I'm looking forward to using this—if only as an alternative to Wacom.
I've used several Wacom tablets in the past, including 2 large Cintiqs. Each time I was super-excited about using them in the beginning, but the experience is just such a hassle—from the numerous cords, to the split/mirrored screen set up, to the table space taken up (along with the computer that I need to run it with). And unless I'm sketching all the time, I need to clear my desk before and after I use it; I can't just plop down at my sofa to sketch or bring the Cintiq out to get some coffee. Don't get me wrong, Cintiqs are GREAT for sit-down, professional-level work, but it's not great for spur-of-the-moment sketches when the inspiration comes or when I'm in the mood (again, unless you have the desk space to just leave it there). Long story short: my Cintiq is collecting dust and I still resort to my sketchbook and pens 99% of the time.
Design-wise, I think the Apple Pencil actually makes a lot of sense. It's a fine balance between "accessory" and "main tool". It's the iPad Pro's "highlight", like how the white earbuds were for the iPod. It's also a statement of trust in its significance and difference; a blend-in color like dark silver/black/gray would've made it even more like a "stylus", whose consumer impression can vary widely. I'm sure Apple wanted to distance itself from that.
Second, I don't think it's contrary to Steve Job's anti-stylus statement. Job's understanding of stylus at the time was that the stylus is passive, static, rigid, and almost too critical to the use of the accompanying smartphone for its own good. The iPad Pro can exist perfectly fine without the Pencil, but at the same time the Pencil can bring a whole new level of experience and interaction (if it lives up to its promise) for those specific users. The Pencil is more equivalent, in the technological realm, to the Wacom pens, and I think most people would agree that the Wacom pens are far superior to the "stylus" of a typical smartphone. But its thinness and overall similarity to a regular pencil would imply that Apple wants you to use it but not be overly precious about it. I think there's something to be said about how little the regular pencil has changed.
In any case, the near-zero latency and eye-to-hand accuracy of the Wacom pen is the best thing about it. If the iPad Pro and Pencil combination can come very close to it, I think they'll be a serious challenge to at least Wacom's entry products.