The new iPad Pro is so impressive. With its all-new design, it is the thinnest iPad, at 5.9 millimetres. The home button is gone and it comes with Face ID (facial identification) technology.
And those are just a couple of the new features. The shape is shifting from the curvy look, bringing it in line with the flatter iPhone SE. The headphone jack is gone, allowing a thinner design. And it is a lot more compact inside due to the home-button removal.
The latest version is clearly an upgrade, with no real trade-offs. With the home button gone, your interaction will be much like using an iPhone, but there are also some slight differences because iOS on iPad is different from iOS on the iPhone. Still, it is very similar.
At first blush the latest version appears similar to the first iPad, launched in 2010, but a closer look reveals huge differences. The graphic capability of the iPad Pro 3rd Gen is 1,000 times faster than the original iPad – and so has come a long way in eight years.
The basic form is really thin and light. This smaller iPad Pro retains the same weight as the previous generation, but with a larger screen. The previous generation is 10.5 inches, while this one is 11 inches. The larger iPad Pro, on the other hand, while strong inside and retaining the same 12.9 inch screen, is 25 per cent smaller in term of volume compared to the previous generation. And that is because it also is smaller and thinner.
With the home button gone, we can use Face ID, which has been redesigned and reengineered to work specifically for the iPad Pro. Face ID can identify you regardless of the orientation. And it has been reengineered to support all of the different ways that Face ID can be used by an iPad.
But how to navigate the iPad when the home button is gone? Well, it is similar to iPhone, in that you swipe up from anywhere to go back to the home screen. However, for the iPad, if you swipe up and hold in the middle, you can go to all the pages that you have used, quickly switching between different apps.
Meanwhile, the 7-megapixel TrueDepth camera is the same as that found in the iPhone XS. Portrait mode, smart HDR, portrait lighting – all the functionality people love in the iPhone X or iPhone XS is now available on the iPad Pro for the first time.
The most colour-accurate panel results in a bright screen able to support 25 per cent more colour than can an RBG screen. It offers a true tone, giving a more natural viewing experience under any light conditions.
Through ProMotion, the screen can refresh at 120 times per second, double the performance of a regular screen, and delivering increased responsiveness to the touch or the Apple Pencil. ProMotion is also dynamic, going up or down depending on what you do. The Liquid Retina display, similar to the panel on the iPhone XR, is an LCD screen and curves around the edges.
The iPadPro has four speakers, each of which play bass, with the upper two also playing the mid and high tones to ensure constant sound balance. The speakers are really smart, and change in response to the tablet’s changing orientation.
Performance is based on the 8-core, A12X Fusion Chip, up to 90 per cent faster compared to the previous generation. The graphic perspective is twice as fast. For first time, iPad has a neural engine similar to the one in the iPhone XS.
Also, it comes with two new design accessories, the Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard. The Apple Pencil Gen II, does not need a connecting line, being magnetically attached to the iPad. It is always charging when attached to the tablet, and always ready for use. iPad Pro can achieve up to 10 hours of all-day battery life, and while charging the pencil consumes juice its impact is minimal.
In Note app, you can double tap to switch between pencil and eraser. It also supports third-party apps, such as Procreate, in which a quick menu is launched when you tap the pencil. To use MarkUp, take a screen shot and then express yourself with the pencil.
MyScript, a note-taking app, also supports the taping feature of the pencil. A double-tap of the pencil changes between handwriting and text formats, which can be copied and also give you a word count. The new smart keyboard can protect the front and back of the iPad and continues the use of a smart connector to avoid the need to pair. The smart connector can move from the left side to the back and offers two different viewing angles. Shortcuts are also available through the keyboard.
Last but not least, the USB-C port means you can connect directly to a bunch of accessories, the monitor, camera and storage with no need for an adapter anymore. It is easier. The data capacity has also doubled. It is basically USB-C 2.1 speed, you can import raw photos and raw video at twice the data capacity.
Another cool thing is that your iPad Pro can now be used to charge your iPhone, just like a Mac. This is a first for the iPad. Some USB-C-monitors can also charge the iPad at the same time. USBC also means the iPad Pro can now use the same adapter as MacBook Pro, along with USB-C to HDMI and USB-C to LAN – all the adapters you can use on MacBook Pro can also now be used on iPad Pro too. You can also use USBC to SD card and USBC to (wireless) headphone.
The iPad Pro is smaller but more powerful, and at the same time the battery juice seems to always be there. It offers a large retina display with advanced camera and neural engine performance, making the iPad the ultimate device for augmented reality experiences. And with the USCB port, the iPad can connect to a lot of devices.