, you can apply pressure via 3D Touch as you draw to create thinner or thicker lines.

Astropad Mini for iOS teaser 009

According to developers, the app can detect up to 256 levels of pressure when used with a stylus or your finger. Here’s their two months old promotional video which highlights some of the features of Astropad Mini, sans 3D Touch support.

Astropad Mini also supports the Apple Watch for remote drawing into Mac apps and more. As I wrote in my review of Astropad Mini, it’s the perfect stylus replacement. Moreover, Astropad Mini is more than a capable companion for styli-lovers with support for a range of accessories, including FiftyThree’s Pencil, all Adonit models, iOS-compatible Wacom devices, Pogo’s Connect 2, Adobe’s Ink and Hex3’s JaJa.

Astropad Mini 1.0 for iOS stylus image 001

Even if you’re not an artist, Astropad Mini is great for doing annotation or signing documents. Now that the iPhone app has dropped to zero bucks, it’s a great way to get started for free before upgrading to pro-level Astropad for iPad.


Astropad Mini is a free, English-only app that requires an iPhone with iOS 8.2 or later. The iPad edition, called Astropad Graphics Tablet, costs $39.99 and requires an iPad with iOS 8.0 or later.

A free of charge desktop helper app (supports all Macs with 10.9 Mavericks or later) is required for Astropad Mini and Astropad Graphics Tablet.

For more information about Astropad Mini, check out the official website.