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Apple introduces a 9.7-inch iPad Pro tablet

by Mark Tyson on 21 March 2016, 19:27

Tags: Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), iPad

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qaczkk

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Apple has unveiled the second member of the iPad Pro family. This new device uses the more familiar iPad standard screen size of 9.7-inches but is equipped with all the 'Pro' features that Apple brought to its large debut 12.9-inch model last year. Looking at this and the previous news story of the iPhone SE launch, it looks like Apple thinks that 'size is everything'.

According the Apple's Phil Schiller "customers have fallen in love with the iPad Pro". Like its predecessor, the new smaller iPad Pro was touted by Schiller as a replacement for your old PC. While smaller and lighter, this newer iPad Pro shares many of the features of its bigger brother but beats it on nearly everything except for the screen size.

The 9.7-inch iPad Pro's screen offers 2048 x 1536 pixels, at 264 pixels per inch (ppi). That's understandably a lower res than the larger stable mate (2732 x 2048 pixels, same ppi) but it offers other improved specs such as; wider colour gamut, and true-tone. It is said to be "the brightest and least reflective display of any tablet".

Of course the new iPad Pro is smaller and lighter. It weighs just about 440g compared to the 12.9-incher's 720g. As well as being smaller it is a little slimmer at 6.1mm – this all helps in its bung-in-a-bag portability. Compare the iPad Pro model sizes in the images above and below.

Another advantage of the new iPad Pro is in its cameras. Both the main iSight camera and FaceTime camera have been updated compared to the older model. The new main camera spec is a 12-megapixel iSight camera, with f2.2 lens and auto image stabilisation, it sounds just like the iPhone 6S camera. The FaceTime camera equipped has been boosted from the 1.2-megapixel example on the 12.9-inch iPad Pro model to 5-megapixels, with an added Retina flash unit. With the new imaging abilities Apple suggests users can shot and edit 4K movies on the device.

Spoecs in common between both iPad Pro models are; the A9X chip with 64‑bit architecture and M9 coprocessor, the 10 hour battery life, the sensors, Touch ID, Apple Pay, and four speaker audio. Importantly, and making this an iPad Pro rather than a new 'Air' model, it has the A9X chip, and the Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil compatibility – which apparently makes it great for Microsoft Office editing, mark-up and design.

The new 9.7-inch iPad Pro is priced at $599 for the 32GB version, at $749 for the 128GB version, and at $899 for the 256GB version (Wi-Fi only model pricing, please add $129 for LTE versions). The device is to be made available in four metallic finishes, including space grey and rose gold. Apple's newest tablets will hit the shelves starting from 31st March.



HEXUS Forums :: 15 Comments

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Stick Mac OS and a x86 chip in it and we might talk. It's completely pointless with just iOS on it.
Wozza365
Stick Mac OS and a x86 chip in it and we might talk. It's completely pointless with just iOS on it.

I've always been slightly bemused as to who's buying these high-end tablets and what they're using them for (and the same sentiment goes for stuff like the Pixel-C from Google - I'm not picking on Apple).

I can almost see the point of the MS Surface if you tend to dock the thing - I mean my work laptop spends most of its life bound to a dock, with a proper keyboard, mouse, multiple monitors etc.
Maybe back ‘in the day’ when a tablet gave you the ‘instant on’ experience that was the preserve of silly-money laptops with SSD I could see the appeal.
Currently we have perfectly great cheap tablets (I love my nVidia shield to bits) for casually having to hand - but I'd have thought Apple should be bringing out a surface equivalent.
I've got a horrible feeling it's because most current Apple customers have never actually bought/used/needed the lovely OSX - and Apple is writing it off (I didn't see mention
iOS has been great for them so far - but simply racking up the prices and specs for the same hobbled-platform is a dead end. It's by no means a bad OS, but buggered if I've ever bought anything ‘created’ on an ipad.
It's a tablet with a touchscreen. iOS is designed for just that. OSX isn't.
Bit that went AWOL above, was that I've not seen mention of them upgrading the Mac Pro - their top of the line halo platform. It was expensive and a bit slow (but very very pretty) when it first came out, and has been left to rot since.
goldcd
I've always been slightly bemused as to who's buying these high-end tablets and what they're using them for (and the same sentiment goes for stuff like the Pixel-C from Google - I'm not picking on Apple).
'designers' who believe that apple is the only choice to do design work (it's not but it's a stupidly ‘popular’ viewpoint) and rich people who just want the ‘best apple product’ because it's fashionable. I haven't actually seen anyone saying they own a pixel-c….

I can almost see the point of the MS Surface if you tend to dock the thing - I mean my work laptop spends most of its life bound to a dock, with a proper keyboard, mouse, multiple monitors etc.
Maybe back ‘in the day’ when a tablet gave you the ‘instant on’ experience that was the preserve of silly-money laptops with SSD I could see the appeal.
Currently we have perfectly great cheap tablets (I love my nVidia shield to bits) for casually having to hand - but I'd have thought Apple should be bringing out a surface equivalent.
I've got a horrible feeling it's because most current Apple customers have never actually bought/used/needed the lovely OSX - and Apple is writing it off (I didn't see mention
iOS has been great for them so far - but simply racking up the prices and specs for the same hobbled-platform is a dead end. It's by no means a bad OS, but buggered if I've ever bought anything ‘created’ on an ipad.
Unlike apple iOS the surface pro can run desktop class apps like photoshop/illustrator or even zbrush where the stylus works great, yeah iOS has their ‘mobile versions’ but they're never the same and often majorly restricted. As to who would buy one… I would if I had more use of it, I can see how I'd use it, literally the above programs I mentioned, I'm just not sure I'd use it enough to justify the £1500 or so I'd need to spend on it when I'd likely be using it at home where my main rig is.

goldcd
Bit that went AWOL above, was that I've not seen mention of them upgrading the Mac Pro - their top of the line halo platform. It was expensive and a bit slow (but very very pretty) when it first came out, and has been left to rot since.
To be fair there hasn't really been any major upgrades to the Xeon cpu's other than clockspeed/more cores but they come with higher prices. The main issue is likely down to the gpu because it uses their own non standardised socket which means a custom pcb design rather than taking a normal pcie one and slotting it in… All this to make it small as a trash can lol