// Ars Technica
The Pointer Events specification, an API for Web developers to handle touch, mouse, and pen inputs in Web applications, has been published as a Recommendation by the World Wide Web Consortium. This is the Web standards group's final, mutually agreed on version of the spec.
Pointer Events was first proposed by Microsoft as an alternative to another specification, Touch Events. Touch Events was born from Apple's initial work to touch-enable Safari on the iPhone. W3C moved to standardize it without Apple's involvement, and at one point during Touch Events' development, it looked as if the spec would be covered by Apple-owned patents, with Apple unwilling to offer a royalty free grant for users of the spec. Had this situation continued, it would have precluded W3C from issuing the spec as a recommendation.
Pointer Events avoided the patent issues. It was also a more general specification; while Touch Events was designed for touch and touch alone, Pointer Events allowed developers to use similar code to handle touch, stylus/pen, and mouse inputs. Pointer Events also addressed certain problems with Touch Events, such as a 300 millisecond delay before responding to taps in order to disambiguate between single and double taps.