The iPad Pro, revealed during Apple’s recent event, is the most powerful iOS device ever made, and “the biggest iPad news since the iPad,” CEO Tim Cook said from the stage. The iPad Pro also has two new accessories: the Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil.
Apple’s king-size tablet measures 12.9 inches on the diagonal. With 5.6 million pixels in a 2732×2048 resolution, the iPad Pro has a higher resolution than the 15in MacBook Pro with Retina display. And according to Apple, the new multitasking capabilities in iOS 9 were specifically designed to make the most out of the iPad Pro.
Available in November, it will be available in Silver, Gold and Space Grey. While no UK pricing has been announced, we can get an idea how much you’ll have to pay by looking at US prices.
- 32GB model with Wi-Fi: $799 (around £519)
- 128GB model with Wi-Fi: $949 (around £616)
- 128GB model with Wi-Fi and cellular capabilities: $1,079 (around £700)
The iPad Pro comes with Apple’s new A9X chip, which has twice the memory and is 1.8x faster than the A8X chip in the iPad Air 2. Apple calls this “desktop-class performance,” so you’ll be able to do things on the iPad Pro that you previously reserved for your Mac.
Additionally, Apple has updated the storage controller so you can quickly open large files, like 4K video, hi-res photos from your DSLR, or that seemingly endless PowerPoint presentation your boss wants you to edit.
The iPad Pro is a bit thicker and heavier than its previous Air 2 counterpart, but not significantly considering all the improvements. It’s 0.8mm thicker and 276g heavier.
Features include a multi-touch display, 8Mp iSight camera, 1080 HD video recording capabilities, 802.11ac Wi-Fi technology with MIMO, Touch ID, LTE and an Apple SIM.
Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard
Apple also revealed two new accessories for the iPad Pro: the Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard. Both will also be available to buy in November.
Costing $99 (£65), Apple’s first stylus for the iPad Pro is pretty self-explanatory. You can use it to add handwritten notes to your digital documents, but it’s also got some interesting technology that will be particularly helpful for sketch artists.
The Apple Pencil has several sensors on both its case and the tip that can detect the position, pressure, angle, and orientation of your strokes. Draw gently on the screen to create light strokes, or press down to draw thicker lines. Two sensors on the tip work with Multi-Touch display to detect whenever you’re tilting the Pencil to create a shading effect. Apple’s stylus can also be used simultaneously with your fingers, for those who have yet to graduate past the finger paintings stage.
The $169 (£110) Smart Keyboard is basically a Smart Cover with a slim, foldable, lightweight, water-resistant, 4mm keyboard built in. In addition to using it to type, you can fold up the Smart Keyboard to prop up the iPad Pro or cover up the screen completely.
Apple has created a new threepronged Smart Connector that allows for the Smart Keyboard to be connected to the iPad without plugs or wires or Bluetooth pairing. It’s similar to how the Apple Watch’s diagnostic port works. The Smart Connector allows for the seamless transfer of data and power between devices, so you won’t have to charge the Smart Keyboard.